Serge et Le Phoque will be replaced by Yopo at The Mandrake Hotel in Fitzrovia. The modern European restaurant inspired by its Hong Kong namesake was quietly, and subtly renamed to Serge sometime in 2018, and is now closed all together.
Yopo, named for a Venezuelan jungle plant, will bring a loosely defined tangle of South American “influences” to a menu that still broadly describes itself as “modern European,” according to Hot Dinners. What this means in practice is a sea bass, blood orange, red onion and nasturtium ceviche, grilled octopus with ‘aji pancha’, a pepper-based sauce that is various and distinct, changing according to the country, or even region where it is prepared, and a dessert made from double-fermented itakuja chocolate with yoghurt sorbet, salted caramel, fennel pollen, and olive oil. The restaurant — operating all day — promises “a sense of escapism, for stylish dining.”
No chef is named, but the restaurant will open for soft launch 5 February; a takeover rather than a fully-fledged ‘new’ opening. The official opening date is 12 February.