With reopening now seemingly set on 19 July, restaurants perhaps have more confidence in announcing next moves. With a slew of incoming openings, here’s what’s going on in the city.
- Swishy Italian group Chucs left the Zaha Hadid-designed Magazine extension to Hyde Park’s Serpentine Gallery in 2020, and in its stead arrives ... Well, it’s called The Magazine, but more interesting is its recalibration of that food world totem, seasonality. A collaboration between pedestrian cafe chain Benugo, Slovakian chef Tomas Kolkus, and high-profile spatial practitioners Daniel Fernández Pascual and Alon Schwabe leans into the idea that the four seasons — and with them, seasonal cooking — are increasingly insufficient ways for calibrating agriculture, harvest, and consumption. “The lines between spring, summer, autumn and winter are increasingly blurred, while periods of polluted oceans, soil exhaustion, subsidence, and droughts are becoming more prevalent.” This will occasion dishes like rope-grown mussels with urfa and rock samphire, and a panna cotta made with agar seaweed — but this being a London restaurant, it’s still serving asparagus in late spring / early summer.
- Longstanding Kensington Filipino restaurant Romulo will make a big entrance in Soho with Kasa and Kin, taking over the sizeable Comptoir Libanais restaurant at 52 Poland Street. The all-day affair is promising Pinoy robata grill cooking in the evening and “imbento” (Tagalog for “create”) boxes come lunch, but the star may well be the baking, promising calamansi citrus tarts and pandan flan.
- Million Pound Menu winner Jay Morjaria is launching something called “Mamma Pastrama” in central London this summer, which promises a “modern take on the pastrami sandwich” and is “seeking to reinvent the feverishly revered pastrami.” ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ [Big Hospitality]
- The prestigious Leiths Cookery School thinks one of the answers to the Brexit x COVID-19 staffing situation in hospitality is 100 free places on its courses, thanks to a grant of £750,000.
- Islington burger stars Four Legs are seeking to open a pub in Finsbury Park this September with the help of a £75,000 crowdfund.
- World-famous for being flaky and salty isn’t an insult to Maldon — whose new redesign was a chance to take a history tour of its place in the culinary world.
- Outstanding Grays Inn Road cafe Catalyst will herald the departure of head chef Vasilis Chamam with a pop-up hosting Nick Molyviatis, formerly head chef at northern Thai-inspired Kiln in Soho.
- A new pre-watershed ban on “junk food” TV advertisement has been praised by “obesity” campaigners and criticised by advertisers. Water is indeed wet. [Guardian]
- Good tweet:
I don’t know, is this anything? pic.twitter.com/5lbz74ThZq— Raphael Bob-Waksberg (@RaphaelBW) June 18, 2021