Ekstedt at The Yard

Scandinavian, Swedish·
££££
·
Silver Award

SquareMeal Review of Ekstedt at The Yard

Silver Award

Niklas Ekstedt has brought the concept behind his eponymous Michelin-starred restaurant to Scotland Yard Hotel in Westminster. For those who aren’t familiar with the Swedish chef’s work, Ekstedt’s ethos is focused around open-fire cooking with a focus on Scandinavian techniques. It's been done before in London, but Ekstedt's offering feels totally unique.

This is a restaurant that’s practically exploding with warmth - in every sense of the word. Interiors-wise, the dining room feels like a wintry grotto awash with a sea of amber tones, from wooden furnishings to exposed brick walls, tan leather booths and golden lighting. Then, there’s the general temperature, which teeters slightly above toasty thanks to a ginormous wood-fuelled oven and roaring fire pit located to one end of the room. The motif continues with the service, which is friendly and understated in an approachable way. Even our cocktails are a beautiful bronze colour and imbued with the heady sweetness of amaretto.

Traditional techniques such as smoking, pickling and fermenting are used to some degree in every dish. On paper, one might find the food unfamiliar and a little unnerving, but any suspicions are sure to evaporate after the first bite. Things begin with smoky pieces of jerky-like reindeer, thin shavings of pickled salsify, and spongy sourdough served with gooey butter, plus a whey and pine oil dip. All are very good. Next, earthy, ember-baked trout is paired with soft, pickled shallots, salty vendace roe and a crème fraiche-like charcoal cream which is tangy and rich. Elsewhere, juniper-smoked halibut arrives swimming in seaweed butter, while a wood-oven baked Alaska is finished at the table by setting a spoon of aquavit alight and brandishing it over the pudding. It’s harsh with booze and engulfed in a marshmallow-like layer of meringue that tastes just like it's been freshly toasted on a campfire.

Ekstedt delights in its unorthodoxy and, while it won’t necessarily be for everyone, takes guests on an experiential journey of new flavours, pioneering techniques and theatrical embellishments.

Good to know

Average Price
££££ - Over £80
Cuisines
Scandinavian, Swedish
Ambience
Cosy, Dark and moody, Fine dining, Luxury, Romantic, Unique
Other Awards
SquareMeal London Top 100
Food Occasions
Dinner
Special Features
Gluten-free options, Vegetarian options
People
Celebrations, Dates, Group dining [8+], Romantic, Special occasions

About

Multi-award-winning Michelin starred Swedish chef Niklas Ekstedt has taken over the main restaurant at Great Scotland Yard Hotel in Westminster to bring his unique cooking style to the capital. The site was previously run by Robin Gill (of Darby’s, Sorella and Bermondsey Larder) but some time during the haze of lockdown it closed its door.

Now reimagined as a fine dining destination the restaurant retains its open kitchen where the team works over open wood fires to turn out plates of Scandinavian cuisine. Despite the staunchly northern European theme, the menu has been especially developed to make use of local, seasonal produce. British ingredients feature in signature dishes, where they’re transformed into Swedish-inspired creations inspired by Ekstedt's original eponymous restaurant in Stockholm.

The main billing is tasting menus at Ekstedt, so it lends itself as a special occasion destination or client entertaining spot best. Six courses are expertly crafted to run from lighter dishes and seafood courses through to mains that feature rich meats and chocolate-centric desserts. Example starters include hay smoked venison with lingonberries and thyme emulsion or seaweed baked leek with smoked trout roe. 

As you work your way down the menu you’ll find delicious ingredients like smoked wild duck (served with fire baked beetroot and onion tart) as well as grilled red mullet with fennel gravy and sea herbs. Sweets bring creations like a coffee mousse or unexpected buckwheat waffles with cloudberry ice cream. 

While the tasting menu can be served solo there’s also the option to add a beverage pairing where the sommelier chosen flight is picked from a pioneering wine list. Elsewhere there’s a non-alcoholic pairing which allows abstainers and designated drivers to partake in the theatre of the full drinking and dining experience.

Currently the restaurant is open for dinner service Tuesday to Saturday from mid-afternoon through to late evening.


FAQs

Who is the head chef?

Michelin starred Niklas Ekstedt runs the kitchen, overseeing the team.

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How much does it cost to eat there?

The six-course tasting menu costs £115.

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Location

3-5 Great Scotland Yard, Westminster, London, SW1A 2HN

020 7925 4749 020 7925 4749

Website

Opening Times

Dinner
Mon Closed
Tue 18:00-21:00
Wed 18:00-21:00
Thu 18:00-21:00
Fri 18:00-21:00
Sat 18:00-21:00
Sun Closed

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