Another month has passed, we’re rattling through the year at an alarming rate…you’re restaurant bucket list is also going to be getting even longer as in the last 31 days we’ve seen 22 new restaurants and bars open. There have been debut restaurants from MasterChef contenders, pop-ups becoming permanent, places dedicated to brunch and new offerings from hotels. July’s been a good one.
The 24/7 restaurant is already in Notting Hill, Chelsea and Bloomsbury and this month it opened in Aldgate in the Dorsett City Hotel. Want halloumi fries with tzatziki at 2am? No problem? Need a sticky toffee pudding fix at 5:30am? Sorted. Live off brunch and need eggs benedict at 6pm? Done. You get our drift… they serve food 24/7.
Named after the island that sits between Indian and Sri Lanka, Pamban will serve a menu of chai and coffee drinks that brings together the cultures and tastes of Sri Lanka and India. Over at the espresso counter they’ll be making the likes of a red cappuccino and kulfi affogato – an Asian take on the Italian classic.Feast on Bun Maska – a sweet bread bun served with tropical jams and jaggery, Lamprais and Pamban rolls, deep-fried rolled pancakes filled with lamb, chicken or vegetables.
The Italian steak experts at Macellaio RC, founded by Roberto Costa, opened their fourth London venue on Northcote Road. This restaurant joins their existing sites in South Kensington, Exmouth Market and Union Street. It has an emphasis on Italian wines, hand-picked by Roberto Costa and will uniquely combine restaurant and butcher with their renowned Fassona beef, butchered and dry-aged on-site. It’ll then be served as carpaccio with rocket and Parmigiano Reggiano; as a slow-cooked ragu with homemade tagliatelle and simply as a steak with rock salt and Tuscan extra virgin olive oil.
This month Broadway Market saw the opening of Tuyo, a new pinchos restaurant. The menu, which is created by Chef Ricardo Pimentel (Salt Yard Group), brings together Mediterranean and Levantine dishes with a Spanish twist. There’ll be Spanish and Italian cheeses and charcuterie; harissa lamb rump with pisto, black olive couscous and pistachio; duck and figs with pearl barley, gremolata, pomegranate, carrot puree and smoked almonds and Picos blue and date croquetas.
At the start of the month, Gabeto opened in one of the Victorian stable blocks in Camden Market. Gabeto (which is means ‘our house’ in Spanish) sees, former Chiltern Firehouse chef, Lee Andrews heading up the kitchen to create a menu that brings together British ingredients with Latin flavours. Tacos, rare-breed steaks and small plates including the likes of beetroot-cured salmon and chorizo Scotch eggs make up the signature dishes.
The second temper restaurant from Neil Rankin opened this month in Angel Court. Fire and wine will still be at the core, with meat (which is butchered on site) being cooked low and slow over oak ad charcoal, but this time the menu will be all about curries from different countries. There’ll be mutton rolls and laksa lamb belly stovies to start; lamb scotch bonnet vindaloo; dry goat; meatball marrow masala; Dashi chip shop chicken and crispy egg with katsu.
Chris Frichot and Saba Tsegaye are well aware how big the London restaurant scene is, and how tough it can be, which is why they’ve called their restaurant, Minnow – because they’re going to ‘be a small, but fiercely independent fish in a big pond’. The neighbourhood restaurant is serving up modern European dishes, plenty of cocktails and brunch at the weekend. Heading up the kitchen is Jake Boyce (former Head Chef of Jason Atherton’s Social Wine and Tapas) and dishes include squid with lemongrass, lime and ginger; baby octopus with curry leaf paste and charred green mango; whole roast poussin from Minnow’s Robata grill and caramelised watermelon with a blood orange and Campari sorbet.
The Dayrooms Cafe
Anyway, boutique brand, The Dayrooms have launched The Dayrooms Café and it’s a Melbourne inspired brunch and coffee specialist. Created by Head Chef, Andrei Anechitei, the all – day menu is largely healthy, but as life is all about balance there will be a few more indulgent options too, so expect to find the likes of bagel royale with green hollandaise, poached eggs, flaked smoked salmon and beetroot puree on a bagel; crunchy coconut Bircher muesli; croissants loaded with truffle scrambled egg, and honeycomb hotcake with raspberry crème fraiche and miso caramel.
No 29 Power Station West
Part of the Darwin & Wallace group (the team behind neighbourhood bars such as No 32 The Old Town and No 11 Pimlico Road), No 29 Power Station West has opened as part of Circus West Village. With a stripped back utilitarian feel, the pub will make the most of the area’s industrial heritage and will feature over 100 pieces of hand-picked and crafted furniture, tiles and artwork in the bar. To drink there’ll be over 30 wines, 20 craft, draught and bottled beers as well as cocktails including a Watermelon Sour and Passionfruit Caipirinha, whilst to eat you’ll have avocado lime and chilli on sourdough for breakfast and for lunch coconut poached chicken salad.
Ahi Poké have just launched their second site and this time it’s in Victoria. Open daily, they serve up fresh bowls of poke (takeaway only) making it your new go to lunch spot, if you work in the area. You can choose a signature bowl such as the fiery Heatwave, or get creative and make your own by choosing from the likes of quinoa, rice, kale, salmon, ahi tuna, sirracha mayo and kimchee cucumber.
Brought to you by James Ramsden and Sam Herlihy, the duo behind Michelin-starred Pidgin, Magpie has opened on Heddon Street and is a modern, British interpretation of traditional dim sum restaurants. Served straight from a trolley, dishes will include the likes of mackerel crudo with blueberry kosho and fennel pollen and Hoi An-style terrine with nukazuke pickles. From the kitchen will come hot dishes including udon noodles with paitan broth, calabrese sausage and cavolo nero. Fans of Pidgin will find some of its favourite dishes on the small a la carte menu including Galician dairy cow with lobster, pommes, sarladaises and charred lettuce. For pudding, there’ll be strawberry panzanella with olive oil ice cream, a prickly pear with roasted miso custard and hibiscus and a secret off menu dish…intriguing.
This month saw the opening of Bufle, a new bubble waffle and cocktail bar in Soho. Having been popular in Hong Kong since the 1950s, the team are on a mission to make them just as popular over here in London and whilst a few have already popped up, Bufle will not only be selling the sweet, golden waffles but also cocktails inspired by the Far East. Toppings for the waffles include the Oreo Delight – a waffle filled with cookies and cream gelato and topped with Oreo chocolate cookies and the Funky Cereal Club, a waffle filled with bubble gum flavoured gelato, topped with rainbow cereal and fresh strawberries.
Born in the meatpacking district of Copenhagen, mother is known for its signature sourdough pizza made with seawater and cooked in a wood fired oven and now founders David Biffani and Nick Pound have brought it to London as they opened in Circus West Village this month. They marked the opening with an all day pizza party giving away 2000 pizzas for free.
Tom Simmons, Tower Bridge
In 2011, Welsh chef, Tom Simmons was the youngest competitor to get to the quarter finals in MasterChef – The Professionals, now he has opened his first restaurant. Originally from Pembrokeshire, Tom’s respect for nature and cooking will be a central part of the restaurant, both in the design and in the menu which will use produce such as Welsh lamb from Preseli Blue Stone, Orkney scallops from Keltic Seafare and foraged mushrooms from Fine France. He’ll be bringing together British and French cuisine with an emphasis on his heritage to create dishes such as: roast cod loin, asparagus, haddock scotch egg with hollandaise, braised ox cheek with pommes puree and bourguignon sauce and for pudding, rhubarb panna cotta with Granny Smith sorbet and ginger biscuits.
Following on from Tombo in South Kensington and Soho, Tombo have just opened a Japanese inspired poké and matcha bar in Fitzrovia. The new cafe features a maple tree in the centre and will be serving array of poké dishes, all of which are made using the highest quality fish from Ataryiya Japanese fish suppliers to give the freshest possible taste. Choices include the Classic Poké comprising of salmon or tuna, sesame soy, onion, edamame, sesame seeds and nori; Terriyaki Chicken with terriyaki sauce, spring onion and sesame seeds and the Salmon Avocado Lux with wasabi soy, edamame, avocado, salmon roe and nori.
Created by The Langham London and the team behind Artesian, The Wigmore is named after Robert Harley, Baron of Wigmore of Herefordshire, 1st Earl of Oxford and Earl Mortimer – quite the man. Designed by Martini Brudnizki (Aquavit, Sexy Fish, The Ivy Chelsea Garden) The Wigmore which is housed in a former bank, will have a luxury, polished feel to it and Harley’s coat of arms will be seen throughout, giving a nod to the history of taverns.Food is overseen by Michel Roux Jr with dishes including raised veal and ham pie; devilled lamb’s kidneys and paprika-glazed short rib with bone barrow crumb.
Mint Gun Club
July saw the opening of Mint Gun Club, a new tea house, bar and delicatessen opening in Stoke Newington from Richard Hunt (Milk + Honey, Mahiki and Hawksmoor). It focuses on globally-inspired cocktails, fine teas and pantry-style food from Middle Eastern, Asian and Mediterranean larders. You can also pick and choose ingredients to make platters or you can buy ingredients to takeaway for picnics or your next dinner party.
The Waney family (Roka, Zuma and The Arts Club) opened Meraki, a contemporary Greek restaurant in Fitzrovia. Meraki serves the finest Mediterranean ingredients, that the team have scoured the length and breadth of Greece for. You’ll find bottarga from Mesologgi, graviera cheese from Naxos and galotiri cheese from Crete. Heading up the kitchen will be Greek chef Dimitrios Siamanis and dishes will include slow-cooked ox cheek with hilopites from Trikala with artichokes and graviera; baked cod wrapped in vine leaves with artichokes and broad beans in a mussel broth and changing mezze dishes, chargrilled meats and whole fish dishes.
Following on from the success of his Street Feast residencies and the Leeds Trinity Kitchen site, Mark Wright has opened his first permanent Rola Wala restaurant and it’s in Spitalfields. Serving up healthy ‘everyday Indian’ fast food, the menu will include fresh handmade sourdough naan rolls, seasonal grain bowls, vegan Red Dal and Nagaland lamb. Not a fan of spice? Not a problem you can choose your spice level from no spice at all right up to the world’s hottest chilli.
RIGO’ is the Piedmontese word for a journey of rigorous research, it’s also the name of the new restaurant from Gonzalo Luzarraga and Francesco Ferretti.The journey that this restaurant will be telling, is Gonzalo’s own journey from when he first tasted his grandfather’s bread on the French borders of Italy to mastering classical French techniques in Alain Ducasse’s institutional Le Louis XV. They’re telling the story through the medium of food, using unusual flavours and lesser known ingredients. The six- course signature menu will tell the full story and will include Gonzalo’s signature dish of sea urchin with bagna caoda, quail egg and fermented milk. Other dishes on the menu include tomato tart with Heart of Camone, stracciatella barese and verbena extract and porcini brûlé with chestnut cream and black sesame.
Jean-Georges at The Connaught
World-renowned chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten has just opened his new restaurant Jean Georges at The Connaught. Overlooking Mount Street, the relaxed all-day restaurant will be serving up an eclectic menu inspired by Jean-Georges’ experiences of the Far East and his signature use of South-east Asian flavours, whilst taking on British and Connaught classics. Dishes include roasted John Dory with ginger-chilli; seared salmon with cherry tomatoes, crackling rice, spicy miso broth and Cornish lamb chops with crispy onions, mint puree, cucumber and yoghurt.