One of NDG’s highest-end restaurants has closed its doors, as it was announced this morning that Hopkins will not return from its winter break.
The Monkland Village restaurant opened in mid-2017 under chef Liam Hopkins and creative director Nicolina Servello, with interesting dishes like a very particular duck ravioli or bone marrow flan, earning it mostly positive reviews, including three stars from Lesley Chesterman.
Over time, Liam Hopkins departed, leaving Servello as the sole owner; in that time, the restaurant pivoted more towards Italian cuisine, although it kept up its fine dining approach in a neighbourhood that’s characterized more by casual options (for example, the great but definitely less formal Monkland Tavern).
A short farewell note was issued, noting that the closure came after “heartfelt deliberation”.
“We had set out to create an elegant dining experience in our beloved neighborhood and were absolutely blown away by the response.”
The note reserved special thanks for Hopkins too, thanking him for allowing the restaurant to keep its name, and for his support even after his departure. (obviously, it was an amicable separation).
“The creativity and innovation that you poured into each dish was only surpassed by your passion”.
The space on Monkland at Oxford will not devolve into an empty storefront though — Servello is keeping it, and planning to open something new later this winter. Details are slim at this stage, but it’s billed as offering “a much more approachable take on elevated dining” (suggesting something more casual), and it will draw on Mediterranean cuisine(s).