London’s restaurant scene has gained a new category in recent years, on which Dalloway Terrace makes multiple appearances. We’ve always had most romantic, the best food, views or cocktails, but ‘most instagrammable’ is fast becoming just as desirable, with millennials stampeding Monzo-card-in-fist to hotspots purely for ‘the gram’. Destinations in this category include Mayfair’s Sketch, Queen of Hoxton’s rooftop in Shoreditch, Palm Vaults cafe in Hackney and Franks in Peckham. But its not enough to be just a pretty face to win big in this category. Like the list above, venues must offer the full package of amazing food, creative cocktails, buzzing ambiance while of course providing that unique backdrop for photos and selfies.
Situated at the beautiful Bloomsbury Hotel, Dalloway Terrace launched in 2016 and is a bona-fide hidden gem, the kind any tourist (or Londoner) would dream of stumbling into by chance from the hectic streets of Soho. Its a two minute walk from Tottenham Court road station, but one step inside takes you a million miles away into a beautiful indoor-outdoor space filled with wall to floor flower walls.
Named after the eponymous character created by Virginia Woolf, an author whose name will forever be associated with Bloomsbury, Dalloway Terrace is an elegant, poetic and quintessentially English space. Striped navy and white awnings, colourful flower walls and an abundance of candles and fairy lights make for a magically romantic space. The atmosphere is warm and inviting with lots of friendly waiting staff helpfully showing wide-eyed customers to their seats, offering blankets, water or fresh bread baskets with a genuine smile. It must be hard to be sad or moody working in such a beautiful space, after all.
Being attached to a hotel means Dalloway Terrace is open all hours – right through from 8am for breakfast, to brunch, afternoon tea and an all day dining and dinner menu. Its won awards for brunch (meaning we’ll have to come back), but we visited one rainy evening for dinner. The menu is changed seasonally and although the weather outside stays more like December, inside the terrace, dishes sing with spring freshness. A starter of Dorset Crab on Toast with Watercress and Apple offered a wonderful marriage or sweet, light crab meat piled on a rich dark Guinness Bread. My partner’s Seared Scallops with Cauliflower Puree, Poached Raisins and Apple was woffled down almost before I could inquire about the taste. I’m assured it tasted as pretty as it looked.
For our main, we shared an fantastic Spring Rack of Lamb served with Spring Greens and Toasted Almonds. The lamb was served melting pink in the middle with a pot of shining lamb Jus that was somehow richer and meatier than the lamb itself, heightening and bringing together all the flavours.
Even the desserts are romantically presented, continuing with the fresh spring theme. The Honey Mouse was feather- light but full of flavour with Cashew Nuts, Honey Mango, Ginger and Lemon Sorbet. A NYTimber Champagne Poached English Rhubarb with Custard, Rhubarb Carpaccio and Champagne Sorbets proved another triumph of classic English flavors with a refined twist.
The cocktail menu offers a beautiful range of pretty, pastoral sounding concoctions like the Country Fair – Beefeater Gin, Maraschino Liquur, Grapefruit Shrub, Peach Puree, Soda Water. Or Garden of England with Aperol, Sherry, Lavender Syrup, Grapefruit, Lemon and Sparkling Wine which brought the sweet and sour notes of grapefruit and Aperol together perfectly. The wine menu is varied and also offers a nice selection of artisan English sparkling wines from across the UK, for those that prefer straight up bubbles.
Fully heated in winter, this year round destination restaurant and bar offers the peace and charm of a secluded secret garden in the winter and a light, elegant and beautiful alfresco offering in the spring and summer months. After dinner, head downstairs to the grotto-like garden bar with cozy seating coves, or inside to the hotel’s stunning Bloomsbury Club Bar (pictured below).