Restaurant writer Theo Tritsarolis checks into Grosvenor Square's speakeasy Luggage Room to try an indulgent experience not to be missed...
Speakeasy-style bars normally elicit an eye-roll and visions of sullen bouncers staring glumly through grated doors. You’d be a fool to misjudge London Marriott Hotel Grosvenor Square’s repurposed Luggage Room on this preconception. Bringing the lavish style of the roaring twenties seamlessly together with the creature comforts of high-society's low tea has created an indulgent experience not to be missed.
The entrance itself, is found in the corner of Grosvenor Square, and although the traditional speakeasy hallmark of a knock is required, you will be greeted by a smiling server rather than with cheap imitation of Berghain's Sven Marquardt . The door leads through into a plush, welcoming interior; damier ebene styled walls hark back to the bars’ original purpose, while a Carrara marble floor adds discreet opulence.
Low Tea itself, served between 12pm - 4pm Wednesday through Sunday, is a delicate but indulgent affair. Presented in bespoke old fashioned cases that open on three tiers to display numerous dainty curiosities, such as New Forest mushroom, thyme and creme fraiche tarts, a Devilled Balmoral Venison and Clarence Court Scotch egg, and sumptuous Tiptree jarred scone trifles to name but a few.
Knowledgeable staff helped match mine and my guest’s tastes to the tea selection created in partnership with Camellias Tea Company, with varieties from across the globe. I opted for a White Apricot brew, an interestingly light, Gold Taste award winning fusion tea that combines apricot with the sweetness of white tea, although traditionalists will be pleased to know that Breakfast tea and an Earl Grey substitute in the form of a Signature Speakeasy Black tea are available on the menu.
Bar Manager, Joshua Cowan along with the bar members has contrived a cocktail list that nods a nostalgic head to the traditions and crafts of the Twenties and old drinking culture of England. I found the Jack Rose to be a particularly refreshing and slightly zingy libation between courses, although the Punch a la Romaine; a scoop of homemade citrus sorbet dissolved into champagne was another delightfully crafted yet punchy concoction on the menu.
Speakeasy-style bar ventures in the capital have been rife with cringe-worthy clichés and anachronistic cocktail menus. Fortunately the Luggage Room has deftly avoided these pitfalls and instead created a relaxing haven in the heart of Mayfair, serving up some of the most creatively delicious treats I've had the pleasure of consuming. You must go.
Low Tea within the Luggage Room starts from £48
London Marriott Hotel Grosvenor Square
Grosvenor Square, London W1K 6JP
QH RESTAURANT REVIEW:
The Luggage Room
by Theo Tritsarolis, 2 August 2016