Nose-to-tail comes to Piccadilly

St John restaurant is decamping to Fortnum and Mason in Piccadilly next month while its base near Smithfield Market is refurbished.

The residency – the first in Fortnums’ long history – brings together two icons of British gastronomy: the victualler to royalty, most famous now for its afternoon teas, was founded as long ago as 1707, while St John has pioneered the concept of ‘nose-to-tail’ eating in the past 30 years under chef Fergus Henderson (left in picture with co-founder Trevor Gulliver).

The St John team will recreate the famous Smithfield interior inside the Field restaurant in Fortums’ ground-floor mezzanine – bringing the stark-but-chic aesthetic of white walls with wooden coat pegs to a building better known for its florid interiors. The utilitarian tables and chairs will even be moved across town for the duration.

St John co-founder Trevor Gulliver says: “Smithfield may be closed, but it is not absent – for these three weeks we must not neglect our duty to provide our community with their vital St. JOHN fix, from a flying rarebit and a Fergroni in the bar to rolling courses in the dining room. This little jaunt feels rather frivolous, which is Fortnum’s forte. Painting it white is a bit cheeky – and a bit of cheekiness is always a good foundation for an extremely good time.

St John will be at Fortnum’s from February 6 to 25, from breakfast (bacon sandwiches), and lunch to pre-theatre dinner (closing 6.30 during the week; 8.30 at weekends).

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