A two-Michelin-starred ‘chef’s table’ experience awaits those who venture into this semi-secret dining space behind a brown leather curtain at the back of funky Bubbledogs. True to its name, KT’s U-shaped counter fits snugly around the kitchen, where up to 20 diners can perch on stools, elbow-to-elbow with their neighbours, watching and listening to James Knappett’s team as they describe, prepare (and often serve) the day’s menu – there are no written prompts, so you need to pay attention.
Nibbles of chicken skin with bacon jam or radishes on a cracker with potato-skin gel generally open the show, while each of the subsequent 12 courses is described by a single word on the blackboard (‘oyster, radish, shrimp… beetroot, cherry, rhubarb’).
That said, the results are bold, ultra-modern and ingeniously balanced: sea trout might be paired with green almonds and fennel, while a dish simply entitled ‘duck’ might see a fleshy pink slab cut from a whole roast bird alongside a hemisphere of BBQ roast apricot dotted with thyme leaves, plus a sauce involving grated apricot kernel.
James’ partner/sommelier Sandia Chang takes care of the 100-bin wine list, and her custom-built food-matching suggestions are bang on target. Naturally, there’s also much plundering of the exclusive ‘grower’ Champagnes on offer at Bubbledogs’ bar. “A-plus from start to finish”, raves a fan.