Hawksmoor – a treasure underfoot in Borough Market.
Lying in the shadow of Southwark Cathedral is Borough Market, an epicurean heaven that has no equal in London for its variety and quality of produce. So, it is not surprising that some wonderful pubs, eateries and restaurants have established themselves on its perimeter. One such is Hawksmoor.
Once you have been seated by one of the charming staff, do take a look at the floor. There is an interesting story there: the interior of the building has been renovated with very particular care including the floor. Some seven years previously, the owner bought two containers of aged parquet tiles recovered from another very old building in France. They were originally laid on bitumen but were carelessly stacked so the bitumen on the back had rubbed off onto the face of the blocks whilst in storage.
The blocks were also inconsistent in size and because the floor was not going to be sanded to keep its antique look, HS Wood Flooring had to clean each one individually by hand scraping the bitumen off the surface. Then they had to be sorted to fit floor pattern that was dictated to some extent by the vagaries of the blocks. In the end, the variety of the colours of the tiles and the slight unevenness of the surface created a floor of great character and when two coats of wax were applied, the floor brought the whole room to life with its authenticity intact.
The owners of Hawksmoor were set on providing a unique dining experience. That is to say, the food, the service and the ambience had to be exceptional. Easier said than done.