Three Michelin starred Valencian chef Quique Dacosta has opened the doors of this first restaurant outside of Spain, with rice at the heart of the offering.
Speaking at the restaurant’s opening, Quique said: “I am excited to bring part of our tradition and gastronomy to one of the most important capitals of the world. Paella is one of the best-known dishes around yet also one of the most mistreated. With this project, I am materialising a passion I have been nurturing for decades; to reinstate the rice culture from the eastern coast of Spain to its rightful home.”
Arros QD has been designed by the highly-lauded Barcelonia studio Lázaro Rosa-Violán, showcasing an open kitchen that awards diners with views of the eight-metre flame grill upon which their rice is cooked. A sophisticated yet relaxed setting, the restaurant is set across two floors totalling 9,000sq ft., holding 140 covers, with four distinct areas including a lounge with bar seating, a more immersive chef’s paella counter and a chefs table.
Joy Ilario from Lázaro Rosa-Violán told PREMIER HOSPITALITY MAGAZINE: “This project was born from the idea of creating a space where the essence of the Mediterranean Sea is shown with all its nuances, flavours and colours by the hand of Chef Quique Dacosta, with a reinterpretation of the atmosphere of a fine dining paella restaurant by Lazaro Rosa-Violán.
“To build up the interiors we used ceramic tiles, terracotta tiles, wood and custom-made murals. On the ground floor there is a large bar that seeks to represent the effect of fire, hence the tiles are that colour and the wood is dark, representing burned wood. The mirror is used to represent the tinkling/brightness of the flames.
“As for the first floor, we focused on creating a more intimate, cosy space and for that, we decided to go for a more homely atmosphere. For this we used materials such as wood, granite and textile to dress the bar.
“Our main idea was to create something; a space that has never been seen before in London. We have created a show cooking restaurant based on the art of cooking Paellas, which had a lot of nuances and elements to keep in mind.”
Quique Dacosta opened Arros QD on Fitzrovia’s 64 Eastcastle Street on 7th June 2019. His first restaurant in London and outside of his native Spain, the collaborative project showcases Quique’s unique style of cooking while highlighting his passion for rice as well as premium, local and seasonal ingredients.
An entire section of Arros QD’s menu is devoted to rice and includes dishes such as Paella Valenciana, a traditional take on the dish that includes Rabbit chop, chicken and butter beans, all cooked over a wood fire using a variety of timbers to complement each dish. More contemporary rice dishes, highlighting premium and seasonal UK ingredients, include “chapas” such as Wood Pigeon Breast, wild mushrooms, rosemary and porcini aioli. All of the rice dishes are designed to share, evoking a sense of familial ritual, comfort and tradition that Quique credits to rice dishes from around the world.
The rest of the menu features innovative starters and a selection of meat, vegetable and fish mains that range from larger pieces cooked over fire or charcoal, to dishes using more vanguard techniques and elaborations. All dishes celebrate the premium product of the British larder while showcasing the creative mark of the chef.
With this project, Quique seeks to challenge preconceptions and restore Valencia’s rice culture to its rightful place. He said: “Bringing our tradition and gastronomy to one of the main capitals in the world, both generally and gastronomically, is an exercise of commitment and responsibility which fills me with excitement.”
Panespol is a manufacturer of wall decorative panels and decorative objects for interior design. Panespol offers a wide range of products and specialises in custom made designs for wall cladding and interior design.
The company has been in operation since 2002, growing from a simple offering of brick and stone looking walls panels to the wide product range of today. All of the company’s products are hand-painted and boast a high-level of craftsmanship.
Panespol has a longstanding working relationship with design studio Lázaro Rosa-Violán and as such was tasked with contributing to the newly opened Arros QD. Panespol was required to clad a wall, which features curves at some points, with a black mosaic.
A spokesperson for Panespol said:
“All Lázaro Rosa-Violán projects are a challenge for us. They always take our materials one step further and consolidate Panespol as a leader in the interior design world. It’s always a pleasure to work with them.
“At Panespol we are very proud of our customer service. We love to make our customers lives easy; material selection and installation has to be a pleasant process that leads to a fantastic result. We are also proud of the versatility we have achieved with our products. At Panespol every interior designer and architect will find a solution for their interior design projects.”