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Crispin at Studio Voltaire: Bistro Freddie team announce new restaurant

Power couple: gallery director Joe Scotland MBE, left, will welcome restaurateur Dominic Hamdy to Studio Voltaire in the spring (India Cardona)
Power couple: gallery director Joe Scotland MBE, left, will welcome restaurateur Dominic Hamdy to Studio Voltaire in the spring (India Cardona)

The restaurateur behind Bistro Freddie, as well as Crispin in Spitalfields and its sister Bar Crispin in Soho, has announced plans for his latest project.

In an interview published today in the Standard, Dominic Hamdy revealed his plans to launch Crispin at Studio Voltaire, which will open in Clapham this spring.

“We were really looking to offer next step for Bar Crispin in its journey,” Hamdy told the Standard. “This is a chance to take what we’ve learnt from Bistro Freddie and Bar Crispin, and try to do a really great restaurant that people really want to go to, within the context of an art gallery.”

The new opening, which will offer 50 covers — split between 40 seated inside and 10 at the bar — is inspired in part by the Nineties heyday of Terence Conran’s Blueprint Cafe. Hamdy’s aim, he said, was to ensure the restaurant feels a part of the gallery, rather than simply a restaurant that happens to be there.

“It’s a working gallery,” he said. “There are 60 live-in artists that have workshops there, creating works from their studios. Given it’s a working space, and the artists need to feel at home. We know it’s a gallery, and we don’t want to pretend it’s not. So we’ll do an artists’ menu, to bring them in.”

 (India Cardona)
(India Cardona)

The new restaurant has been a year in the planning, with Hamdy working alongside Voltaire’s director, Joe Scotland MBE. Heading the kitchen will be Michael Miles, formerly of Counter71 and Manteca, with ex-Mountain chef Ella Williams as his sous. With Crispin executive chef Lewis de Haas overseeing things, the pair will champion small-scale, independent producers and growers, with a menu of European and British classics, fresh pastas, charcoal-grilled meats and fish, seasonal vegetables, and a number of puddings. The restaurant will offer lunch from Wednesday to Sunday, with supper on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

Miles said of his appointment: “I have been following Crispin and Lewis for some time, and I'm incredibly excited to be part of the team for such a special and culturally rich site. The menu at Crispin at Studio Voltaire will be generous, seasonal, and simply full of dishes you truly want to eat. I am thrilled to join Studio Voltaire's community of artists, creatives, and locals, providing them with delectable plates of food.”

Alexandra Price, the group's head of wine, has curated the list for Voltaire, just as she has in Shoreditch, Spitalfields, and Soho. A short list is expected, featuring accessible, sustainable wines on tap, as well as a bottle list championing artisanal winemakers. The wine program will incorporate tastings and winemaker dinners, celebrating the stories of different winemakers.

Crispin at Studio Voltaire will open at 1A Nelsons Row, SW4 7JR. For more information, visit crispinlondon.com