Review on Urban Bar & Brasserie
Following on from the success of Gamba and other ventures, Alan Tompkins and head chef David Clunas are making their mark in new city-centre premises that were once home to the Bank of England's Scottish HQ (the manager's office is now a swish private dining room).
The bar 'looks good enough to live in' and the décor evokes something of a gentlemen's club, while the brasserie itself conjures up the mood of a '30s Manhattan hangout with glittering mirrors, vivid artwork, glass lamps and dark panelling.
Fish gets a good airing on the vibrant menu – as in sea bass stuffed with red pepper, sun-blush tomatoes and silver anchovies or roast monkfish with a stew of mussels, onions, lemon and thyme. Other high spots might include warm salad of chicken livers with whole almonds and sherry, confit of duck with roast apple, port and Puy lentils, plus desserts such as Valrhona chocolate and orange custard with hazelnuts.
Lunches and pre-theatre menus focus on some of the simpler items from the repertoire – duck liver parfait, Toulouse sausages with pesto mash, baked lemon tart, for example – and the 100-strong wine list offers plenty of choice at fair prices.
Restaurant Opening Times
Lunch: 12.00 through until
Dinner: 10.30pm Mon-Sun
Accepted credit cards
Visa, Master Card, American Express