Monte's restaurant and club - high dining in Knightsbridge

164 Sloane Street, London SW1X 9QB

Monte's Bar You approach this exclusive Knightsbridge restaurant and club through an attractive office hallway, next door to Monte's Cigar Store. After a polite reception, and an elevator ride we found ourselves in the club bar. This is a very comfortable with roomy relaxing armchairs, a bar and courtesy reading material.

While only a small percentage of the clientele are Americans (10-15%), this is a familiar haunt to the rich and famous. Prior customers including but not limited to Mick Jagger, Hugh Grant and Ronnie Wood. It is also the kind of place you would expect the "Absolutely Fabulous" girls to hang out.

Jamie is featured on the Food Network in the USA and he has a new TV series launched in the late summer in the UK. Emeril is the number one star, Wolfgang Puck has become a major hit on the network and the Naked Chef has created quite a stir. Rob Feenie, whose food is divine, is Canada's Vancouver equivalent of Jamie.

Monte's Restaurant

Once our table was ready we went downstairs to a very spacious and clean looking, modern but elegant dining room. In keeping with the ambiance, the silverware actually was! and the background music was new age.

This is above all a club, so if you'd like to dine there, you'll need an invitation, or to go for lunch (when the restaurant is open to the public). There are set 2 course (£19.50) and 3 course (£23.00) menus, which we feel are very good value for money and which we sampled.

I tried the Topini organic cherry vine tomatoes, marjoram, salted Sicilian ricotta that were delicious with the rich spicy marjoram. Mike sampled the Insalata of baked buffalo ricotta, zucchini fritti, fresh chilli & mint, volpaia white wine vinegar. They were unusual, the portions small, but an interesting combination with baked ricotta. Overall though, they were a little dry.

With the main course Jamie's rustic roots - his family owned a pub near Epping, Essex - came through in the style and earthy practical nature of the food.

My Gloucester Old Spot Pork Chop came well done baked in a bag with shallots and thyme, sautéed girolles and spinach. The aroma had me salivating but the chop was a little gristly.

Mike's Steamed hand-caught Scottish scallops gained a unique taste from the coriander and tomato juice. There were three scallops and four black sausage parzotti. Another innovative and interesting combination.

The Oliver attitude comes through in this fine dining facility. The menu is driven by the availability of high quality of ingredients. It's a restaurant in which you should not rush, but rather enjoy the ambiance and a relaxing dining experience. The service is attentive but not intrusive, and the tables well spaced so an intimate or business meeting is readily feasible.

Monte's Club Membership

Full membership is £500 per year, allowing two people to use the facilities and there is an initial, one-off joining fee of £250. (A 'junior' membership of £250 is available for those under 35, with a £150 joining fee). The Club facilities also include a Bar (on the 2nd floor), a Nightclub (on the lower ground floor), and a Cigar store.

Monte's Restaurant, Knightsbridge Club/Reservations: 0207 245 0896
Fax: 0207 235 3456

Set menu: 2 courses £19.50, 3 courses £23.00

Hours: Mon-Sat, 09:00 to mid-night
Sun, 12:00 to 22:30

Monte's online

Map Link

Wally Robertson & Mike Hepworth, November 2001

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