Steve Drake ‘Delighted’ to be Back in the Kitchen as he Launches Sorrel

Award-winning chef Steve Drake says he is ‘delighted’ to be back in the kitchen as he launches his first new opening in more than a decade.

Sorrel in Dorking is the long-awaited new venture for Drake, who previously held Michelin stars at Drake’s on the Pond in Abinger Hamer and Drake’s in Ripley for a total of 14 consecutive years.

Drake also won the prestigious Roux Scholarship and has worked in some of the world’s most acclaimed chefs including Chez Nico at Ninety Park Lane, the Oak Room with Marco Pierre White, Pied a Terre and Aubergine.

The 32-cover restaurant and private dining room will showcase Drake’s approach to food and creativity. Inspired by simplicity, discovery and the ingredients themselves, Sorrel’s monthly changing menus include a three-course lunch menu and a nine-course Discovery menu.

This month’s menu includes pork cheeks, scallop ‘lardo’ and parsnip crackling; pheasant, chocolate, ‘coq au vin’, cep and salsify, and grapefruit curd, peanut, coconut and basil.

Working with Alexander Waterworth Interiors, Drake and the creative team have spent nearly a year radically redesigning the dining experience for guests at the historic, 300-year-old building.

Behind-the-scenes, Drake has cultivated an open kitchen philosophy where ideas, the creative process, and cooking are shared with guests and talented young chefs.

As an alternative to traditional working hours and practices, Sorrel will open four days a week – Wednesday to Saturday lunch and dinner –  giving the team time and space to explore their creativity and discovery of flavours and techniques.

Drake says: “My vision for Sorrel has always been to create a connection between what’s happening in the kitchen and the dining room. With the new open plan design, as soon as you walk through the door you catch a glimpse of the pass and the chefs at work giving you an instant hit of energy and creativity.

“Having spent the last year refining and simplifying my cooking, I want to ensure every element of the dish shines.  A new dish of 21-day aged raw venison with bitter orange, smoked egg yolk, anchovy and dried watercress is full of flavour and texture. This light, clean style can be seen throughout the seasonal menu.”