Venue Review: Park Row London

The Immersive DC-Inspired Restaurant Experience

by Steve J. Ray
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The gang at our sister site, Dark Knight News, and I have been writing about Park Row London since before it even opened.

Having a Batman/Gotham City-themed restaurant in the heart of London is something that excited our entire UK-based team, and this particular Bat-Nerd HUGELY.

Thanks to my amazing wife, Jacqueline, I finally walked through the doors, sampled the gorgeous food, experienced the atmosphere, and met some of the wonderful people working there.

This isn’t a barbecue or burger joint, the food here is of a far higher class and style. You really do get what you pay for.

Here’s how the venue’s described on the company website:

Park Row is London’s first DC-inspired restaurant experience, created by Wonderland Restaurants in partnership with Warner Bros. Consumer Products and DC. as part of the Wonderland Restaurant group, a rich melting pot of some of the finest creative minds and storytellers from the world of food, film and magic.

 

Our company’s vision is to bring curiosity and wonderment to the dining experience in a way never seen before, and build an international portfolio of immersive food concepts around iconic brands, stories and characters.

From the moment you see the restaurant you’re greeted with a structure that screams style and class. The windows bear the legend “Gotham City” and even have Court Of Owls imagery on them. The canopy and door reminded us both of the Art-Deco entrance to New York’s Empire State Building; a theme that follows you into the restaurant itself.

Every Batman era is represented, from the Adam West and Burt Ward TV show, Tim Burton’s Batman ’89, all the way to Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight Trilogy.

We were greeted by Daniel. He gave us a warm smile and welcome, clearly prepared to regale us with the history of Park Row and Gotham City. Sadly, with my child-like enthusiasm after spotting a Shakespeare bust, just like the one seen in the vintage Adam West Batman ’66 TV show, I blundered straight past him announcing at the top of my lungs, “Wow! That’s what Bruce Wayne and Dick Grayson used to get into the Batcave in the 60s!”

Daniel simply said, “Give that a try, and see what happens.”

Well… you didn’t have to tell me twice.

Upon lifting the bust the bookcase ahead of us swung aside, revealing a dimly lit, but brightly colored set of steps that led to the restaurant below. There we were met by Claudia, who took our coats and gave us a Joker Token with which we could retrieve them later.

This is not Planet Hollywood or TGI Friday, this is a million miles away from those places. This restaurant handles the Batman theme with grace and utter class. It’s not tacky or brash, it’s understated… and excellent. Patryk guided us around the restaurant and showed us the many faces of Gotham City, while telling us about the full 10-course taster menu, with paired drinks and the full, interactive, immersive experience. We’ll be back for that at the end of February, though Dark Knight News assistant editor, James Attias, has already experienced it.

There’s theatre, flavor, atmosphere, and fun, all in equal measure. We went for a quiet lunch but the place soon started filling up. Sine and Lucy served us and they were both fantastic.

No, it isn’t cheap but it’s far from expensive. Jacqui and I are real foodies, and have eaten in Michelin Star restaurants; Park Row is on the same level as many of them. Three-course meals start from as little as £35 per person and the venue also offers a-la-carte options, Afternoon Tea, and the world-famous full 10-course taster menu and immersive theatrical experience which is truly a feast for the senses.

The food is exquisite and there’s a great selection for vegetarians, vegans, and those who don’t drink alcohol.

We loved every minute.

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