Elysium expands beyond Essex with London restaurant and bar

zinnia chelsea

Essex-based Elysium Group has opened Japanese fusion restaurant and cocktail bar Zinnia in Chelsea in London.

Set in a Georgian building in Fulham Road, it covers three floors including a restaurant, a relaxed bar with a full food menu and a basement lounge bar. The drinks menu specialises in Japanese whisky and sake cocktails as well as classic recipes.

The glamorous Zinnia Lounge, hidden beneath the main restaurant, is described as a “secret den for sophisticated fun”. The stylish bar has comfortable suede banquette seating with smoked glass, brass, black and gold, with a DJ booth to create a late-night party.

Zinnia is open from midday onwards for lunch, when diners can enjoy bento boxes, lighter sharing plates and a range of sushi. There is also an Asian-inspired afternoon tea, with a selection of pastries, cakes and tarts baked daily on the premises, served with cups of Flora Tea.

The evening menu features highlights such as sushi with ahi tuna and hamachi, Dorset crab, aged sirloin tataki and miso black cod, or Szechuan glazed pork belly, lotus root, petit pear and ginger.

The evening menu also includes Robata grill offerings such as skewers of yakitori chicken, teriyaki beef and spiced quail or pork fillet with Kohlrabi, shishito and papaya curry.

Larger dishes on the menu include spiced duck confit, duck onigiri, miso carrot and samphire, and hake wrapped in banana leaf with coconut rice and coriander.

Desserts include coconut and mango sphere with mango sorbet and almonds or jasmine and green tea mousse with white chocolate and yuzu curd. Also offered after dinner are a range of sorbets, a cheese board and a chocolate tart with milk chocolate and Baileys mousse and hazelnuts.

The main bar area as you enter Zinnia is designed for relaxed all-day dining at reclaimed timber-topped tables that contrast with comfortable leather banquette seating.

Hints of opulence come through the ebony-stained panelling and gold fretwork screens that divide the bar from the more formal dining area and the intimate, cosy booths on the first floor.

The focal point is the long table-style front bar with a stone counter and opulent lacquer-finished oak legs.

The restaurant area features sumptuous black and gold décor, a large feature fireplace and flickering candles alongside the suede banquettes and large sharing table. This theme continues up to the mezzanine dining area.

Taking over the site of former bar and restaurant Eighty-Six, Zinnia is the first London site for Elysium Group. Founded in 2000 by Ash Afzalnia, it operates restaurants, bars and nightclubs including Waikiki, Qube, Mimosa and Dirty Penguin in Colchester.

In November, it opened Hudson House in Colchester, made up of Hudson New York Bar & Kitchen, XV Private Members Lounge & Steak etc Restaurant.

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