By Denis Sheehan, Publisher, H&C News: Whispers of The Pelican in Notting Hill investigated…
We have heard a few whispers that The Pelican in Notting Hill is fast becoming a haunt frequented by the great and good of the food world, so we asked someone in the know for more info…
The Pelican has been a pub in Notting Hill on All Saints Road since 1870, but was recently acquired by new owners and, following a full restoration and soft opening period, it has relaunched as a pub and dining room. Restaurateur James Gummer, along with co-owners Phil Winser and Richard Squire, and Head Chef Owen Kenworthy, have redesigned and refurbished the site to create what they describe as “a place that becomes a cornerstone of the local community, not just somewhere to eat and drink”.
Owen Kenworthy’s background is impressively broad, ranging from The Wolseley and Sketch to Primeur and Brawn, where he was Head Chef alongside Ed Wilson when it opened in 2010. His cooking style is rustic, modern executions of classic British and European cuisine.
The focus is on the finest British produce, with sustainability also a fundamental priority, and engaging suppliers who use regenerative farming methods, where possible. Typical dishes on the dining room menu include: Raw beef with Gentleman’s Relish, Ham hock with egg mayo, Potted shrimp, Onglet and shallot, and Lobster and monkfish pie with lobster head gravy. Various cuts of beef are butchered on-site, and a ‘5th Quarter Pie’ makes use of the offal. Desserts include Lemon posset with shortbread; and Ginger Parkin and custard, made with Owen’s family recipe. The pub offering is more casual with options such as Mince on toast; Welsh rarebit; Sausage roll; and Spider crab toast.
A wide selection of British beers includes Allsopp’s IPA, Portobello Pilsner, and Deya. In addition to classic cocktails and a concise 40-bin wine list (glasses from £5/bottles from £25), a constantly evolving single bottle wine list is available.
James Gummer – who oversees the day-to-day operations – also owns 7 Saints restaurant, located further down All Saints Road, which opened in 2018. His career in hospitality began at The Smile in New York, followed by roles at The Wolseley and the Santa Cruz group’s Isabel in Mayfair. Fellow co-founder Phil Winser recently returned to London from New York, where he spent the last 12 years operating the Silkstone Group and hugely successful The Fat Radish (including co-writing The Fat Radish Kitchen Diaries).
The dining room accommodates up to 48, while the pub/bar area can seat 40 (16 of those in a small section by the fireplace), and up to 24 outdoors, with license for standing drinkers. The Pelican Room on the upper level – for private hire and events – can seat up to 30, and has its own bar. The understated design throughout – devised by the three owners – features warm lighting and cosy tan leather banquettes, original fireplaces, and antique furniture.
Enthusing about the objectives of The Pelican to play a vital role in the neighbourhood, James Gummer stated: “We want it to be fun for our guests to join us for not only dining and drinking, but also for any of the planned regular events and activities in the building, from film and jazz nights, to boxing, bridge and pilates classes.” Aiming to create a ‘town hall’ environment for the surrounding community, the team opens up the Pelican Room to local council meetings and the Tavistock Gardens Residents’ Association. The Pelican also sponsors the Rugby Portobello Under 12s, a team at the local Football Academy funded by the Rugby Portobello Trust.
We might ask the same ‘someone in the know’ if they could arrange for a table soon, if so full report to follow, the Onglet and shallot looks a must.
CURRENT OPENING HOURS
The Pelican is open daily
THE DINING ROOM: Lunch Saturday and Sunday Noon-3.30pm
Dinner Monday-Saturday 6pm-10pm; Sunday 6pm-9pm
THE PUB: Monday-Thursday 5pm-Midnight; Friday-Saturday Noon-Midnight; Sunday Noon-10.30pm
(Bar menu available throughout pub opening hours)
The Pelican – 45 All Saints Road, London W11 1HE
Telephone – 020 4537 2880, or Email – firstname.lastname@example.org
Website – www.thepelicanw11.com Instagram – @thepelican_w11