In London for Mother’s Day? I am, and finding the best place for a Mother's Day lunch for my interior designer mum is always at the top of my list come March. Thankfully the capital has a lot to offer—from classic favourites to trendy new establishments—and most of them are geared up for the big day with a special Mother's Day menu.
Prioritising excellent design, food and service, these hotspots are sure to guarantee a memorable day for your main lady.
Located in the heart of Marylebone lies an irresistible dining experience combining innovate food with an intimate atmosphere. Executive Chef Konstantinos Rampias has created a menu that is free from refined sugar and is conscious to limit its dairy and gluten use. Instead, the menu is filled with fresh and mindfully sourced ingredients.
With it's feminine touches and natural elements, AOK has the perfect atmosphere for a Mother's Day lunch. One thing’s for sure: when you visit everything is going to be A.O.K.
52-55 Dorset Street, London W1U 7NQ9; 0203 889 9400; www.aokkitchen.co.uk
Sketch's notoriously instagramable pink interior has had a recent facelift. This time, interior designer India Mahdavi has enveloped the space in a similarly delightful yellow and has adorned the walls with the work of Anglo-Nigerian artist Yinka Shonibare.
Enjoy either afternoon tea or dinner as you take in the new surroundings. But I'd hurry, if the previous interior's success is anything to go by, it will be booked out for weeks ahead.
9 Conduit St, London W1S 2XG; 02076594500; www.Sketch.co.uk
Another Martin Brudnizki Design Studio creation, Daphne’s elegant interiors deserve newfound appreciation in the aftermath of the caned furniture renaissance which it’s been working for years. The charming Italian favourite is a prime Mother’s Day spot and, come 22nd March, it’s set to be cheerier than ever.
The wonderfully located South Kensington mainstay (apres-brunch shopping anyone?) is sure to be teeming with pretty touches and faultless service sure to thrill any mother. On the menu is a celebratory “Mamma Mia” concoction of Konik’s Tail Vodka, Cointreau, Maraschino, Lime juice, cranberry and orange bitter, and Miraculous Foamer as well as a passion fruit and Amadei chocolate semifreddo.
112 Draycott Avenue, London SW3 3AE. 020 7589 4257; www.daphnes-restaurant.co.uk
Hélène Darroze at the Connaught
Reopened in October 2019 after a two-month hiatus, Hélène Darroze at the Connaught is back on the short list for top Mother’s Day restaurants in London with a newer, more playful vibe. The Pierre Yovanovitch redesign exchanges the restaurant’s previous style—a thoroughly British one—for a not-so-serious salmon pink, library-meets-Wes Anderson one. The result is a space which channels modern French elegance and emphasises the inherent femininity of Chef Darroze’s creations.
Although not offering a special Mother’s Day menu, per se, the current à la carte menu provides more than enough to satisfy most palates. The 5 (£120) or 7 (£160) course menu features a brown and spider crabs accompanied by pomelo, lampong pepper and “txangurro”, a celeriac, brioche, Vin jaune d’Arbois guinea fowl dish, sea bass with clams, citrus, chard and dashi vinegar, and a signature baba. Special menu or not, there’s no denying that Hélène Darroze at the Connaught is a new Mother’s Day favourite.
The Connaught, Carlos Pl, Mayfair, London W1K 2AL. 020 7499 7070; the-connaught.co.uk
The Ivy Kensington Brasserie
The demise of the dapperly designed Kensington Pavilion twinged the heart of interior enthusiasts slightly but any regrets were thoroughly dealt with when hospitality design maestro Martin Brudnizki stepped in as part of the venue’s Ivy reboot.
Darkly handsome millwork and antique glass mirror columns punctuate the space, zoning the main dining area, hanging globe pendants line up in rows and rich teal and mustard leather upholstery enhances the diamond marble flooring. The result is a casual Saturday Ivy vibe with feels-like-your-local service (although more refined) and classic brunch options.
Favourite menu items for a Mother’s Day treat include lobster benedict, chicken Milanese or, if you’re looking to be really naughty, the build-your-own waffles.
96 Kensington High St, Kensington, London W8 4SG. 020 3301 0500; www.theivykensingtonbrasserie.com
Refreshingly pretty, Spring at the glorious Somerset House is the quintessential Mother’s Day restaurant; indeed, Mothering Sunday is the only Sunday it opens all year. The pastel-hued restaurant (which is housed in the building’s restored 19th century drawing room) champions lightness and femininity with its airy space in which colour is used with restraint and design choices are reduced down to their very essence.
Decor aside, the restaurant is backed by some serious culinary talent having been created by Skye Gyngell of Petersham Nursery fame—the one responsible for its Michelin star. (It’s worth noting, too, that the restaurant’s design just so happens to be the work of Gyngell’s sister Briony Fitzgerald.) The menu items are appropriately elegant and include Cornish mackerel carpaccio with Sicilian mandarin, agretti, fennel and chervil; Ricotta dumplings with buttered leeks, farro, ricotta salata and crispy sage; and Rhubarb jelly with muscat cream and roasted rhubarb. Each mother will receive a complimentary rose petal bellini to celebrate.
Somerset House, Lancaster Pl, London WC2R 1LA. 020 3011 0115; springrestaurant.co.uk
The Petersham/La Goccia
Speaking of Petersham, the much-loved restaurant group now has two outposts in the city which brings the great outdoors slightly closer than its Richmond garden centre location. And where better to set up these new memorable moment go-tos than London’s central-most home of flowers, Covent Garden?
Slightly different in style, The Petersham and La Goccia—fine à la carte dining versus all day casual dining, respectively—both adhere to the group’s admirable Slow Food philosophy of Good, Clean and Fair.
For Mother’s Day, The Petersham will offer a set menu which includes artichoke alla Giudia with sage and lemon, fillet of Cornish hake with white polenta and saffron mussels and rhubarb and vanilla mascarpone tart. La Goccia will present a sharing menu designed for a minimum of two guests to share (which means dad can come along too!)
2 Floral St, Covent Garden, London WC2E 9FB. 020 7305 7676; petershamnurseries.com