December is always a little thin on the ground when it comes to restaurant openings. You’ll find that eagar restaurateurs will either fling open their doors earlier on in the year to ensure they have a steady flow of customers come the Christmas season – aka hospitalities busiest time of year – or, they’ll hold off and wait until the new year to ease themselves into the opening process. But nothing is deterring these new restaurants from opening! 

From a new vegan dining destination to the most exciting bar reopening of the year, here’s where to book in for this month.

Mao Chow Express

Julian Denis, the chef behind Mao Chow, the restaurant specialising the bold flavours, vibrant colours and shots of baijiu, has launched a brand new concept, and it’s just opened its doors! 

The new project with chef Harry Fox, named Mao Chow Express, has landed at Boxpark Shoreditch and will see Mao Chow’s signature style rise through the modern food court setting. The new space will be bringing 90s nostalgia to the table, featuring clashing colours of yellow, pink and chequered floor tiles and powerful flavours of chilli peppers and vinegar that linger in the air. 

The best part? It’s all vegan! Expect to be munching through the likes of ‘prawn’ toast; kung pao ‘chicken’; sweet fluffy char siu bao; and Cantonese ‘beef jerky’ fried rice. 

They’ll be donating a percentage of the profits too, to the Hackney Chinese Community Centre, which helps meet specific needs and support the welfare of the local community. 

Opening Date: 1st December
Where: Boxpark Shoreditch, 2-10 Bethnal Green Road, E1 6GY
Website: www.mao-chow.com

The restaurant champions the best of tradition, ingredients, flavours, smells and cooking techniques that have stretched across the Levant and Ottoman pinnacle for more than 3,000 years.

Jeru for Megan Brown

Jeru 

A stunning new Middle Eastern restaurant has landed on Mayfair’s Berkeley Street this month. Named Jeru, the restaurant champions the best of tradition, ingredients, flavours, smells and cooking techniques that have stretched across the Levant and Ottoman pinnacle for more than 3,000 years.

There’ll be three aspects to this beautifully designed new venue. First up is the restaurant, which opened on 2nd December, offering up a space for guests to soak up the theatrics of dining. The menu is bursting with mezze options, cured meats, charcoal roasted meats and fish. 

There’s also the bakery that’s set to be home to flakey pastries, warming bread and sweet delicacies. By night, it’ll transform into a wine bar. Lastly, there’s Layla Bar, a new destination for fine wines, spirits, cocktails and sounds. The bakery and bar will open in January.

Opening Date: 2nd December
Where: 11 Berkeley Street, Mayfair, W1J 8DS
Website: www.jeru.co.uk

The Bloomsbury Bar Club

Cocktail lovers, listen in… The Bloomsbury Bar Club has reopened! Now you have another bar to add to your ever-growing bucket list of destinations to try out in the capital…

Centred around the Bloomsbury Set, the group who rejected Victorian ideologies of religion and explored new ways of spiritual meaning through art, writing, kinships and belief in an interconnected universe, the bar is one to visit for those who love Tarot. Their array of 14 cocktails all correspond to 14 states of mind or being, linked to a special deck of Tarot cards.  

Book in for a table and sip on the likes of Black Narcissus ‘Obsessive’ made with Diplomatico Planas Rum, Belsazar Riesling Vermouth, passion fruit extract, kumquat Liqueur and Bloomsbury Club Grenadine, or the Mirror Image ‘Dreamy’, built with Mount Gay XO, beeswax infused Rémy Martin 1738, Green Chartreuse, Absinthe and blackberry tincture.

Reopening Date: From 26th November
Where: 16-22 Great Russell Street, WC1B 3NN
Website: www.thebloomsburyclub.com

Roketsu

We’ve been waiting for Roketsu for sometime now. We first reported the extraordinary launch of Daisuke Hayashi’s new London restaurant back in April but we finally have an opening date – 7th December! 

The restaurant, Roketsu, will give Londoners the chance to experience some of the finest Kaiseki flavours, combinations and traditions from one of the world-best Kaiseki masters globally. There’s a stunning sounding ten-course menu, priced at £190 per person, featuring an array of traditional Japanese dishes and seasonal ingredients.

Opening Date: 7th December
WherE: 12 New Quebec Street, W1H 7RW
Website: www.roketsu.co.uk

miscusi 

A new Italian pasta sensation has landed in London! However, miscusi is a little different from your typical restaurant, as it’s the UK’s first restaurant to introduce a new concept that rewards customers for choosing dishes that are good for the planet. 

How? With sustainability at the forefront of their mission, the four pasta dishes on the menu with the lowest carbon footprint will earn diners double points to spend through the M loyalty scheme. Essentially you’ll be able to collect four ‘seed’ points for every £1 spent and this is doubled for those who choose the low carbon dishes. For every 500 seeds, you’ll receive a £5 voucher towards your next meal. 

The restaurant itself prides itself on creating nutritionally balanced meals with the best ingredients. Menu favourites include Pacchero Tricolore, made with green pistachio, white burrata and red tomato sauce; Cacio Pepe Funghi, made with mushrooms in a creamy cheese and pepper sauce; and the all time British favourite of Carbonara.

 

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Opening Date: 1st December
Where: 23 Slingsby Place, Covent Garden, WC2H 9DL
Website: www.miscusi.uk

Galvin Bar & Grill

So we’re a little late on the news with this one admittedly but we really think you’ll love it. Michelin-starred brothers Chris and Jeff Galvin opened up a new restaurant earlier this autumn, focusing on ethically sourced produce. 

This new restaurant, housed in the dining room of Kimpton Fitzroy London, will be rooted in British cooking but offers a modern day twist, drawing on the other cultures to reflect the diversity of modern Britain. Having been open for a few months already, we can confirm it’s a huge success! 

Those yet to try can expect to tuck into dishes such as a salad of Williams pear, caramelised walnuts and Oxford blue cheese; turbot t-tone with fennel, potato terrine and a herb butter sauce; and Yorkshire grain-fed chicken cooked with smoked garlic, girolles and hasselback potatoes.

Opening Date: Open now!
Where: ​​KIMPTON FITZROY LONDON, 1-8 RUSSELL SQUARE, BLOOMSBURY, WC1B 5BE
Website: www.kimptonfitzroylondon.com

Zia Lucia Balham

Zia Lucia returns with another restaurant opening and this time you’ll find the dough experts arriving in Balham! Opening up shop on 9th December, the independent pizzeria will bring Italian flair to the community, arriving with their signature 48-hour slow-fermented dough and moreish toppings. 

Arriving on Balham High Road, this new opening is the sixth site set up by founders Claudio Vescovo and Gianluca D’Angelo. Guests will be able to choose from four types of dough, from white and wholemeal to gluten free and a vegetable charcoal black base, as well as tasty toppings including honey, burrata, truffle sauce, spicy spianata salami, blue cheese gorgonzola and roasted pepperoni. 

To celebrate the opening, they are offering 50% off all pizzas for the first week, from 9th – 15th December.

Opening Date: 9th December
Where: 65 Balham High Road, Balham, SW12 9AP
Website: www.zialucia.com


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