Until now four restaurants — Din Tai Fung, Sushisamba, Vapiano and Pret — have been rumoured to be opening sites in the new Centre Point development on Tottenham Court Road. Today it was confirmation that the contract catering business and white label restaurant operator, Rhubarb, will open Vivi in April next year. It is being billed as “the flagship dining destination for the new development.” Din Tai Fung’s global and cult following would suggest that it will trump Vivi as the development’s principal draw however.
The 16,000 sq ft all-day restaurant, will have 290 covers and will occupy the main floor of the so-called bridge link at Centre Point, overlooking what the developers are calling “London’s newest public square” and its maybe-soon-to-be-pedestrianised main shopping artery, Oxford Street.
A “nostalgic British menu,” inspired by the 1960s will include “modernised” dishes such as chicken à la king — sautéed chicken, mushrooms, cream and white wine —accompanied with warm (buttermilk dumpling) biscuits; cauliflower cheese croquettes with slow roasted tomatoes and Lea & Perrins Worcestershire sauce; and banana splits for two.
The interior will include digital art and geometric patterns — including the original tiling on the edges of the iconic 34-storey grade II listed tower — as well as a central marble bar and lighting mimicking the original 1960s primary coloured toy plastic Play Plax; perhaps an ingenious way to separate itself in a market teetering towards saturation point. Perhaps.