Pidgin team to open dim sum-inspired new restaurant Magpie in Heddon StreetCultureFood & DrinksNews & features
James Ramsden and Sam Herlihy, the co-founders of Michelin-starred restaurant Pidgin in Hackney, are to open a new restaurant, Magpie, this June, on Heddon Street. Magpie will be a modern British interpretation of traditional dim sum restaurants with diners choosing plates straight off the trolley.
Upon arrival, guests will be greeted by a drinks trolley, laden with pre-mixed cocktails developed by general manager Ajax Kentish that include Smoke Off the Mountain, a rum-based Manhattan-style drink washed with peated whisky that combines Ron Zacapa 23 and Lagavulin 16, and I’m Jim Morrison I’m Dead, with its rye, oloroso, and cherry liqueur. Cocktails will be served with ice buckets and garnishes, and in addition to the trolley cocktails there will be a full bar from which guests can enjoy the Bo Diddly Rip Off – which combines mescal and Hellfire bitters and more. James has written an eclectic wine list championing smaller, independent vineyards, with the biggest selection of wines available on tap in London, the focus will be on lesser known regions and grapes, with a small bias towards California.
Winding its way through the restaurant a sleek, modern trolley will be filled with small plates such as Mackerel Crudo with Blueberry Kosho and Fennel Pollen, and Hoi An-style Terrine with Nukazuke Pickles. Trays of hot dishes will come out of the kitchen including Udon Noodles with Paitan Broth, Calabrese Sausage and Cavolo Nero and Grilled Celeriac with Gjetost and a Watermelon Barbecue Sauce. A small a la carte menu will also be available, including a few Pidgin favourites such as Galician Dairy Cow with Lobster, Pommes Sarladaises and Charred Lettuce and Cod, Fried Enoki, Fermented Jerusalem Artichoke and Cep Oil. Desserts will include Strawberry Panzanella with Olive Oil Ice Cream and “Prickly” Pear with Roasted Miso Custard and Hibiscus – as well as a secret, off-menu dish.
“We’d discussed doing something like this before we even opened Pidgin – it seemed like a fun and novel approach to our current eating out habits, and a way of tackling some of the more frustrating aspects of ‘sharing’ plates,” says James. “It’s less of a ‘sharing’ thing than just a fun restaurant with damn delicious food,” said Herlihy. “If people want to share their food then great – I do – but we want guests to feel more in control of their dinner and not have to fret over how to halve the third croquette.”
The restaurant’s design will be a bright, open space with high ceilings and a poured concrete bar lined with comfortable leather stools. Interiors will borrow from both Asian and Californian influences, combining canvas-hung walls with burnt-wood tiling and a huge landscape imprinted on the restaurant’s back wall. Pidgin’s storm bathrooms will, of course, be making the move west with their dramatic murals and tempest soundtrack.
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For further information about Magpie, 10 Heddon Street London W1B 4BX, and for booking enquiries visit here.