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Latest Opening: Milk Beach Soho

What: ​The second site for modern Australian all-day dining brand Milk Beach following on from the success of its debut restaurant in London’s Queen’s Park.

Who:​ Milk Beach’s founder is Sydney-born Elliot Milne who had a background in law, finance and energy prior to entering the world of restaurants. Before moving to London, Milne lived in Ethiopia and worked with Technoserve and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to help set up the Coffee Initiative Project helping coffee farmers access sustainable financing to purchase better equipment and improve the quality of their coffee. As a result, the group has a head of coffee in Californian Matthew Robley-Siemonsma, winner of the UK Coffee Roasting Championship in both 2016 and 2017. On the food side is head of food Darren Leadbeater, who hails from Mackay in Queensland, and whose CV includes Sydney restaurants Guillame at Bennellong, and Aria as well as Frenchie, Wild Honey and Brunswick House in London.

The food:​ Leadbetter’s menu draws inspiration from Southeast Asia and the Med with only a few dishes from the Queen’s Park menu being served in Soho – including potato gems, buttermilk, and salmon roe; and koji marinated chicken ‘Schnitty’ served with fermented chilli mayonnaise and chicken salt chips. The Soho menu is divided into nibbles, raw, veggies, plates and robata options and features key dishes such as Szechuan aubergine karaage; prawn toast with sesame and gochujang sweet ‘n’ sour sauce; monkfish and mussels yellow curry, peanuts, choi sum, holy basil, and jasmine rice; and Chinese 5 spice BBQ pork rib dumplings, chilli pho ga consommé. Larger robata dishes include prawns with fermented chilli butter; and a Belted Galloway bone-in ribeye with tare, oyster and tarragon butter. Desserts, meanwhile, include its signature ‘Golden Gaytime’ with toffee and buttermilk parfait, dark chocolate, malt and honeycomb crumble; and its take on a lamington with morello cherry, chocolate semifreddo, and coconut. The restaurant is i​nitially only open for dinner, but an all-day breakfast and lunch menu will follow later in autumn.

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