Monday, September 22, 2014

St. Pancras Grand Champagne Bar Becomes Searcys Champagne Bar, UK

Pictures: St. Pancras Champagne Bar Now and Before.

The Eurostar provides a very comfortable way of traveling from Paris to London in a little bit more than 2 hours. You leave at the Gare du Nord in Paris and you arrive at St. Pancras, the new railway station close to King’s Cross, in London.

St. Pancras Champagne Bar situated just next to the tracks were the Eurostar arrives and leaves. Below the magnificent Barlow Shed, allowing a full appreciation of the amazing architecture of the historic Victorian St. Pancras Station., the St. Pancras Champagne Bar is an excellent place for a welcome drink to London or a final drink before you leave London for France.

Pictures: Searcys St. Pancras Champagne Bar

My daughter Cornelia Schiller Tremann graduated from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) in London with a PhD in late 2013; the annual graduation ceremony took place in July 2014. My wife Annette and I accompanied Cornelia and her husband Chris to London for the graduation ceremony. We took the Eurostar from Paris. When we arrived in London, I suggested to start the visit of London with a glass of Champagne at the St. Pancras Champagne Bar. Annette, Cornelia and Chris like the idea.

Picture: Dr. Cornelia Schiller Tremann and a SOAS Faculty Staff Member

Approaching the bar, I noticed that St. Pancras Grand Champagne Bar had become Searcys Champagne Bar. New owner, new management? No. Ownership and Management did not change, the bar was renamed. Indeed, when I looked at my earlier posting about the St. Pancras Grand Champagne Bar, I could detect Searcys in small letters below the main name.

See also:
The Amazing Champagnes of the St. Pancras Grand Champagne Bar in London – But no English or Other Sparklers 

The Place

Searcys Champagne Bar at St. Pancras Station is situated just next to the tracks were the Eurostar arrives, below the magnificent Barlow Shed, allowing a full appreciation of the amazing architecture of the historic Victorian St. Pancras Station. It is a truly unique and stunning venue. The set-up is very nice and comfortable with a range of different seating options.

Pictures: St. Pancras Champagne Bar Now and Before

Searcys: Imagine 1,372 Champagne flutes lined up side by side and you have some idea of exactly how vast Europe’s longest Champagne bar at St Pancras International actually is. The 98 meter space housing the St Pancras Grand Champagne Bar is breath-taking thanks to its location which allows a panoramic view of the entire terminal whilst also making the most of the historic vaulted ceiling.

An Amazing List of Champagnes

The Searcys Champagne Bar has an outstanding and very wide selection of Grande Marque NV Champagnes as well as older vintage Champagnes. (The exchange rates are currently: BP 0.79 = Euro 1 = UD$ 1.34.)

It currently offers 17 Champagnes by the glass, ranging from a NV Besserat Grande Traditin Brut NV for BP 9.50 to a Bollinger Rose NV for BP 17.00. Most of the glasses are in the BP 12 to 15 range.
st of them from well established producers.

Pictures: Searcys St. Pancras Champagne Bar

If you want to go for a whole bottle, the Searcys Champagne Bar has a selection of about 100 0.75 liter bottles, most of them from well-established producers. There is quite a number of very special champagnes in the BP 100 plus range, including such champagnes as the 2004 Bollinger Vieilles Vignes Francaises for BP 600, the 2004 Louis Roederer Cristal Rosé for BP 550 and even the 1996 Krug Clos du Mesnil, Blanc du Blancs for BP 1400.

If you are in a group, you can go for a larger size: The bar carries Magnums, Jeroboams, Methuselahs (= 8 bottles) and even super large sizes, for example:

NV Pol Roger Brut Reserve Salmanazar (= 12 bottles) for BP 950;
NV Laurent-Perrier Brut Balthazar (= 20 bottles) for BP 1000.

As a new development, Searcys Champagne Bar St. Pancras carries English sparklers, but just 2 Balfour Roses, NV. The Balfour Rose, Searcys Cuvee, 2011 is BP 13 by the glass.

Picture: English Sparklers

Boris Maskow’s Impressions

Here is a very nice write-up by Boris Maskow, one of Germany’s leading Champagne expert. Boris Maskow: Meinen letzten Londonausflug habe ich in Vorbereitung eigentlich völlig anderer Fragen mit Rosé begonnen und begossen. In Searcys Champagnerbar im Obergeschoss von St. Pancras, wohin ich meine Schritte nicht nur wegen der gepflegten Toilettenanlage stets ohne schuldhaftes zögern lenke, gibt es eine erkleckliche Auswahl an heimischem und französischen Blubber. Erquickend und labend ist der Balfour Brut Rosé aus dem Garten Englands, der Grafschaft Kent. Schnittig wie ein Ubootjäger, mit viel Verbene, Zitrus, wenigen grünlichen Aromen und verblüffender Nähe zum Champagner. Ein viel schwereres Geschoss ist der Rosé aus dem Hause Henri Giraud. Da merkt man den ungenierten Einsatz von Holz, langem Hefelager und aller überbordenden Pinotfülle, die ein Grand Cru wie Ay in Erinnerung an die Zeiten Henri IV. aufbringen kann. Diese beiden schwerstverschiedenen Roséschäumer kann man kommentarlos und unbegleitet trinken, man kann sich dazu noble Burger mit gutem Wagyurind und Trüffelmayonnaise zubereiten (lassen), der Balfour Rosé geht auf die Dauer auch prima als Ersatz für Whisky Sour durch, während der Giraud ein aufkommendes Hungerfühl leicht im Zaum halten kann, wenngleich nicht unbegrenzt. Ganz am Ende wird man um einen Happen zumindest aus der kalten Küche (sehr gern: Bratenreste oder Ochsenschwanzragout) nicht herumkommen, aber bis dahin ists noch ein langer Weg.

Searcys Champagne Bars in London

There are now 5 Searcys Champagne Bars in London:

st pancras champagne bar, St Pancras International Station, London N1C 4QL
searcys champagne bar – one new change, One New Change, London EC4M 9AF
searcys champagne bar – westfield London, The Village, Westfield Shopping Centre, Ariel Way, London W12 7GQ
searcys champagne bar – westfield Stratford, 8a Ground Floor, The Arcade, Westfield Stratford City, London E20 1EH
searcys champagne bar – Paddington, Unit 58, The Lawn, Paddington Station, London W2 1FT

Searcys: The Searcys story began in 1847, with the Duke of Northumberland’s pastry chef. Their plan was to provide an outsourced catering service for large, private houses in London and the home counties that lacked full-time domestic staff. Over the next 120 years, we were awarded a royal warrant and became the contract caterer of choice not just to royalty, but also to many of London’s stately homes. In the 1970s, we opened a series of bars and small restaurants in London as our first permanent sites. Then, in 1990, we were appointed as catering partner to the Barbican – a relationship that we still cherish over 20 years later. Whilst we have always remained a small, focused company, over the last 166 years, we’ve built a strong reputation for absolute dedication to excellence – and we will continue building it for many years to come.

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