London's Halkin hotel has confirmed that the celebrated Spanish restaurant Arzak is to open an outpost at the five-star boutique hotel next year.
The deal, first reported by Caterer and Hotelkeeper in October, sees owner COMO Hotels and Resorts team up with the team of the three-Michelin-starred San Sebastian restaurant including Juan Mari Arzak and his daughter Elena as well as chefs Mikel Sorazu, Igor Zalakain and Xabier Gutierrez.
The new restaurant, which is to be called Ametsa with Arzak Instruction, will open in February in the space currently home to the 41-bedroom hotel’s Thai restaurant Nahm. Executive chef David Thompson will continue to run Nahm at the Metropolitan by COMO in Bangkok, Thailand.
Interiors at the new Ametsa with Arzak Instruction will be developed by the London-based consultancy AB Rogers, combining Basque heritage with a contemporary design.
Commenting on the London opening, Elena, one of the world's most celebrated female chefs, said: “Ametsa means ‘dream’ in our language. The dream of a kitchen beyond our frontiers, in the middle of London, in the heart of the Halkin hotel.”
Juan Mari added: “It is a very exciting development for us.”
Arzak Instruction was established by a team of five from Arzak restaurant to deliver the philosophies of the restaurant’s cooking style. Father and daughter have described their food as "Basque, research, evolution, vanguard". The approach is rooted in the traditions of the Basque region combined with modern twists and techniques.
Arzak, which achieved its third Michelin star in 1987, has been run by four generations of the same family.
Nahm, the Thai word for water, was opened by Australian chef and Thai cuisine expert David Thompson in 2001, when it replaced the restaurant previously headed by Italian chef, Stefano Cavallini. Thompson will continue to run Nahm at the Metropolitan by COMO in Bangkok, Thailand.
By Kerstin Kühn
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