Restaurant radar: October 2020

By BigHospitality

- Last updated on GMT

Restaurant radar October 2020 Santiago Lastra's Kol Akoko D&D London Klosterhaus Bristol Robin Wylde by Harriet Mansell

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October sees two long-awaited openings - West African restaurant Akoko and Santiago Lastra's Kol - hit the capital; D&D take on Bristol; and the launch of Harriet Mansell's debut restaurant.

Former Noma Mexico chef Santiago Lastra is to finally open his long-awaited debut restaurant Kol later this month on Seymour Street in London's Marylebone. The restaurant, which takes its name from the Spanish word for cabbage (col), will draw on Lastra’s Mexican roots and background sourcing ingredients for Rene Redzepi’s Noma Mexico restaurant - Lastra having been headhunted by Redzepi to act as project manager during its six-week run during 2017. Split across two levels, the restaurant's design - overseen by A-NRD studio - will 'reflect the vibrant colour palate of the rural Mexican landscapes, villages and homes where Santiago has spent time honing his craft, with notes of Nordic minimalism'. The 56-cover first floor dining room will offer two set menus that will change seasonally, with the choice of either five or six courses priced at £55 and £70 per person respectively. Dishes set to feature include langoustine tacos with sea buckthorn; lamb leg tostada cured in gooseberries with walnut oil and fermented chillis; kolrabi ceviche; and tamal served with corn-husk ice cream.
9 Seymour St, Marylebone, London W1H 6BE

'Progressive and elevated' West African restaurant Akoko will finally open its doors in London's Fitzrovia early this month. Founded by British Nigerian Aji Akokomi, who has taken inspiration from family recipes and his travels across West Africa, the restaurant 'will pay homage to the country's culinary heritage by using recipes passed down through generations and traditional cooking techniques of smoking, curing and fermenting to maximise the flavours and textures of the ingredients'. Originally slated to open in October last year, Akoko will be headed up by former MasterChef: The Professionals finalist William JM Chilila, who previously spent nearly 10 years rising through the ranks at Orrery in Marylebone. The five-course tasting menu will feature dishes of smoked goat served with jollof rice; pounded yam with native lobster egusi; grilled aged beef suya with caramelised onion and confit tomato; and a dessert of goat milk ice cream with uda burnt cream and caramelised Ghanaian cocoa butter. The wine offering, meanwhile, has been overseen by former Noma Mexico and Nuala London sommelier Honey Spencer and her business partner Ania Smelskaya, previously of Silo.
21 Berners St, London W1T 3LP


D&D London’s Bristol restaurant opens later this month and will pay homage to grand mittel-European cafes. Klosterhaus is the upmarket restaurant group’s first location in the South West and will be located in the 18th century Grade I-listed Quakers Friars building a short walk from Cabot Circus. The restaurant will be spread over two floors connected by a central staircase and an island bar which will be the centrepiece of the ground floor. The menu, developed by executive head chef Bjoern Wassmuth (from D&D London’s German Gymnasium in King’s Cross) and head chef Rhys Grayson is described as ‘broad-ranging’ with some Mittel-European classics and German favourites inspired by Wassmuth’s German heritage.
The Friary Bldg, Quakers Friars, Broadmead, Bristol BS1 3DF


Wild food restaurant Native opens in its new location on Osea Island this month. Owners Ivan Tisdall-Downes and Imogen Davis have upped sticks from London to open a new venue in a converted World War I torpedo store in the wilds of Essex. Native will serve hyper local food with ingredients sourced from the island with guests able to access it via boat or by car, depending on the tide.
Osea Island, Maldon, Essex CM9 8UH


Heddon Yokocho
‘Downtown retro-style’ 1970s Tokyo ramen bar Heddon Yokocho is opening on London’s Heddon street in Mayfair. Being launched by the tea behind London’s Japan Centre, the fast-casual restaurant will have a ramen focus with a menu that features regional variations of the dish, including those eaten in northern islands of Hokkaido and the southern tropical archipelagos of Kyushu.
8 Heddon Street, London W1B 4BU

steve joyce
Image: Steve Joyce

Robin Wylde
West Country-born chef and recent Great British Menu contestant Harriet Mansell is to relaunch her Lyme Regis pop-up Robin Wylde as a permanent restaurant venture this month. Set within a former pottery workshop, the 32-cover restaurant will follow in a similar fashion to its first incarnation, offering a nine-course tasting experience alongside optional pairings of low intervention and West Country wines. As is meant to be inferred by the restaurant's namesake - a pseudonym designed 'to evoke connotations of luscious and wild countryside combined with a sense of adventure and old English charm' - Mansell's culinary style takes inspiration from the natural world. Experimentation with raw ingredients such as pickling, preserving and fermentation will all feature prominently on the menu, which have previously included dishes of celeriac with hazelnut, cured egg yolk and Dorset truffle; baked River Teign oyster with wild garlic and apple; and gooseberry mousse with butterscotch. Drawing on the availability of natural local resources, the new tasting menu will change approximately every six weeks and focus on 'shining a light' on the region’s seafood, sea herbs and seaweeds.
Silver St, Lyme Regis DT7 3HR


The Silver Birch
Opening in Chiswick on the site that was formerly home to cafe chain Brew, The Silver Birch is being launched by founder Tim Price, with the support of Edward Allsopp - previously general manager at Wild by Tart in Belgravia. Kimberley Hernandez, former head chef at Andrew Wong's now closed City restaurant Kym’s, is to head up the kitchen. The restaurant will focus on British dining and serve a contemporary, seasonal menu from breakfast through to dinner. While details on the dishes are yet to be revealed, it's said the menu will be reflective of Hernandez’s Michelin background and years working at some of London’s top restaurants, as well as in the two Michelin starred Matsalen in Sweden.
142 Chiswick High Road, London, W4 1PU

8 Restaurant
Craft Dining Rooms chef Andrew Sheridan will launch his first solo restaurant 8, in Birmingham, on - appropriately - 8 October. The restaurant and menu will be themed around the number eight, with each dish paying homage to the number and Sheridan ‘culinary journey’ with the two time Great British Menu contestant describing the menu and concept as his ‘whole career in eight courses’. With only one sitting available at 8pm, the menu isn’t big on descriptions with each dish having a title followed by two or three ingredients. Dishes include Square Root of 8 (celeriac, pistachio); Eight Days A Week (apple, scallop ); Oxidised (beef, cep, truffle); and 8.01 (mint, chocolate). The interior of 8 will ‘show accents of Sheridan’s life’, and aims to be a theatrical hub taking diners on a journey with every course.
8 Centenary Square Birmingham, England B1 2EA 


Redemption Covent Garden
Redemption’s Covent Garden site re-opens this week with a completely new team following the acquisition of the vegetarian and vegan alcohol-free restaurant brand by the Alex Moore-headed business Atomex. In a twist that may disappoint  teetotallers, Redemption will now serve up the hard stuff (but there will still be a focus on booze-free cocktails, wines and beers). Redemption will be run by managing director Raquel De Oliveira, who is also managing director of Ceviche and Andina which Atomex rescued last year. She has brought in Brazilian chef Erich Riberio to create an all-new menu that includes grilled courgette and carrots tostado, smashed avocado, pumpkin seeds and rocket; and spiralized beetroot with mint, pecans and pomegranate dressing.
2 Neal's Yard, West End, London WC2H 9AT

Pali Hill
Indian restaurant group Azure Hospitality is to make its London debut with the launch of Pali Hill, opening later this month on the former Gaylord site in London's Fitzrovia. Inspired by India’s diverse culinary heritage, the ground floor restaurant will offer an 'eclectic' menu of regional sharing plates. The site will also feature an underground cocktail bar known as Bandra Bhai, which will be accessible through a hidden doorway in the basement of the restaurant, and will serve as a 'playful' tribute to the illicit hangouts of India’s smuggling era. The opening will be overseen by restaurateurs Rahul Khanna and Kabir Suri, who founded Azure Hospitality in New Delhi in 2009 and operate several restaurant brands across India. Former Hibiscus and The River Café chef Avinash Shashidhara will lead the Pali Hill kitchen, serving a menu of seasonally-changing small plates such as girolle and potato stuffed paratha with ghee and lime preserve; and pan-fried lamb sweet breads with black pepper, cumin, crispy curry leaves and mint. There will also be large sharing dishes including grilled venison lal maas marinated with ginger, herbs and sweet spices; and stuffed aubergine, green tomato chutney and hung curd with rice flour.
79-81 Mortimer St, Fitzrovia, London W1W 7SJ


Having originally launched Radio Alice as a joint venture with Azzurri Group back in 2016, brothers Matteo and Salvatore Aloe have now acquired a majority share in the brand and are set to convert its Clapham site into the first UK outpost for their Italian restaurant group Berberè. The first London Berberè pizzeria will 'echo' the look and menu of its Italian siblings, of which there are 12. The interiors will retain the brand’s distinctive look, contrasting the exposed white brick walls with flashes of colours and using the open kitchen as a focal point for the dining area. Berberè's London pizza menu will include classics like margherita; marinara; and the Napoli with anchovies and capers. However, there will also be a range of topping combinations especially developed for the new site. They include the ‘Spicy Diavola’ with spicy salami and ‘nduja; one with baked aubergine, homemade basil and walnut pesto, and smoked ricotta; and a white pizza topped with gorgonzola, speck, radicchio, mozzarella and honey. The menu will also offer a selection of fritti; and a signature dessert of sweet dough balls deep fried and filled with vanilla gelato and peanut butter.
67 Venn St, Clapham Town, London, SW4 0BD


Belfast restaurant SHU will relaunch this month after a £1m refurbishment. The newly expanded restaurant will now feature three separate areas, a main restaurant on the ground floor; a private dining space in the new top floor extension and and basement bar and dining venue. The new-look restaurant is due to open on 9 October.
253 Lisburn Rd, Belfast BT9 7EN

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