After months of anticipation, Caractére, the first restaurant by husband and wife team Emily Roux and Diego Ferrari has opened. Most people will be expecting to see Emily in chef whites, but at Caractére Emily will be heading up the front of house with Diego as Head Chef.
“Two head chefs in a kitchen can be one too many!” said Emily Roux. “Even at home, one of us cooks at a time. I’m thrilled to be working front of house; great service is just as important as great food to me and I love to talk and get feedback directly from our guests. You don’t get too much of that in the kitchen.”
Opened on 4th October, the site was originally a Bumpkin restaurant before being transformed by multi-disciplined interior design studio Rosendale Design and main contractors Arcacia.
Dale Atkinson from Rosendale Design told Premier Hospitality magazine: “Any job we do is very important for us but I think the most important thing is when you have clients who trust in what you do and your vision. When you have a nice synergy with a client, it helps. Essentially it was an open brief but at the same time, both Emily and Diego were involved with every step of the process, so we would work alongside them ensuring they were on-board with what was going on. After all, this is essentially, going to be their second home!
“Once you enter the first thing you notice is the lighting because there are drop pendants that are running throughout the dining space which are quite a dominating feature of the site.
“We have used natural and raw materials throughout the space and kept the existing brick walls, which we had treated with a chemical to lighten the brick. The process is called distempering and it essentially whitens the brick to give the space a nice, natural quality. The hard materials are then balanced by a dusty pink wall, which is a faux Venetian plaster along the back wall. That feature works really well alongside the raw materials that you see around the space.”
Caractére, meaning ‘character’, encompasses what both Emily and Diego hold dearest – beautiful food, warm surroundings and expert and friendly service – all delivered with real character. Emily is the daughter of the legendary Michel Roux Jr, and Italian born Diego has been Head Chef at Le Gavroche for the past three years. Both chefs were trained in the classic French way but their love for Italian food is also what binds them.
Combining their love of classic French and Italian food, the menu is an expression of their culinary backgrounds and includes dishes that have been elevated from the dishes they love to cook for each other at home.
On the basis of its namesake, the menu is divided into six character traits with up to three dishes to choose from in each section:
- Curios – small plates/starters.
- Subtle – Vegetable focused small plates/starters.
- Delicate – Fish – main course.
- Robust – Meat – main course.
- Strong – Cheese.
- Greedy – Dessert.
At Caractére, guests can explore their curiosity with dishes such as Seared Mackerel, Confit Beetroot, Black Cardamom and Parsley Condiment. Savour the subtle flavours of ‘Acquarello’ Risotto, Almond Praline, Reduced Port and Black Crumble or if you are searching for something Robust then why not try the Seared Ox Tail Ravioli, Beef Consommé, Bone Marrow and Fresh Herbs. Finally, feeling Greedy? Then dig into Whole Roasted Figs in the Leaf, Gateau Basque and Extra Thick Double Cream.
To book a table, visit: https://www.caractererestaurant.com/book/