London may be in that strange, midsummer quiet period but the restaurant industry is already gearing up for the autumn rush, with some of the most exciting launches since the pre-Covid times lined up over the coming months.
Whether it’s the iconic The Wolseley opening its second venue on King William Street in the City, or Jamie Oliver making a dramatic return to the London food scene, there are lots of reasons for foodies to be excited right now. Here are some of the upcoming restaurants we’ll be booking into ASAP.
Jamie Oliver (November)
Everybody’s favourite celebrity chef is set to restart his London business after all but three of his UK restaurants were forced to close in 2019. The new venture will open in the Theatre Royal on Drury Lane, which is operated by Andrew Lloyd Webber’s LW Theatres and promises to “celebrate everything that’s wonderful about Britain’s rich and diverse food culture with a seasonal menu that champions the best of British produce.”
Oliver says he will source produce from the best British farmers “from the best farmhouse cheesemakers to Creedy Carver who will supply free range chickens and ducks, and Cobble Lane Cured”.
Theatre Royal Drury Lane reopened in 2021 after a £60m restoration. Oliver’s restaurant will occupy a new space adjacent to the main theatre at 6 Catherine Street.
The Park (early 2024)
Jeremy King, former boss of Corbin & King restaurant group that ran iconic destinations including The Wolseley, The Delaunay and Brasserie Zédel, is also making a return to the London restaurant scene. His new venture is The Park, located at 123 Bayswater Rd right beside Hyde Park in the new Park Modern building. King says the restaurant will be “very much within the ‘Grand Cafés & Brasseries’ mould that I love so much but it is very much of the early 21st Century rather than 20th.”
Expect a massive terrace, extravagant interiors and more of that King magic that made The Wolseley et al some of the best restaurants in London.
The Wolseley City (Autumn)
While King is preparing his own restaurants, his former company is busy expanding the brand he made into an icon. The Wolseley City on King William Street promises to be every bit as glam as its Mayfair sibling, with an even bigger footprint and an estimated £10m expenditure. It will be an all-day experience, with breakfast and lunch likely to be especially popular with City types, and the evenings helping to further establish the Square Mile as an enticing food and booze destination in its own right.
Bébé Bob (september)
Speaking of which, one of our favourite City restaurants, Bob Bob Ricard City, is further expanding with a new Bébé Bob concept in Soho. This one is moving away from the Franco-Russian menu and instead focusing on rotisserie chicken (albeit all sourced from France). But don’t worry – you can still consume as much caviar as your wallet can sustain, although there won’t be any “press for Champagne” buttons this time.
Raffles at The OWO (october)
One of the most exciting and talked about openings not only in London but the entire world, Raffles London at the Old War Office (or OWO if you’re in the know) looks set to be a foodie paradise, with 11 restaurants housed in what might well be the most spectacular space in the entire city.
Mauro Colagreco, the chef behind Mirazur, 2019’s best restaurant in the world (according to World’s 50 Best Restaurants) is behind three of the new ventures, described by Raffles as “a brasserie with a twist, a fine dining restaurant, and an avant-garde private Chef’s Table.” Expect world-beating food and gigantic waiting lists. Also coming to the OWO is a rooftop restaurant from renowned Japanese chef Endo Kazutoshi.
Row on 5 (later in 2023)
You can tell it’s a good time for new restaurants when a new Jason Atherton opening barely scrapes a mention. The chef-restaurateur is opening a Savile Row dining room that promises to show off the best of what made Atherton’s “Social” restaurant empire so successful.