The hotel in Clarence Parade has reopened for its 1865 restaurant – named after the founding date of the venue - with an updated menu following a major overhaul during the national lockdown.
It is a part of a £4.4m redevelopment that has revamped the hotel’s historic lobby and two floors of bedrooms, as well as the restaurant’s adjoining bar.
In the kitchen, head chef Simon Hartnett – who is ‘Pompey born and bred’ and trained at Highbury College – is looking to use his previous experience at five-star hotels to serve up a range of fish dishes.
The executive chef, who previously worked at the Harbour Hotel in Southampton, said: ‘Being a coastal hotel, we thought it was important to reflect our location with a number of fish dishes ranging from tandoori monkfish to pan roasted cod and sea bass.
‘I’ve always been interested in local produce and with experience I have learned the importance of letting just a few elements on a plate speak for themselves.’
‘I am Pompey born and bred and have always seen the Queens Hotel as a sleeping giant, with so much potential.
‘We have assembled a great kitchen team and together we have created a menu that will change seasonally and reflects the wonderful produce we have on our doorstep.’
The menu also currently features rib-eye steak, Korean cauliflower burger, and pork belly with scallops.
Food and beverage manager Jodie Chamberlain said the restaurant’s focus would be ‘a fine dining experience’.
She said: ‘We have focused on creating a relaxed fine dining experience with an emphasis on using the best possible local produce to make delicious food.
‘We want 1865 to be the restaurant you choose because it offers the best food in wonderful surroundings - and we can’t wait for people to come and sample our exciting menu.’
London design firm Studio Kinford is behind the hotel’s redevelopment, having previously designed London hotels The Connaught and the Corinthia.
The Queens Hotel currently has 76 rooms over three floors, with plans for a refurbished fourth floor to add an additional 18 rooms, subject to planning permission.