Boundary Restaurant, Terence and Vicki Conran
Terence Conrans (I believe this is a co-project with his daughter, Vicki) boutique hotel, marketplace, restaurant and cafe is located in the new happening area of London, Shoreditch. The entire concept is not anything people haven't talked about doing but he did it and I thought it was brilliant.
He took an old building and created a small hotel, 12 rooms and 5 suites. I didn't get to see them but would have liked too. On the street floor is a marketplace and bakery. Jellies, fruits, ready made food to take home (boxed), fresh juices, breads, etc. Also at street level (and roof top in warm weather) is a walk-in cafe, Albion. Simple, modern, clean that sits in front of an open kitchen that spans the length of the building after walking through the marketplace. Around the corner is the door to the restaurant, Boundary.
The restaurant is in the basement, at least 3 flights down. There is a small bar seating area and the rest is the restaurant and again a huge open kitchen. It doesn't feel dark at all but hip, cool, modern and chic.
The menu is simple. Every day there is a special from the rotisserie. Of course in true British style you can have roasted lamb, tongue and sweetbreads too but there are a variety of fish and poultry dishes too. A few salads to start and a raw bar section. The wine selection is excellent.
Both Fred and I had the pork which was the rotisserie of the night. We both began with salads. The pork was delicious, well cooked with some basic veggies on the side. We had some cheese for dessert and honey roasted figs that sounded better than they were.
The food was solid, good and a place you would continue to back to. Like a Balthazar, some things probably better than others. I'd go back without question. What stuck with me is not only the ambiance at the restaurant vs the cafe and then of course the market and bakery. Each feel different but there is no doubt that there is a cross-over on customers. Owing the entire building and literally creating a place for the community to buy food, eat food (last minute or in advance reservation) or to sleep adds to the neighborhood in one fell swoop and IMHO, is just genius.
(Top is the building, next down is Boundary, next down is Albion, last down is the marketplace – not the best pictures but you get the idea)