Cocktails at The Gilbert Scott,London

During the Social Media Week I attended the Food Photography Workshop organised by Great British Chefs. The venue was the Google Local London Office which offers a stunning view of London. This was a very sought after free event and a bunch of us who were looking at tips on improving our food photography skills were amongst the bloggers who got some useful tips from David Griffen. Do pop over to his blog (click the hyperlink) to see some of his stunning work. Food and Drinks were courtesy The Gilbert Scott and Michellin starred Chef Marcus Wareing who spoke to all of us.

One of the treats in our goody bag for the evening was an invite to The Gilbert Scott for a free cocktail.So a bunch of us food bloggers teamed up and decided to go make a party of it! The Gilbert Scott kindly offered to take us girls on a guided tour of the beautiful Victorian restaurant complete with more than a peek at the private dinning hall and hold your breath ….. the Kitchen! Ah!

I cannot stop romancing old buildings and the Gothic Revival architectural style used by Scott is proof that old really is gold. Having spent the better part of my afternoon walking around St. Pancras International station I did manage to click a lot of photos of the exterior of the hotel, here’s one and to see the rest please go to my Flickr stream.

St.Pancras Renaissance Hotel today

I was sitting quietly at a high stool at Cafe’ Nero just outside the hotel waiting for the gang to arrive and assemble near the huge and awe-inspiring Lovers statue at St.Pancras , I heard a tourist ask the barista where the ”Harry Potter thing” was … little did I know that while on tour a few minutes later the restaurant Manager Mark Cesareo was to reveal that some part of the movie was filmed inside the grand building. No wonder then that the staircase reminded me of the shifting staircase at Hogwarts?Agree?

Side top view of the staircase in the Hotel

To be part of a The St Pancras Renaissance Hotel London is no mean feat. Every tile and archway speak of contemporary grandeur. 138 years after the Midland Grand Hotel originally opened it doors people in May 2011 the new avatar was unveiled – painstakingly restored as part of a multi-million pound restoration project.

When architect Gilbert Scott’s dazzling architectural masterpiece finally opened it doors to people, that many years ago it also created several new benchmarks in the hospitality industry. The most stellar improvement happened in 1899 –  a specially designed revolving door was fitted in the hall entrance which was supplied by the inventor of the revolving door, Theophilus Van Kannel.

Another proof of Scotts brilliant design and solid build lies in the fact that this iconic building has weathered two world wars and still stands tall, strong and proud to this day. It’s really shocking to know that during WWII it was bombed three times in one month!

Contrary to what I thought the private dining room would be, it was a very cosy and comely room. This beautiful copper kettle caught my eye.

The Private dining room - copper kettle

The Private Dining Room

Image Courtesy :The Gilbert Scott

The Private Dining Room in daylight

Image Courtesy :The Gilbert Scott

Next on the tour – The Gilbert Scott dining room – A  beautiful piano in one corner and gilded frames set the mood for a warm dinning experience. Understated opulence belie the history that seems to pour out of every detail of the high ceiling.

 The Restaurant as night falls (2)Image Courtesy :The Gilbert Scott

New meets old in as non-invasive a manner and restoration efforts seem to have retained as much of the old world charm as possible.The famous stairway in the photo below featured in a Spice girl video. But I couldn’t tear my eyes away from the beautiful staircase which seems to vine around an imaginary axis, an other worldly feeling hangs heavy in the air and of you close your eyes you can even imagine women in beautiful period clothing sashaying around while somewhere in the background faint piano notes fill the invisible pockets in the air….

The main staircase

(If I was you I would simply imagine the photo above is perfect and Mark is not in the photo … *grins*)

Down in the kitchen next I quickly snap out of my reverie, it’s squeaky clean, professional and busy , very busy. No space is wasted here – no sir! Every inch of the walls at the back are used to store a large variety of fine wines and champagnes.I would love to savour a Glenmorangie 25 year…I had my first ever taste of Glenmorangie when my pa opened a bottle to celebrate the double wedding ….ummm good, old times 🙂

The Kitchen Table is available to hire for a private dining experience,it is something else I tell ya 🙂

The Gilbert Scott Kitchen Table

Image Courtesy :The Gilbert Scott

When we settled down at our table at the Bar it felt good to clink glasses and bite into some tasty bites. It was the 1873 cocktail for all , except me …. did I have to go off alcohol during the London Cocktail Week……to compensate I had two mocktails 😉

High res bar

Image Courtesy :The Gilbert Scott

grub

Peeking out of a corner behind our table is a sigh which reads ”POST” it part of the old bits that was found during restoration and thankfully they let it be… if you look at it long enough I assure you it will take you back in time and you might even hear a horse carriage  ….a flashback into the Victorian era if you will…

Midland-Grand-Hotel (Copy)

Image Credit : The Telegraph

The Gilbert Scott on Urbanspoon

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4 thoughts on “Cocktails at The Gilbert Scott,London

  1. Love the post m.. The place was absolutely gorgeous isn’t it.
    The harry potter thing.. The 3 and a quarter platform or some crap like that is at kings cross and believe me I’ve taken so many enthu tourists there it’s not funny.. And you see it and it’s no even that great.. Yours sincerely harry potter hater 😉

    • Hey N! Thank you 🙂 Yes the St.Pancras Hotel is very charming indeed, I can’t get over the beautiful high ceiling and the arched windows, Love the bar at The Gilbert Scott!!!
      Really hahaha ok I need to go and see where this 3 and a quarter platform thing is- I only saw it during the last movie promo and they seem to have moved it during the station makeover, I LOVE Harry Potter and I totally get that you HATE it, its exactly like MARMITE I think – 2 camps,either you LOVE it or you HATE it, there’s nothing in between 🙂

  2. How fantastic, I love the St Pancras Station building and for so long it was virtually abandoned. Fabulous to see it full of life and back to grandeur. GG

    • Hello GG, I love the building too and am so fascinated by its rich history.The fact that it stands tall in-spite of being bombed is simply amazing.It truely is one of London’s iconic landmarks. I love travelling into Kings Cross via the tube and walking out to see this cathedral like beauty,it never fails to take my breath away. I hope that it only continues to stay full of life and doesn’t need any more attempts at revival…

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