When I was in London a few weeks ago I was walking down the Kings Road just past Chelsea Town Hall and when I got a little further down to where Henry J Beans used to be, I had to do a double take. Gone was the tired old American style bar, and in its place was now The Ivy Chelsea Garden – a super smart new outpost of that long-famed West End restaurant, The Ivy.
The iconic Grade II listed building that houses The Ivy Chelsea Garden has been sensitively and substantially refurbished by Martin Brudnizki Design Studio which was established by interior designer, Martin Brudnizki. The building dates back to 1722 when it was a licensed public house known as the Six Bells and was famous for the bowling green which the pub backed onto, and where a local bowling club had its headquarters.
The fact that a bowling green was located directly behind the pub gives an idea of the space involved. As part of the renovation programme, the garden has been completely transformed by Anthony Challis and Dan Curran of Ginkgo Gardens, and encompasses trailing wisteria and climbing roses adorning the garden’s pergolas, stone clad fountains and leafy trellises.
The extensive garden, despite being only moments from the hustle and bustle of the Kings Road, offers a tranquil haven of peace where you can enjoy al fresco dining all year round.
The restaurant is made up of various areas, each with a distinctive character. These include a bar and bar lounge, café, restaurant, orangery, terrace and garden.
MBDS have cleverly combined vintage with luxury, resulting in a space that is both inviting and down-to-earth. I love the fact you can eat at the bar at The Ivy Chelsea Garden – it makes the dining experience much less formal and more fun in a way.
The hugely enjoyable cocktail list includes a combination of classics and some inventive concoctions which the bar team has come up with including Blacklands Buck – a warming, spicy blend of Chivas Regal 12 yr, honey, ginger juice, a touch of aromatic bitters and tempranillo as well as the Punk Revival martini – a punchy blend of Olmeca Reposado Tequila, Cocchi Americano, Antica Formula and orange bitters.
The booths are so comfortable and beautifully appointed and the stunning architectural prints and botanical drawings give the space a really relaxed and timeless appeal.
The all-day, casual British brasserie with an all-encompassing menu including Ivy-inspired classics, modern British and international dishes is served from dawn till dusk over breakfast, elevenses, lunch, afternoon tea, dinner and weekend brunch.
The menu serves modern British and international dishes from dawn till dusk – this is the Rack of lamb comprising herb crusted lamb with fondant potato, minted sugar snaps and lamb jus.
If you’d like to visit booking is recommended although half the tables are set aside for walk-ins so if like me you are passing by, do call in, they are open Monday-Saturday 8am-11:30pm and Sundays 9am-10:30pm.
The Ivy Chelsea Garden, 197 King’s Road, London SW3 5ED. Tel: 020 3301 0300.
Image credit: Paul Winch-Furness