Classic inspiration at Jason Atherton’s new bar

Gareth EvansA new cocktail bar is to open as part of chef Jason Atherton’s latest venture, City Social inside Tower 42 in the City of London.

Located on the 24th floor, the City Social bar will seat 85 people and serve a selection of cocktails inspired by Prohibition and the period from 1910 to the 1930s.

The inspiration for the drinks is in line with the Art Deco-style interiors of the venue which are being designed by Russell Sage Studios. The 90-cover restaurant and bar are due to open in May.

The cocktails are being developed by Gareth Evans (pictured), group bar manager for Jason’s restaurants and bars including Berners Tavern at The London Edition hotel, The Blind Pig at Social Eating House and Pollen Street Social.

They will be simple, short, spirit-based cocktails specialising in Scotch and American whiskies, gins and cognacs. As at Jason’s other bars, the drinks will be classic and served in short glasses alongside a selection of champagne cocktails.

The Michelin-starred chef is opening City Social in partnership with Restaurant Associates, the contract caterer that runs hospitality operations at Tower 42 including the Vertigo 42 champagne bar.

Head chef Paul Walsh, previously sous chef at Gordon Ramsay’s Royal Hospital Road, is working closely with Atherton to design the City Social menu which will feature “creative yet simple dishes showcasing the best of British ingredients”.

Jason said: “I’m really excited to be working with Restaurant Associates and to be opening City Social within Tower 42. You will walk into my restaurant from the lifts and immediately see the Gherkin, The Cheesegrater, and all those iconic buildings that have shot up in London over the past decade, right in front of your eyes. The restaurant will serve beautiful cuisine in a glamorous environment.”

The team will also include sommelier Christopher Delalonde, previously at restaurant and hotel group Prescott & Conran, and general manager Andy Downton, previously at Claridges and D&D London’s The Old Bengal Warehouse.

Russell Sage Studios will create a contemporary Art Deco look for City Social that is elegant with fine simple finishes. Accents of brass and mirror will sit alongside rosewood panelled boards, chrome and smoked glass.

The focal point of the restaurant will be the free-standing, dramatic black-and-steel open kitchen in the centre of the dining room.

Andy Harris, managing director of Restaurant Associates, said: “We’re absolutely thrilled to be teaming up with Jason Atherton at Tower 42. We’ve worked closely with the Tower for many years and the launch of City Social is the perfect next step for this partnership.

“The magnificent views that this London landmark has to offer, combined with Jason’s international culinary experience is sure to delight diners. The opening marks an exciting time for the City of London and its thriving food scene and I can’t wait to welcome people to City Social.”

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