DIARY: King and Corbin offer adland another haunt

How much longer will adland cling to The Ivy? It's a pertinent question now that Jeremy King and Chris Corbin, the founders of the Covent Garden eaterie, have welcomed the first customers into their new restaurant.

Located just a showreel's throw away from Le Caprice, the pair's first joint venture, The Wolseley, on Piccadilly, looks set to attract its fair share of recession-defying agency types.

But whether the likes of Mark Wnek, Leon Jaume and Robert Campbell will be foresaking The Ivy's cosy ambience for the Art Deco-styled Wolseley, where candelabras hang from a high ceiling and mirrors abound, is debatable.

And despite the presence of several former members of staff from The Ivy staff, including its bowler-hatted doorman Sean, King and Corbin are apparently extremely sensitive to any suggestions that they are trying to set up The Ivy-in-exile.

Campaign's man with the napkin says the pair are telling friends that the last thing they want is to be seen as a rival to The Ivy - they're just too sentimental about the old place. Instead, they hope the two establishments will come to complement each other.

Anybody thinking of test driving the Wolseley will be encouraged by the early reports from the restaurant spies. Open all day, the place offers a cuisine described as "high-class French bistro". The snails and quails' eggs with hollandaise sauce and the coq au vin come recommended. Even better, you don't need a wallet as fat as Robin Wight's when it comes to settling the bill. His name might come in handy if you're booking a table, though.


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