In case you’re a bad child and haven’t noticed, this weekend it’s Mothering Sunday. With that in mind Harden’s has the definitive roundup of fab places to show your old ma that all those years making you hold your knife and fork right have paid off at last. Surprise, spoil and delight her with an indulgent lunch, brunch, afternoon tea, and perhaps a glass (or two) of bubbly… And remember to post the card!
Champagne breakfast: £25 pp
Sunday lunch: £24-28 pp
“Excels in every way”; this “enterprising” and “pleasant” favourite, near Balham station, is a “wonderful” and “sensibly priced” operation – “more relaxed than Chez Bruce, but snapping at its heels in terms of quality”. This Mothers’ Day treat your mum to their champagne breakfast with canapés upon arrival and chilled glass of Gosset Brut Excellence, Buck’s Fizz or Lamberts’ infused Bloody Mary. Alternatively try their Sunday lunch menu, served noon-9pm. Start the celebration with a Mothers’ Delight ‘seasonal sharpener’ of prosecco, elderflower and basil.
All-day Sunday menu: £18-22 pp
“Tucked away in a quiet Westminster backstreet, but known by those in the know”, this Sardinian yearling is becoming “a firm favourite” – it’s run by “very welcoming” people, and its “simple” food is “authentic” and “affordable”. A special Mother’s Day menu is available 12.30-3.30pm and 6-9.30pm.
Sunday lunch: £55 pp
The “nooks and crannies” of this “quirky” but “sumptuous” St James’s room add to its possibilities as a business or romantic venue; best to visit for the “good-value lunch”, though – evening prices for William Drabble’s “high-quality” cuisine can be “alarming”. Seven Park Place will open for a one-off Sunday service noon-2pm. As well as a three-course meal, mum will enjoy a complimentary glass of champagne and a special gift.
Also open for a special one-off Sunday service on Mother’s Day (noon-3pm) is this venerable Gallic classic in the heart of Soho. L’Escargot, now under new ownership, was transformed following a major refurb last year. On the menu: l’escargots; lobster and fennel bisque; roast rib of Scotch beef with Yorkshire pudding and their famous coq au vin. Desserts include tarte au citron with clotted cream and crème brulée.
If only all hotel makeovers were as successful as the rejuvenation of this “spacious” Belgravia dining room – “a high quality traditional experience”, now offering what fans say is “the best roast beef in London”, albeit at “huge” cost. The special Mother’s Day menu includes a selection of traditional British fare, including: Loch Fyne oak smoked salmon, The Rib Room’s signature roast rib of Aberdeen Angus beef with Yorkshire pudding, and raspberry soufflé drizzled with white chocolate sauce.
This faux-rustic chain whose “truly British” and “seasonal” menu has “improved” of late is treating all mums to a complementary Cutter & Squidge Biskie when they dine at one of its restaurants on Mother’s Day. The biskies are uniquely handmade and filled with a special lightened buttercream, handmade jams, caramels and other delights.
Lunch: £37.50 pp – mums eat free!
“Creative” and “tasty” fare has helped this Vietnamese newcomer make quite a splash; located on Soho’s main drag, it’s aiming to be a “cool venue for a young crowd”, but can suffer from “a lack of atmosphere”. Mothers eat for free when dining with a minimum of three other people and all diners will receive unlimited prosecco with the set menu, served from noon.
Lunch: £70 pp
Afternoon tea: £55 pp
“Such an improvement since we last dined here!”; if you’re looking for “fantasyland-perfect” grandeur, the dining room of this famous Thames-view palazzo is hard to beat, and – under the new chef, who used to work for the Galvin brothers’ empire – the food is beginning to measure up. Try their three course ‘Mothering Lunch’ or champagne afternoon tea… followed by a stroll around the National Trust gardens, of course. Both menus include a gift for mum.
The “smart” and “spacious” dining room of this new(ish) grand hotel, off Trafalgar Square, deserves to be more widely known – it’s “a little pricey”, but “on a good day, provides top ingredients, simply cooked!” This Mothering Sunday enjoy free flowing Laurent Perrier champagne with your three course ‘live jazz’ brunch.
“High-end Indian food cooked to perfection” and “incredibly helpful” staff help win rave reports for this “extremely civilised” and “classy” Mayfair stalwart; if there is a reservation, it’s the basement setting. Try something a little different on Sunday 15 March and take your mum for an Indian lunch. Dishes include: grilled Tandoor chicken, spiced lamb cakes, ‘dum pukht’ (slow cooked) lamb shoulder; rose petal kheer (rice pudding) and spiced chocolate and orange tart.
For true extravagance you can’t get much more indulgent than The Ritz. The iconic hotel’s Mother’s Day Extravagance package includes a choice a 75 minute Elemis Skin Solution Facial, followed by a glass of champagne and manicure, as well as an exclusive Elemis Pure Rose Indulgence gift set to take home. The offer is available throughout the month of March.
Or, if you’d rather bring your mum breakfast in bed then why not try a luxury hamper from the Caprice Group’s deli? It comes equipped with everything you need including a mixing bowl, wooden spoon, spatula, pancake ingredients, fresh berries and chocolate buttons. You need to order your hamper 48 hours in advance by calling 020 7499 6843. Delivery is free in W1 and St James’s.
The Caprice Group have got plenty more Mother’s Day events happening. Every mum who comes to Daphne’s for lunch gets a bunch of daffodils, while Balthazar is offering breakfast in bed goodie bags as well as a range of celebration cakes. Again these need to be ordered in advance. Call 020 3301 1155 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Or how about a visit to this “spectacular” South Kensington venture with its “imaginative” Asian/French cuisine. On the Mother’s Day menu: miso marinated quail, mustard ice cream & pumpkin fondant; North Sea crispy squid with chilli & spring onion; confit Pyrenées lamb shoulder, grilled vegetables & aubergine caviar and chocolate fondant with green tea ice cream.