The brand new Ivy Chelsea Garden is one of the most beautiful and tastefully designed restaurants in West London, and it is with open arms that we welcome it to the Kings Road. To date this year, I have failed miserably on my hunt for an exciting new restaurant opening, and have found a huge sense of relief having found this haven so close to my home in Battersea.
I wandered over from the Market Place in the Chelsea Farmers Market on Sydney Street (my favourite place for summer sunshine drinking). As soon as I saw those classy ivy green awnings, I knew it was love. The Ivy Chelsea Garden does indeed have an “aura of approachable sophistication” as their website claims.
In the month or so since opening, many a diner have come away huffing and puffing about the service, which yes, is either too slow or at the other end of the scale, frantic. It makes for good reading on tripadvisor. However, this flaw is diluted by the stunning restaurant, bar, garden and food. Quite frankly, after reading and hearing about countless ‘computer says no’ and ‘lost bookings’, I was both proud and pleased to get through the front door.
I can’t tell you how picturesque the Ivy Chelsea Garden is. I’m quite sure Peter Pan designed it. The waterfalls, climbing ivy, pastel blue striped cushioned sofas, pebbled paths, wild grasses, bay trees, olive trees and awnings all create a space, which should only be inhabited by Chelsea fairies, and me, if they’ll let me. Instead it is inhabited by an incredibly chic crowd. Relaxing there in the sun with a glass of rosé was the dream; I have found the precise cure to the Sunday Blues.
Look at this man – husband material!
The food? An absolute delight. Typical Ivy classics like baked lasagne, ham hock terrine and steak, egg & chips, mixed in with a stunning seafood menu featuring Lobster rigatoni bake, whole lemon sole and grilled loin of tuna. The meat offerings of spring lamb, ribeye and burgers all looked as good, as did the vegetarian courses such as pea and asparagus risotto. It’s certainly not experimental. It is classy and classic; incredible ingredients, very well served.
If you’re not already teary with happiness at discovering this haven, and even if you are, please, please, please order the chocolate bomb desert. Even if you don’t eat it (you will – it is phenomenal), then it is a sight to behold. Theatre at the table as the molten salted caramel reveals your desert.
This is the venue of summer 2015. I will go back as many times as they’ll have me. In a place this beautiful and with ice cold rosé flowing from a methuselah bottle, even I don’t mind waiting 2 hours for my main course!