70 Charlotte Street
Artisan Champagne and underrated Beaujolais are vinous draws at the revered Kitchen Table, spilling over from the jolly hot dogs and Champagne concept, Bubbledogs, to the front of the Fitzrovia venue.
Grower Champagnes selected by Sandia Chang
James Knappett\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\’s authored dishes
Ringside seats at the precipice of the kitchen
“We are lucky to have extremely open-minded guests who ask for our recommendation. We always ask them what they normally drink and from there, we get them to try something new but still within their comfort zone,” advises the engaging Sandia Chang who, with husband and head chef, James Knappett, is co-founder of Fitzrovia’s Kitchen Table, supported by JKS Restaurants (which includes Gymkhana, BAO, Lyles and Sabor). This exclusive counter for a maximum of 20 guests is discretely set at the back of their gourmet hot dogs and Champagne bar, Bubbledogs.
Chang and sommelier, Valentina Ragazzo oversee a list which pulls focus on largely kindly priced, grower Champagnes, including her newest favourite producer, Dhondt Grellet, maker of “extraordinary Champagne from Flavigny near Avize and Les Mesnil in the Côte des Blancs.” Chang notes young winemaker, Adrien Dhodnt, “relies on a solera in all of his wines instead of reserve wines.”
Beaujolais has very much piqued her interest too, recently. “I find the wines there extremely underrated. We now highlight Beaujolais wines more so than Burgundy.” Hence the presence of Domaine Chapel’s Beaujolais-Villages, crafted by the David Chapel, son of chef Alain Chapel who garnered three Michelin stars.
Knappet’s 12-course tasting menu, awarded two Michelin stars, changes daily. One wine and food match saw Occhipinti SP68 Etna Bianco, made by Arianna Occhipinti whose uncle, Giusto owns the famous COS estate, “paired with our cheese course at that time which was onion tart Tatin with frozen Beauvale blue cheese and thyme oil,” recalls Chang.
The playlist at Kitchen Table is upbeat, says Chang. “James is sole dictator of music at Kitchen Table. All British bands from the 1960s to the present day which keeps the vibe lively and makes a good starter for conversations. I believe that when the vibe is fun, people tend to drink more!”
Chang and Knappett previously worked at Noma, Copenhagen and Thomas Keller’s Per Se, New York, and Chang also opened Roganic marque one. “We have had the honour to have hosted a lot of guest chefs and wine producers from around the world at Kitchen Table,” she says. ‘But, to this day, the most memorable event was when Thomas Keller came to our opening.”
By Douglas Blyde.
The engaging Sandia Chang is, with husband and head chef, James Knappett, co-founder of Fitzrovia’s Kitchen Table, which is discretely located at the back of gourmet hot dogs and Champagne bar, Bubbledogs. Chang oversees the wine list which pulls focus on largely kindly priced, grower Champagnes, including the wines of Marie Courtin. ‘She is one of the most wonderful producers, working completely biodynamically and on her own off of a parcel of just 2.5 hectares in the Aube. We have always carried her Concordance cuvée which is 100% Pinot Noir, with no dosage nor added sulphur. We have become extremely close and she even sent her daughter to work with us at Bubbledogs over the summer.’
A concise selection of still wines includes white and red bottles from the Coteaux Champenois (Olivier Horiot), England (Gusbourne Pinot Noir) and even Poland (Dom Bliskowice), as well as, given Chang’s provenance, the USA. Burgundy features; Bordeaux does not.
Knappet’s tasting menu may include crab tartlet with bergamot and sorrel, venison Wellington with purées of cep and damson, and hibiscus poached rhubarb with charred black pepper meringue.
On account of her enthusiasm for craft winemakers, Chang, whose CV as sommelier, includes Noma in Copenhagen and Thomas Keller’s Per Se, New York, and in London, Roganic marque one, Kitchen Table has become a nexus for low intervention inclined winemakers to aim for to showcase their wares alongside detailed cuisine. ‘We have had the honour to have hosted a lot of guest chefs and wine producers from around the world,’ she says. ‘But, to this day, the most memorable event was when Thomas Keller came to support us at our opening…’
By Douglas Blyde.
Champagne is the real draw at Kitchen Table, spilling over from ‘Hot Dogs and Champagne’ concept of Bubbledogs at the front of the restaurant.
While there are also some sharp selections from elsewhere, you would do well to spend a whole evening on the fizzy stuff here.
By Zeren Wilson
Glass from : £ 10 (125 ml)
70 Charlotte StreetW1T 4QG
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