Hélène Darroze at The Connaught 333

The Connaught Hotel, Carlos Place , London, W1K 2AL

SquareMeal Review of Hélène Darroze at The Connaught

Hélène Darroze at The Connaught is the legendary hotel’s flagship restaurant and it continues to live up to its two-Michelin-starred credentials, with effortlessly efficient staff overseeing the cosseting wood-panelled dining room. The food bears all the hallmarks of Darroze’s signature style – artisan ingredients, beautiful presentation and pinpoint cooking with subtle eclectic nuances. Flavours and textures sing throughout, from the soft folds of Bayonne ham delivered as an appetiser to sweet strawberries topped with fragrant basil and olive-oil Chantilly for dessert. Elsewhere, grouse carries North African ras-el-hanout spicing balanced by the sweetness of dates, and velvety cubes of Wagyu beef are served with crispy puffs of potato laced with truffle for a thoroughly decadent take on steak-frites. Wine pairings chosen by a team of talented sommeliers make Hélène Darroze at The Connaught an oenophile’s delight, and there’s a huge selection of vintage bottles from top producers on the pricey list. 


The Ayala SquareMeal’s Best Female Chefs Series: Hélène Darroze

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MONICA GALETTI

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Hélène Darroze at The Connaught is recommended for

Formal | Glamorous | Quiet Conversation | Traditional | Special Occasions Under 40S | Brunch | Two Michelin Stars

Special offers

Dinner Formula: £55

Dinner formular (£55): The choice of 3 products (1 starter, 1 main and 1 dessert); Including the choice of 2 glasses of wine from the list, a bottle of water and tea or coffee. Matured fine seasonal cheeses (supplement £22).

From: 31 May 2018

To: 30 November 2018

Max: 2

Maximum of 2 diners. Includes Tax, excludes service.

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Nearby Tube/Rail Stations

Bond Street Tube Station 460m

Green Park Tube Station 670m

Address

Address: The Connaught Hotel, Carlos Place , London W1K 2AL

Area: Mayfair Oxford Street

Opening times

Mon-Sat 12N-2pm, 6.30-10pm Sun 12N-3pm 6.30-9pm

Nearby Landmarks

The Dorchester Hotel 392m

Curzon Mayfair Cinema 410m

Details

Telephone: 0203 147 7200

Website:

Cuisine: French

Lunch: £52 (3 Courses)

Dinner: £92/125/125 (5/7/9 courses)

Private Dining: 20

7.9

Food & Drink: 8.1

Service: 7.5

Atmosphere: 7.1

Value: 6.8

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 4.0

Joanna G. platinum reviewer 06 January 2016

I was treated to a meal here a few years ago and it is one of the most stand out meals I have ever had, but memory fades so I decided to treat my husband to the 3 course Festive Brunch for his birthday. The restaurant is very elegant, the staff are both attentive and discreet. As it was a brunch, the restaurant was never full while we were there, we opted for a late start and planned a long, leisurely meal. To start we had a glass of champagne each (£18), we were then told that when we were ready, to go and choose our "starters" from the salad and charcuterie bar (buffet style, but plated up by a waiter). All of the charcuterie, pâté, salads that we tasted were superb, but the duck terrine was particularly good, served with a lovely basket of bread. You then get to choose a main course from a menu - I opted for the crab cake with salad and my husband chose the "legendary" oxtail and foie gras burger (which he didn't quite finish), both were delicious. I must have told the restaurant that it was my husbands birthday as they appeared with a small lemon, meringue dessert with a candle and then took our photo and presented it to us with a note from Helene, which was a lovely touch. For the third course, you go to the dessert buffet table (we were both pretty full at this point but the waiters were determined to fill us up some more), we went for the smallest slices of that we could see (although they will make waffles and crepes to order with an abundance of toppings). We washed it all down with a lovely bottle of Albarino and then fell into a taxi home to put our feet up. If you combine the quantities of foie gras and the £265 bill, this brunch is not for the faint-hearted, but I would like to think we will visit again....

Food & Drink: 5.0

Service: 5.0

Atmosphere: 5.0

Value: 4.0

Dawn D. 27 November 2015

There is only one word to describe this restaurant.....fabulous.... from the moment of arrival to departure it was wonderful. Food scores 10 out of 10 along with the ambiance. Yes it is expensive but it is worth every penny in my opinion and for a special treat it is faultless. We had 5 courses with the wine pairing it each wine was a perfect match to each of the courses. Risotto did have a £45 per head add on for the white truffle and was again amazing, the scallop dish was perfection. I can't wait to visit again

Food & Drink: 5.0

Service: 5.0

Atmosphere: 5.0

Value: 5.0

Jo B. 28 February 2015

A delicious lunch for a special occasion. The food was fresh, interesting and exciting whilst the service was impeccable. Although this is fine dining at its very best the service was welcoming and kind, not stuffy and overly formal - even a birthday photo was taken and mounted in a card as a gift as well as a small birthday surprise pudding. Just delightful!

Food & Drink: 5.0

Service: 5.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 4.0

Monikasays gold reviewer 30 October 2014

The American saturday brunch at Helene Darroze at the Connaught is an experience every lady who lunches must try. This was a 40th birthday treat for a good friend and secretly for me… We had a planned a self-indulgent day of brunch first, then spa treatments in the intimate basement spa and pool of this very glamorous art deco hotel, perfectly poised behind Oxford St. Does life get any better? For about £50 one gets to sample Helene Darroze's finest brunch offerings in a smart London dining room. This is the gourmet buffet to beat all gourmet buffets. One starts with a transparent kettle of smooth sumptuous butternut squash soup, followed by an assortment of light salads accompanied by a superb charcuterie sliced 'a la minute' by an antique Berkel machine. Sometimes a bit of pomp is just the ticket at 11am! There are other home made terrines and plates of deliciousness. At this point we were already slightly stuffed so play the long game here. The next course is cooked and to order and choices include eggs benedict, crab cakes. lobster mac and cheese but I had to choose the almighty 'Connaught' Angus Aberdeen burger with fois gras and onion rings. This was vast, glorious and had a pulled beef sort of consistency, not for the faint hearted. Men would love this dish. Then the buffet of miniature 2- michelin starred desserts, how cute, how delicious, how moreish. Hot waffles are also an option with a melange of creams and sweet sauces. Next, cheese board, unfortunately we failed at this hurdle, game over. We were sated and ready for a food induced coma massage and probably in need of 200 laps of the miniature pool beneath us. Beware, 3 glasses of champers costs a whopping £45 here. This is a fab experience for the girls, or a birthday treat for your partner or bring your mum… pure belly-busting bliss.

Food & Drink: 5.0

Service: 5.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 4.0

Monikasays gold reviewer 30 October 2014

The American saturday brunch at Helene Darroze at the Connaught is an experience every lady who lunches must try. This was a 40th birthday treat for a good friend and secretly for me… We had a planned a self-indulgent day of brunch first, then spa treatments in the intimate basement spa and pool of this very glamorous art deco hotel, perfectly poised behind Oxford St. Does life get any better? For about £50 one gets to sample Helene Darroze's finest brunch offerings in a smart London dining room. This is the gourmet buffet to beat all gourmet buffets. One starts with a transparent kettle of smooth sumptuous butternut squash soup, followed by an assortment of light salads accompanied by a superb charcuterie sliced 'a la minute' by an antique Berkel machine. Sometimes a bit of pomp is just the ticket at 11am! There are other home made terrines and plates of deliciousness. At this point we were already slightly stuffed so play the long game here. The next course is cooked and to order and choices include eggs benedict, crab cakes. lobster mac and cheese but I had to choose the almighty 'Connaught' Angus Aberdeen burger with fois gras and onion rings. This was vast, glorious and had a pulled beef sort of consistency, not for the faint hearted. Men would love this dish. Then the buffet of miniature 2- michelin starred desserts, how cute, how delicious, how moreish. Hot waffles are also an option with a melange of creams and sweet sauces. Next, cheese board, unfortunately we failed at this hurdle, game over. We were sated and ready for a food induced coma massage and probably in need of 200 laps of the miniature pool beneath us. Beware, 3 glasses of champers costs a whopping £45 here. This is a fab experience for the girls, or a birthday treat for your partner or bring your mum… pure belly-busting bliss.

Food & Drink: 5.0

Service: 5.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 4.0

Chris R. 21 March 2014

What a fantastic experience! From the meeters-and-greeters, through the attentive bartender (while I was waiting for my guest), to the floor staff and the assistant head sommelier (Mirko Benzo), service was attentive, friendly and fun. Staff are all clearly passionate about what they do and are happy to see us diners enjoying and enthusing about the food and drinks. The food was great, and beautifully presented (as you would expect from a restaurant of this calibre). However, the desserts were mind-bogglingly good! Beautifully prepared, balanced and inventive. Petit fours were a real highlight too. All hand made on site and presented in a fun way. Coffee options were varied and well thought out, which is nice to see as this course can often (even in the best restaurants) be something of an afterthought. Wine matches were well thought out, explained well and really enhanced the overall experience. Cannot recommend this place enough…

Food & Drink: 5.0

Service: 2.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 3.0

Gourmand Gunno platinum reviewer 13 December 2013

Expectations run pretty high when visiting a restaurant with two Michelin stars and while the food at Helene Darroze utterly merited such an accolade, the service was disappointing and could be worked upon. The experience here is all about classic French dining in a luxurious setting. This is not for the young or trendy (or for those without deep pockets) and indeed the atmosphere at lunch was somewhat akin to hushed reverence. Whether this was a function of the clientele (mostly suits or well-heeled ladies who lunch) or the attitude imparted by the waiting staff was not clear, but I have certainly dined in many livelier locations. The attitude of the staff did indeed border slightly on the supercilious, almost suggesting that we – the diners – should be grateful for participating in this culinary experience. Against this background, one should certainly not expect to be brought the wrong bottle of wine or to have to wait inordinately long for the bill, having requested its twice. Despite these quibbles, however, the food (and wine – when it eventually arrived correctly) were absolutely stand-out. Our party of five all opted for the set lunch menu, offering a choice of three starters, mains and desserts. My oven-roast multi-coloured beetroots served along with wasabi-seasoned ricotta was both beautifully presented and executed with harmonious balance and flavour composition. My dining comrades were similarly pleased with their squash ravioli and venison gravlax options. The starters set the tone for the mains and my piece of beef was amazingly tender and paired with one of the richest and luxurious sauces I have ever sampled. Although the wine list was dauntingly large and would have better perused on an iPad (per Gordon Ramsey’s initiative and yet something the sommelier at the Connaught witheringly dismissed as a possibility), we found some lovely and reasonably well-priced options to pair with the food, a white from the Maconnais and a superb 2005 Leeuwin Estate Cab-Merlot from Western Australia. The sign of a good meal is undoubtedly when one is comfortably satisfied but not bloated by its conclusion and this fortunately proved the case here. Notwithstanding the wait for the bill, things ended on a high note: wonderful coffee from a dedicated menu (beans from locations as diverse as Honduras and Hawaii – although at £5, probably one of the most expensive espressos around) served along with a selection of chocolates/ sweets interestingly presented in old-style jars from a trolley. Small cakes to take away too was a nice final touch.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 4.0

JUNKO H. bronze reviewer 19 October 2013

very nice lunch and good value for birthday , enjoyed a lot with friend

Food & Drink: 5.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 5.0

Matt P. silver reviewer 25 July 2012

They've been serving Saturday brunch here for three years, but relaunched it in April 2012 to “bring it in line with our second Michelin star.” Here's my review in numbers: ● Amount of time spent at brunch: 3.5 glorious hours ● Calories consumed: 5000+ (burger with fresh foie gras was probably 1500 on its own) ● Percentage of dishes eaten out of all on offer: 60% ● Number of very charming waitstaff: 4 ● Number of times they attempted to get us to eat even more: 3 ● Marks for service I would have given them if only they'd warned me the glass of champagne wasn't free: 10 ● Ratio of diners to covers: 30% ● Price: £55pp + 12.5% service ● Number of different vintages on the armagnac trolley: 24 ● Likelihood of a return visit once I've lost weight: 100%

Food & Drink: 5.0

Service: 5.0

Atmosphere: 5.0

Value: 5.0

Steve H. 16 October 2011

What an amazing meal. The sumptuous surroundings of the Connaught are the perfect backdrop to a dining experience that is second to none. Helene Darroze and her team produced an experience that my partner and I will remember for a long time to come. After a friendly greeting and welcome glass of bubbles the amuse bouche told us we were in for a treat. Spanish ham cut off the bone in the restaurant with a Parmesan donut and a volute to die for got our taste buds screaming for more. We both chose the full Inspiration Menu, 9 taster dishes, all beautifully introduced by young and very knowledgeable waiters. The whole menu has a theme of real food with natural ingredients sourced from South West France and the UK blended in a sublime manner that blew us away. The tuna in a white garlic and almond sauce was divine; the terrine of foie gras was moist and perfectly matched with figs and jelly. The ravioli with ham and snails was moreish and the black and creamy rice with calamari and chorizo was the best dish yet. The creamy mariniere of mussels, girolles and spinach was more memorable than the sea bass on top if only for the amazing perfume of ginger and lemongrass that provided a real zing to the dish. The venison done three ways was superb and went perfectly with the Pommard I chose to accompany the meal. A cheese course of three cheeses with very appropriate accompaniments was highlighted with some organic creamy Stilton that just melted in the mouth. We are both not great fans of pineapple but the next dish of pineapple chunks, ice cream, lemon jelly and curry powder (yes curry powder) was outstanding. The final dish of chocolate creams, sorbets, sauces and cake was remarkable and we were both ready to fly the flag of surrender, we never made it to the petit fours and had to ask for a doggy bag or we would have burst. We had glasses each of an excellent Pully fuisse and the Pommard was an excellent choice for most of the dishes. Our only complaint if we can call it that was that at times it felt like a relentless succession of dishes and the occasional break would have been nice. Neither of us are American so time to savour each dish would have been nice and we calculated 11 mins per dish before it was all over. The portions were very generous and all in all it was excellent and hard to fault. Without question it was on a par with Gordon Ramsey’s at Hospital Road and the Waterside inn at Bray. Helene Darrozze deserves her place at the Connaught and watch out the old guard there is definitely a new kid on the block!

  • Hélène Darroze at The Connaught
  • Hélène Darroze at The Connaught
  • Sommelier s table with fountain view at Hélène Darroze at The Connaught
  • Sommelier s table at Hélène Darroze at The Connaught
  • Hélène Darroze at The Connaught table with cellar view
  • Hélène Darroze at The Connaught
  • Hélène Darroze at The Connaught
  • Hélène Darroze at The Connaught

Sommelier’s Table
Located in the hotel’s atmospheric wine cellar, this private room can hold a maximum of eight guests. The room's dedicated chef and the hotel's sommelier work together to create a special tasting menu with matching wines, which they serve to guests at the table. Guests can also expect a tour of the cellar and a souvenir menu or gift.

The Carlos Room
This bright room is situated on the ground floor with direct access from the hotel lobby.

The Carlos Room
Capacity: 20
Special offers

Dinner Formula: £55

From: 31 May 2018

To: 30 November 2018

Max: 2

Maximum of 2 diners. Includes Tax, excludes service.

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