On Monday 12 April, restaurants, pubs, cafes and bars reopened for outdoor dining — subject to social distancing and the “rule of six” household mixing rules — after their third coronavirus lockdown. Two weeks in, the sun is sticking around — but the future is still uncertain.
- First, a quick and clean explainer on The Covid Rules for outdoor dining from 12 April. Boris Johnson broke those very rules, the rules his government set, in a pub photo opp this week. Plus ça change.
- As outdoor dining resumed in London, restaurants wanted to be clear that “the struggle is not over yet.” After a whole week to digest what’s going on, six restaurants dished on what outdoor reopening means to them.
- And, more and more restaurants are opening up for outdoor dining across the city.
- Openings and expansions are starting to snowball as the march of time allows plans to firm up, even in still testing conditions. This week was one for ambitious, high-end fans: Gymkhana owners JKS will back chef Chet Sharma on a new Mayfair restaurant that looks like it’s shooting for stars, while inventive seafood restaurant/fishmonger The Sea, The Sea will open in Haggerston.
- It was also one for fans of pizza, pasta, and abbondanza. Eataly, the gargantuan paean to all things Italian food, announced plans for its 42,000 square feet opening in Liverpool Street.
- Two more openings in a busy week: Italian steak group Macellaio RC will open on Shaftesbury Avenue, while the Museum of the Home — formerly the Geffrye — in Hoxton has a cafe coming from the team behind esteemed gastropub The Anchor and Hope.
- The backdrop of all this activity is Covid-19’s continued devastation of hospitality employment. Of over 800,000 jobs lost in the year March 2020 — 21, almost half were in the sector. The sun may be shining, but the future is uncertain.
And now, the good stuff:
For dining out...
- Where to eat outside in London.
- Where to eat outside in London... When it’s raining.
- Where to get some terrific tacos...
- And outstanding Indo-Caribbean roti.
- Sunday roasts to eat al fresco, or finish at home.
- Outdoor slurping at London’s best ramen spots.
- 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.
And 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...