We’ve been waiting with anticipation for the opening of Wild by Tart, the new all-day restaurant from Lucy Carr-Ellison and Jemima Jones. As fans of their weekly food column in ES magazine (sadly no more) and their cookbook, A Love of Eating we were delighted to hear news that they were to open a permanent restaurant in Victoria’s Eccleston Yards. But that was eighteen months ago, and whilst we’ve had the kiosk and deli to keep us going, and a handful of pop up events, the restaurant proper has only just opened its doors. So was it worth the wait?
Tart has carried cool credentials from the beginning, starting out by catering for fashion shoots, bringing zesty, healthy food to the mouths of Stella McCartney and Kate Moss. So it should come as no surprise that the look and feel of Wild by Tart is effortless and utterly of-the-moment. Housed in a former power station, there’s exposed aluminium piping, walls dripping in house-plants, rattan chairs and velvet banquettes, plus high stools at the brass bar overlooking the kitchen – the seats to book if you’re dining à deux.
Our evening started very well with a simple yet delightful dish of perfect sourdough and whipped marmite butter. Need we say more. From there, all the dishes are designed to be shared, so take your pick from the slightly dizzying selection of Bites, Small Plates, the Grill and the Wood Oven. Ingredients are current and fresh, piquing our interest with the likes of fig vinegar, green tiger’s milk and salt & garlic toum. We wanted to try it all, and at the recommendation of our waitress ordered plates of celeriac taco’s, spicy clam nduja and cider tagliatelle, burrata with that fig leaf vinegar and the marinated quail with coal roasted Babaganoush and shaved fennel. Each plate was delicious, but the best thing came last of all, in the form of the skillet cookie, all warm, melty and gooey.
If you’re a fan of the stitched linen napkin on your lap or the starry wine glass in your hand, you need to pop into their on-site boutique where you can find these things available to buy along with hand-picked homewares inspired by the duo’s travels, think of it as a bit of that impeccable Tart taste to take home. Their vast empire now incorporates the shop, the Wild by Tart restaurant, the deli, take-away kiosk, oh and it all doubles as a photography studio and events space too. It’s an ambitious next step for fashion’s favourite foodies, and we wish them every success.