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New Food ‘Theatre’ Brings a Handful of the City’s Hottest Restaurants to Central London

Tātā Eatery’s new sando shop, Harts Group’s next restaurant, Selin Kiazim’s Oklava, and more join London’s newest food hall

Arcade Food Theatre food hall at Centre Point brings some of London’s best restaurants to Tottenham Court Road El Pastor: Samuel Ashton; Tātā Eatery: [Official Photo]; Chotto Matte: [Official Photo]; Pophams Bakery: Issy Croker; Flat Iron: [Official Photo]; Oklava: Ola Smit; Composite: Eater London

Arcade Food Theatre, a huge new London food theatre, will bring some of London’s best restaurants to Centre Point on New Oxford Street when it opens on 22 July.

TāTā Eatery’s new katsu sando shop and rice bowl operation, Tóu, will take the inaugural spot in ‘The Loft,’ which is described as an “incubation-focused mezzanine kitchen space.” Zijun Meng and Ana Gonçalves’ cooking at Tayēr + Elementary on Old Street — their first permanent restaurant space in London — is already winning serious plaudits, and this shop’s focus on their now-legendary katsu sando and rice cookery is, arguably, headline news.

Joining Tóu are:

Arcade Food Theatre brings some of London’s best restaurants to Centre Point Arcade Food Theatre [Official Photo]

The 12,500 square foot space will add a seventh ground-floor operator to its roster in the coming weeks; the kitchens will be joined by three bars, offering “a broad menu of bespoke cocktails, craft beer and wine, developed exclusively for Arcade by some of London’s most sought-after mixologists.”

Each kitchen will have counter seating, in a style distinct from both Spitalfields Market’s ‘Kitchens’ and Market Halls Victoria or Fulham, as planning documents have shown since early 2019. Ultimately, it sounds more evolved — even sophisticated — than either of those, focussing on the experience of each kitchen rather than treating operators as stations to cherry pick food from.

Such an impressive raft of operators should be a boon to Centre Point’s food scene: the promised Din Tai Fung is yet to open; Vivi, the 1960s-inspired flagship, has been reviewed poorly, and Vapiano’s casual Italian dining and Pret a Manger’s Pret a Manger menu can only do so much.

It’s also another addition to London’s exponentially growing food court scene built on either new iterations or straight duplications — not negatively — of successful bricks-and-mortar operations, which is evidently proving an attractive route to market for mixed-use operators and investors, and an attractive means of expansion for successful restaurants. Market Halls recently received a £20 million private equity injection, with its two sites in Victoria and Fulham soon to be joined by Market Halls West End and, in 2020, Canary Wharf; the Kitchens at Spitalfields continues to iterate, despite concerns from some operators over rents, and strangely short opening hours for restaurants arguably best suited to evening trade. Kerb’s off-street-street food market will be an interesting addition to Covent Garden. Centre Point’s interesting approach to unsold apartments will always be in the background here, too, as diners flock to the restaurants below empty luxury flats.

Arcade Food Theatre Food Hall will open at Centre Point
Arcade’s striking branding
Arcade Food Theatre [Official Photo]

Ultimately: Arcade has one of the strongest opening lineups of any of its competitors, rivalled only by Market Halls Victoria. It also has an all-day-and-night opening schedule, and it will be mixed-use, bringing digital art installations from global galleries and live music to the party, at a location whose central position near Tottenham Court Road’s soon-to-be refurbished station could make for a destination.

The catch, though, is that it probably didn’t anticipate having to do a the work to make Centre Point a destination all by itself.

More soon on dishes and opening menus: Arcade Food Theatre will open in July at Centre Point, 103 - 105 New Oxford Street, WC1A 1DD.

Coal Drops Yard

Stable Street, , England N1C 4DQ 020 3883 2087 Visit Website

Flat Iron Square

Union Street, , England SE1 1TD Visit Website

El Pastor

6-7A Stoney Street, , England SE1 9AA Visit Website

Pophams Bakery

19 Prebend Street, , England N1 8PF Visit Website

Flat Iron

112-116 Tooley Street, , England SE1 2TH Visit Website

Borough Market

8 Southwark Street, , England SE1 1TL 020 7407 1002 Visit Website

TĀTĀ Eatery

152 Old Street, , England EC1V 9BW Visit Website

Casa do Frango

32 Southwark Street, , England SE1 1TU 020 3972 2323 Visit Website

Tayēr + Elementary

152 Old Street, , England EC1V 9BW Visit Website

Oklava

74 Luke St, , England EC2A 4PY 020 7729 3032 Visit Website

Spitalfields Market

56 Brushfield Street, , England E1 6AA 020 7377 1496 Visit Website

Tortilleria El Pastor

58 Stanworth Street, , England SE1 3NY Visit Website

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