Swan, Shakespeare’s Globe Re-Launches to Coincide with Shakespeare400
Following an extensive refurbishment and to coincide with Shakespeare400, – a major programme of events developed by a consortium of leading cultural, creative and educational organisations marking the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death in 2016 – Swan, Shakespeare’s Globe reopened its doors with a fresh, vibrant new look.
Bringing a new menu, focusing on provenance, seasonality and simplicity Swan, Shakespeare’s Globe showcases the best of classic British dishes, with a contemporary twist. Situated on Bankside, overlooking the River Thames, this all-day restaurant, bar and private events space boasts unrivalled views across St Paul’s Cathedral and the City of London.
The kitchen team have used the highest quality seasonal British ingredients, sourced from across the UK. All of the cured meats on the menu come from Cobble Lane, a London based modern charcuterie that prides itself on superior quality and flavour. London Honey Co delivers directly to the restaurant from their various hives across central London, the cheese is all sourced from the Somerset Cheese Company and Cornwall’s finest fish and shellfish is transported straight from sea to plate by Fish for Thought, as well as oysters from Wright Brothers.
Signature dishes from the main menu include starters such as Cider battered oysters, Salt baked heritage beetroot, smoked ricotta, pickled walnuts and London honey and Jerusalem artichoke soup, with hazelnut and spinach pesto, and mains including; Cornish fish stew with Norfolk saffron potatoes and garlic mayonnaise, Beef Wellington with savoy cabbage, carrots and a Madeira and truffle jus and Cod, with a hazelnut crust, sea beets, fish and parsley broth. Desserts on offer feature Vanilla yoghurt panna cotta with Yorkshire rhubarb and juniper meringue, Orange and cardamom polenta cake with blood orange and crème fraîche and a Dark chocolate delice with salted hazelnut ganache and chocolate ice cream.
In keeping with the best of British, a selection of cocktails inspired by British seasonal ingredients are on offer, such as the Swan Spritz: Kamm & Sons, elderflower, prosecco and soda; Swan Collins: a blend of Bulldog gin, fresh blackberries, rosemary, lemon juice and ginger beer and a Somerset Sazerac: Somerset Cider Brandy, Absinthe and Peychaud’s bitters. An extensive wine list is also available, including both great value and more exclusive wines from around the world, all of which are housed in Swan’s newly installed, glass fronted, wine room: located on the first floor.
The perfect pit-stop for breakfast, or brunch following a weekend stroll, the morning menu, served in the ground floor bar area offers an array of modern, British breakfast dishes including; Roast squash, wild cabbage and heritage potato hash and fried Legbar egg, Toasted sourdough with Cobble Lane sobrasada and fried egg, and Yoghurt, with compote and buckwheat granola, as well as fresh smoothies for those seeking a healthier boost. In addition to the breakfast, lunch and dinner menu, the restaurant continues to offer a three-course pre-theatre menu, as well as a seasonal afternoon tea.
Located in close proximity to both London Bridge and Blackfriars stations, the venue features a large open plan bar downstairs, and restaurant upstairs, furnished throughout in an elegantly simple and comfortable style. Following the refurbishment, full height timber panelling spans from the ground floor to the upstairs restaurant, with a striking Rothschild and Bickers chandelier lighting the stairwell. In the restaurant, plush furnishings, including bespoke seating by The French House, and additional statement lighting, by Rothschild and Bickers, create a relaxed and refined environment; with two private dining rooms at each end of the restaurant partitioned with copper and glass screens, and 180 degree views of the London river skyline. The dining room to the right, the River Room, houses a unique selection of sheep head sculptures that run along the back wall and are designed by the renowned Dido Crosby.
Designer Alice Adamczewski commented: “Getting a project like this underway meant that we could keep a fresh look for the Swan. We also incorporated the stairwell into the new design so that there is a more consistent flow to the design throughout the building.
“It was interesting working with Rothschild and Bickers on the fabulous bespoke lighting for both the dining areas and working on the stairwell feature chandelier, which takes centre stage, making a very dramatic entrance to the private dining room and function room.”
The restaurant bar has been specially crafted by Interbar and features a seamless length of pewter and brass, with a Carrara marble bar back and Christopher Howe bar stools. Upstairs is the Balcony Room, a beautiful private event space that is licensed for weddings. The venue also boasts a large outdoor terrace, with views across the river, as well as a number of additional spaces for larger scale events.
Alice added: “Without actually changing the size of the restaurant we have managed to create a much greater sense of space and by having BOH areas opened up it has created a real buzz to the environment. By inviting people to sit at the bar, it has made the space less formal and more inviting for pre or post theatre cocktails or small bites, while enjoying marvellous views over the River Thames and Southbank.”
This year also sees Emma Rice appointed as artistic director of Shakespeare’s Globe, Emma begins her season around the theme of Wonder, and has commissioned set designer Lez Brotherston to create a magical forest around the Globe site. Swan, Shakespeare’s Globe will also be drawing upon the Wonder theme throughout the bar and restaurant.