While this Marylebone eatery hasn’t been around too long, Chiltern Firehouse has quickly cemented its title as the place to see and be seen. This is the ultimate A-list hang, courtesy of hotelier André Balazs who owns the infamous Chateau Marmont in Hollywood. But the water runs even deeper than that – Portuguese chef Nuno Mendes is heading up the kitchen where elevated American classics are churned out to those lucky enough to snag a table.
The dining room has all the elements of an elegant brasserie and the buzzy atmosphere keeps things just on the right side of casual, while still being très chic. In the warmer months, you can grab a seat in the garden to enjoy bubbly cocktails and a few nibbles – i.e. crab-stuffed donuts, because you just have to. To drink, it’d be a sin to skip out on the signature vermouth serves. Seem simple enough, but these aperitivos should get all the love they deserve. For a pre-dinner sipper, try the Via Americano – Cocchi Americano Rosa on the rocks served with fresh mint and a grapefruit twist. And for a post-dinner tipple, try Living in Sin with Hibiki 12yr whisky, sweet wine, ginger and black pepper syrup, truffle honey and chocolate bitters. Is there a better partner for dessert? Probably not.
From ladies who lunch to drinks with clients you really want to impress, the crowd here is decidedly crisp – so don your finer digs if you’re coming by.
Best Bars tip: Now that the restaurant is open for lunch and breakfast, swing by during the day to get that all-too-hot Chiltern experience without having to fight tooth and nail for a booking. And don’t be surprised when you bump into a celeb (or three).
— Sasha Filimonov, @SashaSips