D&D London is a group of luxury restaurants, bars and hotels based principally in London, but also with venues in Paris, New York and Tokyo. It was founded by Des Gunewardena and David Loewi (the eponymous D and D) in 2006, following a buyout of Conran Restaurants, which itself was established back in 1991. Today D&D London owns and operates 35 restaurants, with one Michelin Star (Angler in the South Place Hotel close to the Barbican), and an award winning hotel. It has also been recognised as a leading business in caring for the environment and is currently the SRA’s Sustainable Large Restaurant Group of the Year.
This January the restaurant group is bringing a splash of colour into the winter period – its Blank Canvas celebration will be showcasing art throughout its restaurants.
Coq d’Argent (on Cheapside, so also close to the Barbican) is offering a bespoke cocktail list, inspired by ‘The School of Paris’: exquisitely-crafted creations are tributes to the works of Pollock, Picasso, Kandinsky and Matisse. Meanwhile, at the Royal Exchange, Threadneedle Bar (also an easy walk for Barbican residents) has launched a range of cocktails inspired by the iconic works of Rene Magritte. Sauterelle restaurant, also at the Royal Exchange, will serve a dessert inspired by Yayoi Kusama’s Mirrors exhibition. Life drawing classes at Blueprint Café near Tower Bridge and art-themed tasting menus at Avenue (in St James’) will be rolled out as well as an intimate showcase of cutting-edge works and guest speakers from The Maddox Gallery at Bluebird (in Chelsea)!
Keep busy with lots of exciting pop-up exhibitions hosted in D&D’s most erudite sites. If dining at German Gymnasium (in Kings Cross) the restaurant has teamed up with House of Illustration to offer you a 20% discount if you quote ‘German Gym Art Club’ as you buy tickets on the door during January! (One ticket gives access to all three galleries at House of Illustration.), whilst at Plateau (Canary Wharf) view French goddess Brigitte Bardot, immortalised in a selection of images from the Simon Claridge Diamond Dust Collection. Launceston Place (in South Ken) is collaborating with the V&A and for £35 diners will be able to feast on a special two-course menu and receive a free ticket to the highly acclaimed You Say You Want a Revolution exhibition.
Most importantly, D&D London has partnered with The Art Room a charity supporting 5 to 16 year-olds experiencing emotional and behavioural difficulties. There are eight Art Rooms in schools around Oxfordshire, London and Edinburgh, offering art as therapy to increase children’s self-esteem, self-confidence and independence. Rather than adding a donation to bills D&D is asking diners to gift art materials. A key part of The Art Room methodology is the professional-grade quality of the materials used in the sessions. They send a clear message of confidence in and esteem for the children and young people. Kensington Place will be displaying the children’s works throughout January and will host a closing event with The Art Room to mark the end of the collaboration and offer out the materials collected.
Thus D&D has some wonderful options in store this January. With great offers for diners and art fanatics alike, D&D guests can expect to hear inspirational speakers, participate in exclusive exhibitions, sip on creative cocktails and savour fine food served with finesse – just what you need to make yours a colourful introduction to 2017!