Welcome to our weekly round-up of all that’s happening in London’s food and drink scene.
Inside this week: beer, burgers and the BBC
Brewing in Acton
The George & Dragon pub on Acton’s High Street is to become London’s latest microbrewery. Launching officially next month, what was previously a dining room at the back of this historic pub has been transformed into Dragonfly Brewery that’s currently producing four distinct beers: a bitter, a stout, a Bavarian-style wheat beer and a pale ale. The pub’s food menu has also been revamped with the brews in mind, with dishes matched to each of the beers and often using them as ingredients in the cooking, such as in a stout rarebit or a beer fondue with garlic soldiers.
White City House
Soho House Group has taken on a chunk of the former BBC Television Centre for its latest venture, turning it into a club with 47 bedrooms, a couple of restaurants and a rooftop swimming pool. It will be the fifth London-based ‘house’ for the group, after Shoreditch House, Little House in Mayfair, High Road House in Chiswick and the Soho original. Appropriately enough, it will take its design theme from the history of television. We’re not sure the name White City House has quite the same ring to it as Soho or Shoreditch, though.
Whitechapel is set to go up in the junk food world, with the announcement of plans for a combined Chicken Shop and Dirty Burger restaurant to open on Mile End Road on 21 May. Both restaurants are run by busy Soho House Group, so along with their White City move and an already extensive selection of restaurants including Pizza East and Dean Street Townhouse, we can only assume this is part of a plan for world domination. See our review of Chicken Shop in Tooting here.
Moore sites for smokehouse
David Moore, the restaurateur behind Michelin-starred Pied à Terre in Fitzrovia and L'Autre Pied in Marylebone, opened smokehouse One Sixty in West Hampstead around a month ago and now he’s already looking to roll it out. He’s reportedly eyeing up two more sites, with one likely to be agreed in the next few weeks. We don’t yet know if he’s looking to move the concept somewhere more central or stick to neighbourhood locations.
The Latchmere on Battersea Park Road is set to open under new ownership after an extensive makeover next month. The pub, which houses Theatre 503 above it, has been bought by Renaissance Pubs, who already run six gastropubs in south London, including The Abbeville in Clapham, The Tommyfield in Kennington, and The Rosendale in West Dulwich. The new pub will feature a British-led menu in keeping with the other venues, and also boasts a large beer garden complete with a children’s play zone perfect for the area’s yummy mummies.
Newly opened this week was the third branch of Spanish tapas restaurant Ibérica near Farringdon station, the second branch of Bill Granger’s Granger & Co just down the road on Clerkenwell Green, and former Loft Project chef James Lowe’s long-anticipated first restaurant Lyle’s in Shoreditch's Tea Building.
Today sees the launch of Jason Atherton’s latest restaurant, City Social. It’s the chef’s fifth London opening after Pollen Street Social, Little Social, Social Eating House and Berners Tavern. It’s also Atherton’s first launch outside of the West End, taking a prime spot on level 24 of Tower 42 near Bank. Next Tuesday will also be a big day for London’s high dining scene as the Shangri-La hotel opens in The Shard along with pan-Asian restaurant Ting on level 35. Europe’s soon-to-be highest bar, Gong, will follow at level 52 a little later in the year.
Talk To Us
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