New Kelham Island bar and restaurant set to ‘play on your senses’
A new immersive fine dining restaurant and cocktail bar is set to open in the heart of Kelham Island this spring.
Work has already begun to create Synaesthesia, which will take its place in the area’s thriving bar and restaurant scene on the corner of Alma and Russel Street, across the road from the Grind Cafe.
The new independent venue takes its name from the neurological condition that causes a blending of the senses and Operations Manager, John Gordon, and Head of Marketing, Phoebe Johnson, excitedly took Exposed through their ambitious plans to wow Sheffield residents’ senses with a stunning sounding mix of high-end food and bespoke cocktails.
“We’re incredibly excited and enthused about Synaesthesia,” says John, who has around 15 years of experience in the hospitality industry. “We’ve got an amazing opportunity to create something that’s completely unique to Sheffield.
“We began, along with our mixologist Steve and general manager Drew, by creating a bespoke cocktail menu, but we found that the food wasn’t quite matching up to it, so we were able hire Leslie Buddington, who was the head chef at Brocco [on the Park], and Leslie has crafted a menu that is absolutely phenomenal.”
“We’ve got dishes like scotch bonnet jams, sitting alongside oxtail, which is really an unbelievable dish. I’m not just saying this for the sake of saying it, these are really, really phenomenal dishes.”
Phoebe added: “We’ve also worked on a bespoke cocktail menu where we’ve got ingredients that you probably won’t find anywhere else in Sheffield. It’ll be very different, so for instance our cocktail The Runaway Bay comes with a timer and after two minutes the taste will change, or ingredients like plantain vermouth, that outside of the UK you can only get in South Africa.”
“So when you start thinking about what we’re doing with our cocktails and with the food menu, actually, Synaesthesia kind of speaks for itself. I think the name also means that we can bend the rules a little bit by playing around with what things mean, especially by manipulating the senses.”
The venue plans to tantalise and subvert expectations all day long, serving coffees, sandwiches and small plates in the daytime from an ‘interesting and intuitive lunch menu’, going through into their fine dining evening experience.
Phoebe said: “The beauty of it is that because we are doing small plates and fine dining it means you can try more and experience more flavours in one sitting and spend as much or as little as you’d like. But always enjoying high quality. I think that sets us aside a little bit.”
John added: “We always want it to be special. As soon as you walk through the door, you should be having that synaesthesia feeling and experience, there should be a fully immersive experience.”
John and Phoebe tell us that community is also very important to them and they plan to engage with locals through events and soft launches in the coming months.
“We’re really excited about what we can do and moving forward into the future with Synaesthesia,” says John. “We’ve got a great location, great food, a great bar menu and great people as well.”
As well as the food and drinks, the interiors should add even more sensory touches, so watch this space for further updates on its progress, as well as incoming socials in the coming weeks.