city guides The Greenhouse restaurant, Mayfair: a verdant oasis of culinary wonder Renowned for its French infusions, organic reverence and gastronomical ingenuity: The Greenhouse is a widely respected classic which is up to the mark in modern flavours and innovative techniques.
by Ellie Loxton

Since 1977, The Greenhouse has delighted diners with a fusion of polished French elegance and skilled, modern experimentalism. Within its discreet, below-ground setting, The Greenhouse has secured an esteemed reputation, flourishing under the likes of Gary Rhodes, Antonin Bonnet and others.

Receiving the reins from Arnaud Bignon in 2018, American-raised Alex Dilling is the restaurant’s current Executive Chef. With a résumé featuring tutelage under French maestro Alain Ducasse and leadership roles at Hélène Darroze at The Connaught, Alex has reinterpreted The Greenhouse’s cuisine to incorporate his distinctively modern-classical approach to fine dining finesse.

The Greenhouse restaurant, Mayfair: a verdant oasis of culinary wonder
Photo: Courtesy of The Greenhouse

Alex describes his method as ‘ingredients-led’; sensitive to the flavour graduations within even the simplest of ingredients, he treats premium British produce with regard and dexterity to create dishes truly breath-taking in their flavour and beauty. From pioneering techniques to witty presentation, Alex’s food remains at the very head of its game while still retaining its humble, family-centred roots.

Childhood memories infuse Alex’s approach – he often recalls a boyhood memory of crisscrossing San Francisco with his grandfather to find the very best seasonal ingredients – and it is this characteristically stripped-back style, combined with superlative skill and experimentation, that defines Alex’s cooking.

French culture has always shaped The Greenhouse way, and Alex preserves its heritage while integrating his own defining method. French cuisine with stylish modern influences now underpin The Greenhouse’s culinary character: a fresh union between eco modernism and haute classicism. Flavours are clean, crisp and cumulative, with food presented on stylish white plates that put the meticulous architecture of Alex’s presentation centre stage.

The Greenhouse restaurant, Mayfair: a verdant oasis of culinary wonder
Photo: Courtesy of The Greenhouse

Menus at The Greenhouse are sparing in the descriptive detail they reveal. Course descriptions comprise only of starring ingredients like ‘Cornish mackerel’ or ‘Caranoa chocolate’, barely hinting at the wonderful wizardry and flavour complexity to come. Four courses from the A La Carte menu cost £110, with an optional cheese course for £18. A lunch menu is also available and can be enjoyed as a two or three course affair.

For a truly embracive experience, diners should opt for the phenomenal nine course tasting menu. With offerings including fois gras accompanied by a miniature onion-filled ‘toastie’ and ‘Oeuf Noir’ (a truffle-blackened egg almost fringing on the extra-terrestrial), each course is a genuine thrill of gastronomic brilliance.

The Greenhouse restaurant, Mayfair: a verdant oasis of culinary wonder
Photo: Courtesy of The Greenhouse

Food at The Greenhouse is inspired by a respect for nature, with its infusing organic ethos alive in the restaurant’s setting. A tranquil, tree lined garden space forms The Greenhouse’s exterior as diners descend along the gently bustling Mayfair mews. Neutral décor offset by discreet floral finishes individualises the interior, with the garden’s organic calm carried into the building through olive green chairs, miniature stone sculptures and floor to ceiling wall art evocative of tangled trees.

The verdancy is tastefully achieved; spacious seating and starched linen tablecloths ensure that fine dining and serene luxury remain at the very heart of The Greenhouse’s experience.

About me
Since graduating from the University of Cambridge, Ellie Loxton has developed a career as a lifestyle writer with a portfolio of high-quality material relevant to modern readers. Unapologetically passionate about all things luxury, Ellie particularly enjoys writing about five-star hotels, wellness and interiors.
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