New restaurant Commonwealth to open in Angad Arts hotel in August

In mid to late August, a new concept will occupy the ground floor of the Angad Arts Hotel (3550 Samuel Shepard Dr.) in the space that previously held Grand Tavern. The restaurant, Commonwealth, aims to serve “modern European cuisine” from over 54 countries and to explore “the rich history of the British Commonwealth countries,” according to a press release.

“What we’re doing is taking dishes from around the world, the majority from the Commonwealth empire, but putting a modern twist on them,” explained Josh Weast, the director of food and beverage for the hotel. He went on to say that the restaurant will serve everything from Tikka Masala to fresh oysters and fish. Other dishes will include curried mussels, rack of lamb with candied Brussels sprouts, cast-iron scallops and more.

Commonwealth's chef de cuisine Scottie Corrigan explained the restaurant's signature dessert, the Starry Night. “It’ll be a chocolate torte with chocolate cream patisserie and blueberry gelée, with a mirror glaze, served on a black plate. Each one will be unique."

Regarding the beverage program, there will be wines from across the world, from California to South Africa, Weast said. Beers will mostly be imported from England, Germany, Jamaica, Canada and beyond; the cocktail menu will feature a mix of updated classic cocktails and original creations.

Weast said that the space will look a bit different than it did when when it was Grand Tavern. “We did do a light remodel, a light refresh," he pointed out. "We didn’t do a major gut, but we did some refreshment."

Initially, Commonwealth will be open daily from 7 to 11 a.m. for breakfast; it will be open for dinner Tuesday to Thursday from 4 to 10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 4 to 11 p.m.

Weast offered further background on the concept, which he acknowledged could invoke Britain’s history of violence in building the Commonwealth of Nations. “When the owner’s son first thought of the name, we talked it over. That was brought up,” he said, pointing out that the menu is in part an homage to the late Angad Paul, the British businessman and former partner for whom the hotel is named; Paul was the son of Swraj Paul, who took over development of the hotel after his son passed away. “We thought of Commonwealth as countries coming together, dishes reflecting the owner and his heritage,” Weast said. “Commonwealth is more bringing people and different foods and drinks and wines together.”