On Monday 12 April, restaurants, pubs, cafes and bars reopen for outdoor dining — subject to social distancing and the “rule of six” household mixing rules — after their third coronavirus lockdown. In the week leading up, there’s planning for the future, with several new openings making plans and others bedding in for the next few months.
- First, a quick and clean explainer on The Covid Rules for outdoor dining from 12 April.
- The week began with more rules, as Boris Johnson confirmed that restaurants, pubs, cafes, and bars would reopen without vaccine passports. It allayed concerns for a moment, but the government’s review into those very same vaccine passports didn’t rule out their use in hospitality after 21 June.
- Deliveroo riders went on strike in London in protest at the food delivery’s treatment of the people that ferry its cargo.
- Openings and expansions are starting to snowball as the march of time allows plans to firm up, even in still testing conditions. “Modern coffee” group Watchhouse will make a play for London domination with five new openings, with its recent tilt into slick, coffee-as-lifestyle brand definition reminiscent of Blue Bottle’s rise before it sold for hundreds of millions. Watch this space.
- Meanwhile, hit Manchester pizzeria Rudy’s will make its London debut on Wardour Street in Soho, replacing ‘Mexican’ chain Wahaca, which too started small before investment fuelled its expansion. Rudy’s will hope it emulates the expanding part, less the collapse that followed.
- Skye Gyngell’s elegant Somerset House restaurant, Spring, will open an equally elegant idyll of a food shop in Notting Hill, taking its online delivery service to west London.
And now, the good stuff:
For dining in this weekend...
- How to ship a taste of London’s restaurants nationwide, with kits including suya, udon, and some world-famous butter chicken.
- And here are some condiments to put on them, or indeed anything else.
- Order from London’s best restaurants without the apps.
- The best restaurants for delivery and takeaway.
- The best meal kits from London restaurants.
Where to order takeaway and delivery in...
And for dining out from 12 April...
- Where to eat outside in London.
- Where to eat outside in London... When it’s raining.
- The best places to eat near — or in — London parks.
- What London’s standout 38 restaurants are doing.
- The most exciting new restaurants in London right now.
- The most exciting pop-ups to check out.
- The best bakeries in London for takeaway pastries and bread.
- Where to drink the best coffee in the city.