Keep your finger on the pulse with our guide to the best new restaurants in London. From cool brunch spots to fine dining venues, these are the buzziest openings of 2019-20…
Berkeley Square has had a Latin American shake-up, thanks to an exciting new opening from acclaimed husband and wife duo Sandro Silva and Marta Seco. Taking over the 13,000 sq ft space in the former Allied Irish Bank Building, Amazónico has been launched in partnership with D.Ream International, the restaurant group behind Coya and Zuma – and you can expect equally opulent, striking interiors as seen their previous projects. Amazónico promises to offer a sensory experience for guests, with rainforest-themed décor, live music and a vibrant culinary offering, featuring everything from Peruvian sushi to traditional Brazilian dishes.
A new botanical-themed rooftop restaurant has opened in the heart of the city, filled floor to ceiling with plants and trees and boasting panoramic views of London. It’s a beautiful space, with an oval onyx bar as the restaurant’s centrepiece alongside garden-style interiors including a canopy of evergreen plants and seasonal plants growing across the ceiling. Heading up the kitchen is Thomas Piat, formerly executive chef at Daniel Boulud’s Bar Boulud, with a focus on modern British cooking with French and European influences – signature dishes on the menu include a venison sharing dish, alongside a seafood starter of white crab, cauliflower and oscietra caviar.
Richard Corrigan’s third venture is located in Old Street, a collaboration with fellow Irishmen John Nugent (Green & Fortune) and Tony Gibney (Gibney’s of Malahide). It’s distinctly more relaxed than Corrigan’s other two London restaurants – Bentley’s Oyster Bar & Grill and Corrigan’s Mayfair – with a snug saloon bar downstairs playing host to a series of live music nights. Upstairs there’s a 50-cover restaurant, offering an array of wholesome dishes (Hereford sirloin, homegrown vegetables, grilled lamb chops and pork belly) alongside a dedicated oyster bar.
Acclaimed chef Has Vedat (Yosma, Havarda) moves East with his latest venture BARBOUN, which sits on Shoreditch’s Great Eastern Street. Translating as ‘red mullet’ in Turkish, BARBOUN is inspired by the flavours of Levantine coastal towns: Cyprus, Turkey, Lebanon, Israel and Syria. Open flame cooking is the name of the game here, with plates designed to be shared: think tomahawk steak marinated in Antolian spices, monkfish with zhoug and grilled wild sea bass, alongside moreish dips like smoked aubergine and taramasalata.
Wild by Tart is the latest venture from Lucy Carr-Ellison and Jemima Jones, the foodie duo behind boutique catering company Tart London. After a few years spent feeding the world’s fashion elite, they set their sights on transforming a former power station in Belgravia into a manifestation of their blossoming brand. This is comprised of a deli, event space, photography studio, retail store, and the most recent addition: an all-day restaurant. There’s a touch of New York to this endlessly cool spot, which is in fact where the pair first met – think industrial-inspired interiors, high ceilings and plants galore. When asked what kind of food they cook, Lucy and Jemima simply say they make what they love. Wild by Tart is a farm-to-table style restaurant, with a menu focused around seasonal and local dishes designed to be shared. Expect vibrant colours and big flavours: we particularly loved the grilled halloumi with honey, lime, chilli and coriander; the flamed lamb chops with red curry paste and peanut; and the pumpkin, gorgonzola and pickled chilli flatbread, cooked in the wood oven. Everything has a wholesome feel – though it’s not overly healthy, and the dessert menu is well worth exploring: there’s a particularly delicious miso caramel cookie skillet, designed to be shared between two. The intimate corner tables make for ideal date settings, while the long communal tables are perfect for bigger groups – and wherever you sit, you’ll be in view of the long open kitchen, which is a lovely touch.
Health foodies will be happy to hear Alex Hely-Hutchinson has opened a follow-up to her much-loved porridge mecca 26 Grains. Located in the heart of Borough Market, Stoney Street – named after its home – is a similar vibe to its Covent Garden sibling, though slightly more refined and with a longer menu. Open all day and run by Henrietta Inman, Stoney Street focuses on simple seasonal dishes, with breakfast options ranging from milk crèpes to slow roasted tomato galette, alongside a bakery counter stacked high with seasonal tarts and pastries for those on the go. As evening approaches, the kitchen dishes up plates such as pollock with fennel and braised lentils; pappardelle with a wild mushroom, sorrel and tarragon sauce; and bavette with Swiss chard, Taleggio and slow-roasted shallots.
Have these cold climates got you dreaming of sunnier days in Ibiza? Satisfy your yearning for the Balearic island at IT, an Ibiza import just launched in the heart of Mayfair. Helmed by two Gennaro Esposito of two Michelin-starred Torre del Saracen, IT offers a mix of gourmet Mediterranean dishes, with a focus on flavours from southern Italy. Like its sister restaurants, music is central, with a soundtrack bringing a slice of Ibiza energy to London town.
The world’s first zero-waste restaurant, headed up by Douglas McMaster, has opened a second branch in London’s Hackney Wick following the success of its original Brighton location. From trading directly with farmers to composting leftover scraps in the kitchen’s own compost machine, Silo’s continuing aim is to ‘close the loop’ in the food production process. The restaurant serves a daily dinner menu of 10-15 dishes, such as smoked violet carrots with egg yolks; and Jerusalem artichokes cooked on fire with stilton sauce and pickles. On weekends, Silo is open for brunch too, offering everything from porridge to kimchi to on-site brewed kombucha. Housed on the upper floor of The White Building, the quirky space features interiors designed by Nina Woodcraft – who is known for her commitment to sustainable design – alongside material conservationist Seetal Solanki.
Modern Eastern Mediterranean restaurant Brother Marcus has launching a third site in Spitalfields Market following the success of their branches in Balham and Angel. Their largest site yet, the Spitalfields location continues to champion locally sourced, top quality produce with an all-day menu. Many of their signature brunch dishes will be available, including the much-loved Step Sister: sweet potato, courgette and feta fritters with avocado, spinach, kale, turmeric yoghurt and a poached egg. Lunches, meanwhile, will involve Mediterranean plates, salads, wraps and freshly-baked Turkish pide breads, and as the evening draws in diners are encouraged to linger over slow-cooked sharing dishes and glasses of natural wine at candlelit tables.
The Gladwin brothers have ventured into the West End with their new culinary project, Sussex. Situated on the former site of Anthony Demeter’s seminal restaurant Arbutus on Frith Street, Sussex joins a collection of London restaurants from family trio Richard, Oliver and Gregory Gladwin, which currently includes The Shed in Notting Hill, Rabbit in Chelsea, and Nutbourne in Battersea. Sussex is a celebration of the countryside, and like their other projects it uses ingredients sourced directly from the family farm and vineyard. Unlike the other restaurants, however, Sussex moves away from the sharing dish concept. The menu features dishes like pork tenderloin with malted pig’s cheek, rainbow chard and hazelnut miso; roasted brill with devon crab ravioli; and aubergine and whey cheese roulade served with tomato harissa and basil dust. The wine list, meanwhile, features the Gladwin family’s award-winning range of Sussex wines from their Nutbourne vineyard in Sussex, alongside a handpicked wine range from producers around the world and a selection of homegrown cocktails.
Located on the second floor of the recently renovated venue, the new restaurant at Annabel’s pays homage to the club’s original style. Another Martin Brudnizki project, the centrepiece of Matteo’s is the golden Buddha that sat in the middle of the previous club, with original artwork lining the walls and nostalgic furnishings throughout. On the menu you’ll find a selection of the finest Italian dishes, including Venetian style mixed fried seafood, tortelli pasta with wild mushrooms and truffle, and a whole rack of lamb, alongside an extensive wine list and the largest collection of Dom Pérignon champagne seen in any restaurant globally.
Cult chicken and waffle spot Sweet Chick has made its way from Manhattan to London, taking over the Carluccio’s site on Market Place just off Oxford Street. Think American comfort food done well: alongside their staple dish they’ll be serving ‘shrimp and grits’ (scallions with poached egg and cheddar grits), chicken wings, mac and cheese, maple glazed bacon and the like. Wellness fever may be sweeping the nation – but there’s still a place for downright indulgence.
Housed inside a cylindrical, three-storey stone and glass pavilion bang in the middle of Chelsea’s Duke of York Square, you can’t miss Vardo – and you shouldn’t. It’s the first foray into West London for the ever-popular Caravan collection, and you can expect the same cool, easy-going take on all-day dining seen across their other branches – though with a new Chelsea edge to it. Vardo is based around a ‘no boundaries’ concept, inspired by the vardo wagons used by Romani travellers during the 19th century, which would travel the globe collecting produce and flavours along the way. The all-day menu features a strong brunch offering (think everything from smoothie bowls to French toast) alongside a mixture of irresistible platters, mezze boards, small plates, pizzas and grain bowls. Vegetarians are well catered for here – we’d particularly recommend the labneh with spiced chickpeas and flat bread; the charred aubergine with saffron buttermilk dressing; and the sweetcorn with salted pandan coconut milk. Saying that, the za’atar baked cod is delicious, as are the tandoori spiced chicken wings. The Silk Road-inspired eclectic cocktail list is also worth exploring: our top picks are the ‘Carnaval King’: Pisco, Havana rum, watermelon and cardamom oleo, lime, agave and Chartreuse, as well as the tequila-based ‘Medina Highball’. All this is to be enjoyed amid the friendly, relaxed surroundings Caravan is known for, made all the better with floor-to-ceiling windows offering a front seat view of the King’s Road action.
Ben Tish heads up Norma, the first independent restaurant project from the team behind The Stafford London. Located on Fitzrovia’s Charlotte Street, Norma is inspired by the food and grand cafe culture of Sicily, drawing particularly on the island’s Moorish influences. It’s a celebration of old-school Italian hospitality, with a menu offering all your usual suspects (antipasti, homemade pastas, meat dishes) alongside a dedicated crudo bar serving up an array of seasonal raw seafood. For drinks, there’s a list of Marsala wines originating from a small coastal town on the west of the island, as well as a selection of cocktails named after key moments in Sicily’s turbulent history – think limoncello, vermouth, cherries and figs.
Heading up new Chelsea gourmet traiteur and delicatessan Colette is Chris Hill, who hails from The Ritz where he worked under Executive Chef John Williams. A partnership with Belgian restaurant group La Villa Lorraine, Colette is the place to stop by before having a dinner party: the Fulham Road spot will offer a selection of elegant, take-home dishes from beef wellington to butternut risotto, alongside an array of fine wines, artisan cheeses and charcuterie. Opening 20 January 2020
Chef Daniel Humm of the iconic New York restaurant Eleven Madison Park, is bringing his culinary finesse to London with a new restaurant, set to open next month at Claridge’s. After much anticipation the menu has now been revealed, with standout mains including black cod roasted with cabbage, miso and kohlrabi; honey and lavender glazed dry-aged duck; and roasted poussin stuffed with parmesan, lemon and fennel. There’s also a tasting menu offered at £125pp, featuring Oscietra caviar with smoked shellfish, and poached lobster with Delica squash. Named after the hotel’s Mayfair location at the intersection of Davies Street and Brook Street, the new project replaces Simon Rogan’s Michelin-starred restaurant Fera at Claridge’s, which closed at the end of last year. Opening December 2019.
In early 2020, iconic restaurant The Connaught Grill will re-open on Mount Street after a 20 year hiatus. Located on the ground floor of Mayfair hotel The Connaught, The Grill will be overseen by Jean-Georges Vongerichten, who will continue to run his eponymous restaurant there. The menu will focus on British produce, with dishes including langoustines, Dover sole, British game and seasonal vegetables, alongside classics from the old Connaught Grill. Opening early 2020.
This December, Britain’s youngest ever two Michelin star chef Tom Aikens is opening a new restaurant in Belgravia. Muse will have space for just five tables, seating a total of 26 diners, with a choice of two tasting menus available featuring a selection of dishes inspired by experiences and events in his life to make up what’s described as a ‘gastronomic autobiography.’ Opening January 2020.
This autumn, Angela Hartnett is opening a new Cafe Murano venue, this one in the heart of Bermondsey. This follows two other Cafe Murano venues across London – one in St James, the other in Covent Garden – alongside the original Michelin-starred Murano in Mayfair. Adam Jay will be heading up the kitchen, with a menu featuring many of the signature dishes found at the group’s other locations. More details coming soon…