The Mandarin Oriental at Hyde Park is a special hotel for Amit and I, as it was the first hotel we (accidentally) ever stayed at when we were dating. Accidentally, because we were actually booked at another hotel in Knightsbridge, that had an error with our booking and so moved us to the Mandarin Oriental instead. It was a happy move and we had the most incredible stay, and have been Fans of MO ever since!
It seemed fitting to spend one of our date nights at the recently refurbished and very aesthetically stunning Mandarin Bar, with its lovely copper tones, elegant and classy looks and extremely glamorous decor.
We had been invited to try the new cocktail offerings, and the menu was extensive, with with ingredients influenced by plants and trees found in neighbouring Hyde Park. They all sounded so unique and interesting and so we enlisted the help of Rodolphe, the bar manager, for some recommendations.
I tried the Maple Bowl, which was a delicious blend of Smith & Cross Traditional Rum, Punt w Mes, Maple Syrup and Fernet Branca. A rum lover’s dream!
Amit had the Butterfly Gimlet, which was a mix of JJ Whitley Nettle Gin, Nettle Cordial, Lime, Absinthe and Mint, and it tasted delicious.
While we enjoyed our first round of drinks we indulged in some of the delicious dishes available on the Bar Menu. I had tried them before when I was at the Mandarin Oriental for the launch of their Jazz evenings at The Rosebery Lounge, but this was Amit’s first time trying them and so I was excited to see what he thought.
My favourite, from when I tried them before, was the Pea Croquette, served with Pea Puree and Wakame Mayonnaise. Just so delicious!
Seafood lovers would adore the Crab Eclair, made with Portland Crab, Tarragon and Bisque Glaze and served as a classic Eclair.
The Hedonist Sandwich, was also one of my highlights the last time, and it was a hit with Amit with its dreamy combination of Iberico Ham, Brie Cheese andTruffle Butter all sandwiched in Toasted Tomato Bread.
Amit’s favourite, and so good that he ordered it twice, was the Tuna Poke with fresh Avocado and served creatively in a Taco Shell. It was incredible, and for me, the most fussy person when it comes to Tuna, that is a huge compliment.
Our final dish was the Steam Club, which was Chicken served on a fluffy bun with Kimchi Mayonnaise and topped with Quail Egg. This was really flavoursome and I absolutely adore Kimchi so I was a very happy girl with the Kimchi Mayonnaise.
In between our dishes, we tried a small portion of the The Elm, which was barrel-aged Bols Genever, mixed with pineapple and pomegranate juice, falerum syrup, lime and elm tincture. It was so delicious! It is normally served in a long glass.
Our final tipple selection of the evening was a Champagne cocktail for me, called the Chrysanthemum. This was beautifully presented and made with Chrysanthemum gin, St Germain, peach syrup and Möet and Chandon Grand Vintage 2009 champagne.
Amit tried the Silver Birch, which was made from Freya Birch, Sherry, Lemon, Rosemary, Luxardo Maraschino and topped with Ginger Beer.
We had an incredible evening in the stylish venue, and will definitely be back for more date nights to try some more of the cocktails, as they all sound so intriguing!
For more information about The Mandarin Bar, you can visit their website here.
We were guests of Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park and our experience was complimentary.