We frequently visit The Ivy in its various locations and guises across the UK. From Marlow to Marylebone, they achieve something fairly unique in the modern restaurant scene; each restaurant has its own distinct identity, yet leans on the comforts of knowing exactly what food will be on the menu. The Ivy Chelsea Gardenis no different; well, the same menu, but served in a seemingly endless space that fuses French brasserie with English country garden. You can sit inside, inside but outside, or completely outside tucked away in one of the huge hedges that skirt a garden that would be the envy of most restaurants. The outdoor space is certainly the main attraction; huge pergolas, serene water features, and beautiful little tables sheltered by umbrellas.
Food here is your typical Ivy fare. Katie went for the Crispy Duck Salad to start, which is always her favourite and once again did not disappoint. The five-spice dressing and roasted cashews add plenty of flavour, while the chunks of watermelon mean the dish stays cool. Keeping with the duck theme, I went for the Duck Liver Parfait which was a huge serving which came with just enough toasted brioche if you spread the duck thickly enough. The caramelised hazelnuts and a hint of their signature truffle adding subtle flavours to a very rich dish; very French indeed.
For mains, Katie chose the Veal Paillard. There was plenty of meat on the plate which is always a bonus, and the rocket with parmesan gave the dish a very light taste. I decided to go vegetarian; the Chargrilled Halloumi with Padrón Peppers being the standout dish of the day. It was perhaps a little salty for my taste (I am very sensitive to salt), but even with that in mind, the dish was full of variety and flavour. The chilli and mint sauced packed plenty of flavour, and I would highly recommend this to vegetarians and meat-eaters alike.
As a side note, The Ivy Chelsea Garden also serves a number of great cocktails at a very affordable price. The newly launched Summer floral cocktails are served with a signature flower as a garnish (a great nod to the theme here), but even the classics never fail to disappoint. Gin is always a go-to base spirit as The Ivy seem too really nail their gin cocktails; the Camomile Garden adding hints of honey, kaffir lime leaf and orange to the classic G&T. Oh, and its served in a huge balloon glass so there’s plenty to savour.
You can check out The Ivy Chelsea Garden here, and it’s a great place to grab a bite to eat if you want to escape the chaos of Kings Road.