Gone in 60 Minutes: The Rise of the Express Lunch

By Lottie Hulme |
11th June 2019

Lunch at work: the time of day when you make a desperate dash to your local store and pick up food you don’t really want to eat, or you spend an extortionate amount on a takeaway only to feel like you need 400 trips to the gym to work it off. All we really want is to snack on something sumptuous as speedy as possible, to avoid the gruelling glare of a boss unhappy.

Which is why, luckily, some restaurants are catering to our munching needs with Express Lunches; the latest trend that sees high-brow restaurants rustling up an express business menu for those who hold blackberry in one hand, and juggle their life in the other.

All aboard the menu express!

Hammer & Tongs

Hammer & Tongs

Hammer & Tongs have just launched a new express lunch, which takes just 15 minutes to prepare and comes with bottomless tea or coffee to get you through the afternoon slump. The menu includes honey chicken sosatie or free range spiced pork belly sosatie with the likes of honey braai carrot and couscous and feta salad as well as braaiboodjie  and Cape Malay curry.

Duration: 15 minutes to prepare and then as long as you can take for lunch!

Where: 171 Farringdon Road, London EC1R 3AL, UK
Nearest station: Farringdon (London) (0.4 miles)
Website: Book Here

Laurent

Laurent

Don’t want to get the 4pm carb induced slump? Then head to Laurent at Hotel Café Royal who are now offering bento boxes alongside their open grill and sushi dishes. Created by the restaurant’s sushi masters the boxes can served in a speedy 45 minutes if you’re in a rush and include salmon and yellowtail nigiri, yellowtail and ahi tuna sashimi, Asian salad with ponzu dressing, crispy shrimp and spicy tuna maki and a mango-pineapple chia seed parfait. Beats going to your usual sandwich place…

Duration: 45 minutes

Where: 68 Regent Street, W1B 4DY
Website: www.laurentatcaferoyal.com

Indian Accent

Indian Accent

Although you might not immediately jump to Indian food when pondering your lunch hour, Mayfair’s Indian Accent is here to change your ways. Led by Chef Manish Mehrotra, the menu boasts the option of a starter, a main and five side dishes, sure to fill your belly… and potentially give you that post-lunch slumber.

The bold flavours of Indian are felt throughout the menu, blatant in summer dishes such as Kerala seafood stew and pink pepper tadka; and roast beet, goat’s cheese raita and pistachio chikki. If it’s pay day, why not add a tasty treat in the form of one of Indian Accent’s delightful desserts; we’re talking rhubarb murabba and coconut jaggery ice cream and more. Scrumptious!

Duration: 45 minutes

Where: Indian Accent, Albemarle Street, London, UK
Nearest station: Green Park (0.3 miles)
Website: www.indianaccent.com

Isabel

Isabel

Isabel’s is proof in the pudding (or lunch, if you will) that you don’t need to compromise on taste just because its a super quick process. The recent launch of their Express Lunch Menu will see suitcase swingers popping in for all of the favourites. This includes Isabel’s famed pizzette, the base of which comprises of the restaurant’s signature freshly-baked arepas, a savoury pancake-style dish made from a special cornflour, popular in South America. Feeling a bit freaky? Treat yourself to a white or red wine, or if you’ve got that TGIF feelin’, you can even punt for a cocktail. Ooo!

Duration: 60 minutes.

Where: 26 Albemarle Street, Mayfair, W1S 4HY
Website: www.isabelw1.london

Angler
South Place Hotel www.jamesbedford.com

Angler

There’s so much to enjoy on the Angler express lunch menu. First off, if you book for a 12pm sitting you get a complimentary glass of bubbles – say what! Plus, there are an array of delectable dishes on offer, two of which you can enjoy for £30, and three for £34 (add wine pairing if you’re feeling naughty… it might make work more interesting?) Angler are famed for their varietal dishes. From Wye Valley Asparagus to John Dory, or Chocolate Pavé, you can enjoy lip-smacking dishes galore from this express lunch offering.

Duration: 60 minutes.

Where: South Place Hotel, 3 South Place, EC2M 2AF
Website: www.anglerrestaurant.com

Sexy Fish

Sexy Fish

As sexy as sexy can be is the Sexy Fish express lunch menu. Interiors are swish and sophisticated and the space makes for a ideal spot to schmooze during your working lunch. Expect dishes that include rice bowls such as a donburi made with Japanese eels and avocado, crispy prawn gyoza, yellowtail maki and salmon teriyaki. The creative dishes come off the Kuikku menu, meaning “quick” in Japanese. Well done Sexy Fish, we see what you did there!

Duration: 60 minutes

Where: Berkeley Square House, Berkeley Square, London W1J 6BR, UK
Nearest station: Green Park (0.3 miles)
Website: www.sexyfish.com

Duddell's

Duddell's

Working professionals who spent the morning as strong, independent keyboard warriors: listen up! Modern Cantonese restaurant Duddell’s, which threw open its doors (thank goodness) in 2017, has introduced a scrumptious express lunch offering.

Dig into dim sum, sip some hot and sour soup, and if a stressful day at the office requires a bit of sweetening up, opt for the main course option which comes with vanilla baked yoghurt with kataifi and pineapple sorbet.

Duration: 60 minutes

Where: 9A St. Thomas Street, SE1 9RY
Website: www.duddells.co

Street XO

Street XO

Located in our fabulous city and also in Madrid, Street XO is an express lunch offering with an edge. StreetXO London is Chef Dabiz Munoz’s high’s octane restaurant located in Mayfair. So, if you fancy a bit of fine dining on your lunch break, Street XO is probably the perfect place to take someone for a schmooze, serving up dishes that take inspiration from European, Asian and South American cuisines, with a backbone of primarily Mediterranean or East Asian flavours. What’s more, the spot promises real express, with the service lasting approx. 30 minutes. The express lunch menu features a 4-course menu, as a brainchild from chef David Munoz.

Duration: 30 minutes

Where: 15 Old Burlington Street Mayfair W1S 2JR
Website: www.streetxo.com

Roganic

Roganic

Marylebone restaurant, Roganic, are fully on board the express bandwagon with their lunchtime rush offerings. Heading up the afternoon delights is chef Simon Rogan, with a fine dining menu including dry-aged Cornish lamb and mackerel with radish. Diners will enjoy a seven course tasting menu that will include asparagus, bone marrow, leek ash; 21 day dry aged cumbrian pork; smoked juniper fudge and more. So, whilst you might have to be rolled back to work, at least you’ll be well fed.

Duration: 60 minutes

Where: 5-7 Blandford Street, Marylebone, W1U 3DB
Website: www.roganic.uk

The Rib Room Bar and Restaurant

The Rib Room Bar and Restaurant

How about this for a deal? The Rib Room Bar and Restaurant promise to deliver your two course lunch in 60 minutes or it’s lunch on the house. The Knightsbridge locale boasts a super-duper speedy à la carte menu showcasing the best of British seasonal ingredients, including braised lamb neck shepherd’s pie, smoked Applewood mash and buttered kale, and rhubarb Eton mess. So, if you’re hankering after that Sloane Square shoe sale, but need to grab a bite in between, it’s The Rib Room Bar and Restaurant for you.

Duration: 60 minutes

 

Where: Jumeirah Carlton Tower, Cadogan Place, Knightsbridge, SW1X 9PY

Roka

Roka

Renowned for their psychedelic installations during cherry blossom season, Roka is the award-winning Japanese restaurant on everyone’s lips. And, weighing in on the creativity, is their express lunch menu which can be consumed within 45-minutes, we’re told. Taking place at the Aldwych and Canary Wharf locations, guests benefit from a selection of five dishes for the table and a dish of their choosing from the robata grill. If you’re big on sashimi, gyozas and other Japanese must-eats then this express lunch is for you.

Duration: 45 minutes

Website: www.rokarestaurant.com

The English Grill

The English Grill

Running from 12h30 – 14h30, The English Grill provides a lunch that will have you smacking your lips for the whole duration. Choose between two or three courses including our pan fried chicken livers, daily pies and decadent rosemary panna cotta. Ideal for those that like to grab-n-go, this is yet another express lunch that proves a microwave meal just doesn’t cut the cloth.

Where: The English Grill, 39 Buckingham Palace Road, Westminster, SW1W 0PS
Website: www.rubenshotel.com

Oblix West

Oblix West

Elevating themselves to new foodie heights, Oblix West has launched their express lunch menu. The Elevator Lunch will allow those often rushed off their feet to travel up and down within the hour, with a menu that includes serious view goals and dishes such as steak tartare, beetroot, goat’s curd and rye crumble, or the truffle flatbread with pancetta and ricotta in keeping with tradition.

Where: The Shard, 31 St Thomas Street, Southwark, SE1 9RY
Website: www.oblixrestaurant.com

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