Informed by designs fulfilled by Archer Humphryes Architects on Hakkasan and Innecto (2001), Isarn has been conceived as a unique neighbourhood restaurant, providing a welcome antidote to the exploding market of chain restaurants on Islington’s popular Upper Street. The restaurant occupies a restricted linear site, which required ingenuity to achieve a functional and inviting dining interior.
The long narrow site (4m wide by 23m long with a 25sqm courtyard) was made an advantage, linking four areas – street elevation, bar, rear conservatory and rear courtyard – by means of a single perspective viewed from both directions.
The indoor and outdoor dining areas are linked by a conservatory hung with a natural sail cloth in a tent-like ceiling, which softens the space and foreshortens the room, making a cosier setting. The entire scheme is unified by a monochromatic palette of classic materials, accented with precious decorative points of light, designed in collaboration with Jonathan Coles.