At the end of our luxury tour in the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider we stopped off for lunch at the brand spanking new Ivy Brasserie in Cobham. We’ve been going to the Ivy in London for 30 years and were wondering how they would adapt to this Surrey village.
The entrance to The Ivy is small and off to the side next to a tiny car park and in stark contrast to the interior which is large indeed, much akin to Doctor Who’s Tardis. As you enter past the welcome desk you find a long red and brass bar on the right facing a five table banquette, clearly the place to be if you wish to be at the heart of the action. Ahead and to the left is a trio of rooms culminating in a green house and outdoor terrace. Here you discover a secret garden filled with trendy characters enjoying a lively luncheon. You immediately want to explore and peer inquisitively into the different rooms and see who is lunching with whom.
The rooms to the left, through a small cove, display a cunning layout of tables, banquets, shelves and walls providing privacy whilst still affording a view of other diners. The Ivy Brasserie has cunningly concocted a wonderland of nooks and crannies to suit all tastes in table location and atmosphere. Kudos to the interior architect and designer, they have created an ambiance that is quite unique and very British, think Alice in Wonderland, with a chaotic ensemble of paintings in rich vibrant colours adorning every wall, taken from many eras, from classic racing posters to modern art.
The restaurant is a gorgeous tapestry of rich colours and immediately welcoming. This is a place to dine well and drink heartily in a convivial, exciting yet relaxed atmosphere. And if the number of diners is anything to go by, the place is doing a roaring trade, with an atmosphere more akin to a Friday evening in Chelsea, than a small Surrey town during a weekday lunch.
The whole place is buzzing, they have managed to bring a very fashionable London vibe to the country. A great place to dine with friends, work colleagues or even for singles to meet others, as evidenced by a wealthy footballer with a Ferrari being eyed up by a lone attractive blond by the bar as he walked in. As you can tell by now it’s an ideal venue to people watch and has obviously become the favourite hang out for all epicureans and hedonists in the area.
The food is very good, without being fussy, with a very large selection so there is something for everyone. Starters such as Crispy Duck Salad, Tuna Carpaccio, Wasabi Prawns with Salt and Pepper Squid and even that old favourite Prawn Cocktail. Winter mains include Fish Pie (excellent), Hamburgers, English Fillet, Salmon, Swordfish and Slow Roasted Lamb. The house champagne is a Montoy, fine and fruity, and their selection of cocktails is everything a well seasoned traveller would expect, from a Jameson’s Spiced Sour to a Negroni Tasting Set. I would recommend the Cobham Royale, a fusion of Hibiscus Gin, Sloes, Rose Water and Cremant.
Here’s the clincher, it is all very reasonable priced and this should keep them busy and thriving through out the year, making this a place where you can always find a good crowd and a warm welcome.
We would highly recommend The Ivy Cobham Brasserie to all as an out of town trip or as the perfect stopping place on the way out to the country, or if you are lucky enough to live nearby, as a new local haunt for both business and pleasure. The good news is they have plans to launch many more around the country, one opens soon in Guildford, at the top of the new Tunsgate Quarter.