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A New Middle Eastern Restaurant Takes the Place of Coffee Roastery In Clerkenwell

“With a nod to Israeli and Jewish cuisine,” Sarona Eatery will open next month on the site formerly occupied by Workshop

Inside Sarona, in Clerkenwell
Sarona [Official Photo]

It has been confirmed that a new Middle Eastern restaurant will open on the site that was speciality coffee brand Workshop’s flagship site on Clerkenwell Road. Sarona Eatery will open in May.

The team behind it are friends Andre Avedian, Dan Levine and Stuart Swycher, who, not uniquely, “share a passion for good food and great company.” Avedian and Swycher are also jointly directors of Bloomsbury’s Fork Deli, a “bustling little independent cafe” whose Instagram alludes to a burgeoning relationship with their Clerkenwell predecessors Workshop, perhaps forged in the fiery hell that is real estate negotiation in London.

They say that Sarona will “seamlessly blend traditional Middle Eastern cuisine with the modern.”

“With a nod to Israeli and Jewish cuisine, the founders have drawn on their collective backgrounds to create a rich celebration of the best food, drink, and culture from the area,” a spokesperson told Eater.

“The menu at Sarona Eatery has been thoughtfully designed for sharing, within a contemporary and relaxed setting, making it the perfect spot for brunch, lunch, and dinner alike.”

The Clerkenwell Road site that will become Sarona’s home has sat vacant since July 2017, when Workshop Coffee abruptly closed its flagship cafe, suggesting that running a full-service cafe (in contrast to its other “coffee bar” sites) posed a “distraction” from a commitment to “providing the best coffee [they] can.”

For the three friends behind Sarona, the cavernous split-level restaurant may pose a new set of challenges to a team who have spent five years perfecting a style of service in an altogether different setting.