After making waves with Clapham’s The Dairy and Sorella restaurants, chef Robin Gill is heading down the road to open at the Embassy Gardens development next door to the relocated US Embassy in Nine Elms. Darby’s is described as an oyster bar, bakery and grill that will have an Irish twist. The all-day menu includes a ‘Darby’s full Irish’ breakfast; and evening dishes of cod on the bone; Dexter Beef with Worcester and mustard; and Oxford Sandy and Black pig with caramelised apple glaze. Joining Gill at the restaurant will be head chef Dean Parker, who helped opened both The Dairy and Sorella, while former Stem manager Emma Underwood will lead the front of house.
3 Viaduct Gardens Road, Embassy Gardens, London, SW11 7AY
Inspired by the ancient Camino de Santiago pilgrimage to Galicia, Pilgrim is the first permanent opening from Jamie Duffield, Dave Bone and Anthony Power following the trio’s appearance on BBC Two’s My Million Pound Menu earlier this year. The 40-cover restaurant will be the centrepiece of Liverpool’s new Duke Street Market food hall, with the menu described as being ‘radically seasonal’ and inspired by the food found on the Camino route. Dishes will include wood-roasted pork chop and fennel emulsion; scallops with smoked butter; and barbecued octopus tentacle with guindilla pepper salsa, with a four-course tasting menu available.
46 Duke St, Liverpool, L1 5AS
Jason Atherton’s Little Social restaurant will relaunch as No.5 Social early this month. The 60-cover Mayfair site is being overseen by executive chef Kostas Papathanasiou, who previously worked as senior sous chef at Atherton’s nearby Pollen Street Social. He will be joined by restaurant manager Nils Cassignol. The regularly changing menu will draw from Papathanasiou’s experience, which also includes stints at The Ledbury and The Fat Duck. Dishes will include English heritage tomato salad with goat’s curd, almonds and fennel; and poached Hebridean halibut, celeriac truffle emulsion and purée with pickled mushrooms and a black truffle beurre blanc. Little Social was launched six years ago. The rebrand follows the departure of Little Social’s longstanding Canadian head chef Cary Docherty.
5 Pollen Street, Mayfair, W1S 1NE
It’s just over six months since Harts Group opened Barrafina at the Coal Drop’s Yard development in King’s Cross, now its last restaurant at the scheme is finally about to launch. Parrillan will occupy the outside space next to Barrafina with a 100-cover terrace bar, that will see diners cook meat, fish and seafood over grills at their table. Unlike the tapas bar, Parrillan is set to accept reservations as well as walk-ins and is billed as a more relaxed alternative to its sister site.
Coal Drops Yard, Stable Street, London N1C 4AB
Having operated out of a food truck in Shoreditch’s Truman Brewery since 2012, street food chicken brand Orange Buffalo is finally opening its first bricks and mortar site. The brain child of Mike So and Nick White, who came up with the concept following a road trip around the US, Orange Buffalo specialises in serving what it claims to be ‘the hottest wings in town’. With an expanded menu and a selection of scoville-pushing house-made sauces, So and White will be hoping to build on the success that led Orange Buffalo to be named Best Loved Restaurant in the 2016 Time Out Love London Awards.
46 Mitcham Rd, Tooting, SW17 9NA
Chelsea Barracks Kitchen by Ollie Dabbous
Ollie Dabbous’ restaurant at Chelsea Barracks might only be fleeting - it runs from 21-25 May to tie in with the Chelsea Flower Show - but it’s a sign of things to come, with Chelsea Barracks Kitchen at some point destined to become a permanent restaurant. Located a short walk from the show, it will feature a fine dining element and a walk-in brasserie menu serving baked goods from his Mayfair restaurant Hide, alongside savoury dishes such as courgette, mint and Graceburn fritters; wild fennel labneh; and croque monsieur.
Chelsea Barracks Kitchen, 1 Garrison Square, London, SW1W 8BG
With an impressive CV that includes time at Pied a Terre, The Square and launching Gordon Ramsay’s London House in 2013, Anna Haugh is certainly one to watch. The Dublin-born chef has chosen a site just off the King’s Road in London’s well-heeled Chelsea for her first solo restaurant, which will offer modern European food with an Irish influence when it opens on 9 May. Dishes on the sample menu include Clonakilty black pudding rolls with Wendy’s apple chutney; saddle of lamb, pressed hotpot and carrot puree; and beef with boxty cake, hispi cabbage and parsnip puree. The restaurant’s name is also a nod to Myrtle Allen, the first female chef to win a Michelin star in Ireland who Haugh credits as one of the most inspiring chefs of her generation.
1A Langston Street, Chelsea, SQ10 0JL
Bob Bob Cité
The long delayed followed up to swanky Soho brasserie Bob Bob Ricard will finally open its doors this month - on 10 May. Five years in the making, Bob Bob Cité is described as ‘a brasserie for the 21st century’ with a French menu overseen by Eric Chavot. Dishes will include classics such as French onion soup, escargots, veal blanquette and daube de boeuf Provencal, with BBR’s iconic ‘presser pour champagne' buttons once again in situ. With a fitout cost in the region of £25m and twelve-and-a-half kilometres of mirror-polish steel trim, weighing over five-and-a-half tons, it’s a restaurant that isn’t going to be doing things by halves.
Level 3, 122 Leadenhall St, London
Restaurant and fishmonger group FishWorks has had its share of struggles in the past. Having been brought out of administration by current owners Boparan Restaurant Group in 2009, the once 10-site strong now operates only two locations. This month, however, will see the launch of a new flagship location in Covent Garden. The 110-cover restaurant is part of a wider company rebrand, and will house the group’s first oyster bar. The menu is set to include a tasting platter for two of crispy squid, monkfish, halibut, grilled seabass, scallops and mussels, clams and fresh oysters, with a free-flowing prosecco lunch available on Sundays.
2-4 Catherine Street, London, WC2B 5JY
Anthony Demetre is relocating his Wild Honey restaurant from Mayfair to St James’s, replacing The Balcon restaurant at the Sofitel Hotel. Fittingly, The Balcon chef Simon Woodrow will head up the kitchen, having previously worked at Wild Honey in Mayfair. Dishes will be similar to those served in Mayfair, and will include roast saddle of lamb with shoulder cottage pie; and custard tart.
6 Waterloo Pl, St. James's, London
This May will see the launch of a new wine-focused restaurant in Holborn overseen by four experienced hospitality professionals including Rebecca Mascarenhas and chef Graham Long. Gezellig, named from a Dutch word that is apparently best translated as “an atmosphere which allows good times to happen”, is to launch following a pop-up at Carousel London in May 2017. The quartet is completed by sommeliers Wieteke Teppema (Trinity, Viajante) and James Comyn (Pied à Terre). The 50-cover restaurant is to open on the site of the former Holborn Town Hall, and will also contain a bar and a private dining room. The wine list is expected to feature approximately 350 bins, starting from £25 for a bottle and £5 for a glass.
193-197 High Holborn, WC1V 7BD
Monsieur le Duck
Monsieur Le Duck is to open what is hopes will be a permanent home in Clerkenwell on 9 May, following the closure of its Spitalfields pop-up. The 80-cover site will be spread across two floors, with a private bar and function room. Dishes will include as duck confit, duck burgers, and new options such as duck wellington. There’ll also be a French-inspired cocktail list, including Pousse Rapière (orange and armagnac liqueur blended with vin sauvage); house specials like French tonique (gin mixed with Chambord, elderflower, liqueur and tonic).
27 Clerkenwell Road, EC1M 5RN
The popular Gleneagles restaurant relaunches this month with a new design that evokes the fine dining rooms of the 1920s and ‘30s and the golden age of rail travel when socialites would take the train from London to Scotland. Theatrical glamour are The Strathearn’s buzzwords, with the restaurant set to offer a traditional gueridon service with dishes such a steak flambé and Scottish smoked salmon prepared tableside.
The Gleneagles Hotel, Auchterarder, Perthshire