Update - The launch is nearly upon us, and many of the dates have now sold out. LQ has added an additional very special date in West London on Saturday 9th November - full details here
I can't begin to tell you how excited I am about this one. This October and November, for seven dinners & two brunches, LA pop-up pioneer Laurent Quenioux (aka LQ) is collaborating with Chateau Marmot in East London. LQ is incredibly well respected in the US - you only need to look at his reviews (e.g. this amazing one in Huffington Post) and his pics on Instagram to see why - and Chateau Marmot are one of the best regulars in London, so to have them coming together is so great. Where people have come over previously (French Laundry, Noma) it's been very, very expensive, while this time it's less than £50 for a six course dinner, and brunch for less than £25. Do it!
"LA’s king of pop-ups partners with London’s rising stars Chateau Marmot for eight nights of inspiring food, music and fun in a beautiful, secret, E1 location this November…
“BISTRO LQ is the restaurant of my dreams, a place for the adventurous foodlover who appreciates small details, world-fusion food with big flavours, and a chef with a passion for creating masterpieces”
– Huffington Post
Driven by the city’s ravenous appetite for the new, LA’s favourite pop-up restaurant pioneer Laurent Quenioux (LQ) gave up a highly lauded permanent gig to become a roaming chef a couple of years back. Partnering with unusual venues (rooftop at Barney’s anyone?) all over the city to create stunning food, partnering his Michelin starred French background with the Californian spirit of adventure. Recent dishes like cold-poached Maquereau, goat cheese varnish & English peas chantilly or Kentucky fried quail with green asparagus tonka and bean espuma set him apart from the crowd. Hush-hush events like his ‘420’ dinners: nine course cannabis-tasting menus seal the deal. The critics are united, with the LA Times, LA Weekly, The New Yorker and Huffington Post all singing chef Quenioux’s praises, he’s even appeared on USA TV’s guilty pleasure, Top Chef. Those in the know on the UK scene have also taken note, like LondonPopups.com owner Dan Calladine, as he explains, “I’ve been following LQ for a while and we’ve been in touch discussing the idea of bringing him over, I’m really pleased he’s found a home at Chateau Marmot, another pop-up we’ve supported since the start. Absolutely can’t wait for these events”
For eight nights only in November LQ @ Chateau Marmot will feature LQ and his team of LA based chefs creating a stunning six-course tasting menu, partnered with carefully chosen matched wines from independent suppliers for a very reasonable £49.
London diners are no doubt in for a wild ride, but nothing inspires him more than perfectly matched flavours and what he finds at the markets each morning. In Chef Quenioux’s own words:
"I could not be more excited to do our first dining event in the UK. My team and I aim to dazzle London diners by meshing the unique L.A. flavors we love with the local ingredients they love."
London’s Chateau Marmot is a roaming restaurant that tours the UK and beyond, making a culinary snapshot of the time and place that it appears. LQ and Chateau Marmot share a desire to provide the very best creative cuisine for a fair price, without the stuffiness and formality usually associated with fine dining. In fact it was a trip to LQ’s pop-up at LA’s Starry Kitchen that provided that initial spark for their own venture, as Theo explains:
“We were in Downtown, on a deserted street in the financial district. In the shadow of The Wells Fargo building we found LQ @ SK, like an oasis in the gloom. This cute little street food café, with it’s brilliantly crazy proprietor swearing and lamenting the fact he wasn’t wearing a banana suit that day provided the perfectly surreal setting for one of the best meals we’ve eaten anywhere, for any price. We knew we had to bring that to the UK.”
The menu will be regularly changing across the period drawing on the finest British seasonal and local produce available, including of course indulging LQ’s passion for the UK’s game season. There will also be several collaborations with Chateau M’s chefs including two special tasting menu brunches, a joint menu from LQ and Ottolenghi/Nopi exec-chef Ramael Scully. Matching cocktails will be available plus coffee by Caravan, Exmouth. In the signature style of both LQ and Chateau M all events will feature a spectacular cheeseboard with house-made jams, jellies and relishes.
All nights will feature a soundtrack of live music curated in partnership with international music collective Sofar Sounds (sofarsounds.com). There will also be contemporary art displayed from some of the capital’s most exciting artists."
When - Six Course dinner, 7.30pm on 31st Oct, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 6th, 7th, 8th, 14th November
Brunch, bookings from 12pm Nov 1st, 2nd
Where - A secret location in E1
Tickets - Six Course Tasting Evening £49, Wine flights from £27. Four course Brunch, £24. Cocktails from £6 from Grub Club here
Link 1 - Tickets page
Link 2 - Chateau Marmot
Link 3 - LQ on Twitter
Link 4 - LQ on Instagram
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