Restaurant radar: July 2024

By James McAllister

- Last updated on GMT

July's key restaurant openings including the return of Des Gunewardena, Albert's Schloss London, and new Jason Atherton hotdog concept

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The return of Des Gunewardena, a huge cook haus and beer palace in central London, and a new hotdog concept from Jason Atherton are among this month's key restaurant openings.

Engel & Jang

Des-Gunewardena-unveils-details-of-new-flagship-restaurant-bar-and-event-space-at-The-Royal-Exchange-in-The-City-of-London

Some 18 months after his departure from D&D London, Des Gunewardena is returning to the capital’s restaurant scene with a double opening within The Royal Exchange in The City of London. Set to open on 8 July and occupying the mezzanine level of the historic building, the new venture will encapsulate two hospitality concepts: Engel, and Jang. Engel, which will sit in the north and east mezzanines, will be a cocktail bar and performance space inspired by 1920s Berlin. The bar team, led by Mihai Burca (formerly of Seasons Kitchen), will serve twists on classic and vintage cocktails alongside a daytime menu of Austrian and German café/bar dishes. The adjoining performance space – called Engel Live – will host live cabaret music evenings and be available for private hire. Jang, the restaurant situated on the south mezzanine, will serve modern interpretations of Korean and Japanese cuisine. The kitchen will be led by Dana Choi, whose experience includes working with Korean chef Judy Joo at Jinjuu in Mayfair and, most recently, as executive chef at Seoul Bird. Dishes on the menu will include yuk hwe, a take on steak tartare with egg yolk, ssam mu pickled radish, caviar, and pear sorbet.
Royal Exchange, London EC3V 3LL
engelbar.co.uk // jangrestaurant.co.uk

Hot Dogs by Three Darlings

Jason Atherton will open a gourmet hot dog restaurant within Harrods’s Dining Hall later this month. Opening on 15 July and taking over a section of the counter operated as Sushi by MASA, Hot Dogs by Three Darlings will be a 25-seat restaurant serving a range of five gourmet hot dogs (main picture), inspired by flavours from around the world, alongside a selection of fries, sundaes, milkshakes, Martinis, champagne, wine and beer. There will also be a rotating celebrity endorsed hot dog available, with proceeds donated to charity.
Harrods Dining Hall, 135 Brompton Rd, London SW1X 7XL

Kolamba East

Kolamba-duo-to-open-second-restaurant-in-Spitalfields
Credit: Tonic Studio

Restaurateurs Eroshan and Aushi Meewella are opening their second London restaurant this month on Spitalfields’ Blossom Street. Kolamba East follows the success of their first Sri Lankan restaurant Kolamba, which opened in Soho in 2019, and will once again showcase the duo’s modern take on home-cooking and celebration of the island's vibrant cuisine. The menu at Kolamba East will revive dishes from the pair’s childhoods spent in the city, highlighting the culinary diversity of Colombo’s heritage. Adapted by Eroshan from dishes handed down by family and friends, the recipes celebrate the communities of Sinhalese, Tamil, Moor, Burger (Dutch) and Malay descent that call Sri Lanka’s capital their home. The new 92-cover restaurant will be located in the Norton Folgate development and will have a dedicated central bar that will serve cocktails made using Sri Lankan spirits and ingredients that complement the food menu, as well as two private dining rooms. The interior design of the space will pay homage to the work of the celebrated Sri Lankan architect Geoffrey Bawa and the Tropical Modernism movement he pioneered.
12 Blossom Street, Norton Folgate, London E1 6PL
kolamba.co.uk

Holy Carrot

Following a successful pop-up, plant-based restaurant Holy Carrot is set to open its first permanent restaurant space this month on Portobello Road in London’s Notting Hill. Led by founder Irina Linovich, it will focus on ‘vegetable-forward dining’ and have a dedicated commitment to low waste and sustainability. Acme Fire Cult co-founder Daniel Watkins is overseeing the kitchen as executive chef, serving a menu that will showcase ‘bold, flavour-driven dishes’ built around the use of fire and fermentation'. The 'root to peel' menu will include Holy Carrot signatures such as ‘sexy tofu’; and crispy oyster mushrooms. To complement the food menu, Holy Carrot will offer an ever-evolving selection of natural and biodynamic wines and low-waste cocktails created by the team at A Bar With Shapes For A Name in east London. The restaurant’s dining room will hold 60 covers, with the interiors overseen by architect/design firm Al-Jawad Pike.
156 Portobello Road, Notting Hill, London W11 2EB
www.holycarrot.co.uk

Albert’s Schloss London

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Some 18 months on from it being announced, hospitality group Mission Mars will finally open its first Albert’s Schloss venue in London this month, taking over the former Rainforest Café site on Shaftesbury Avenue. The launch of the 18,000sq ft site follows an £8m investment and will be the brand’s biggest venue to date, with space for 500 covers. As with other Albert’s Schloss sites, the London outpost will serve an Alpine-inspired menu, and feature four bars measuring over 45 metres in length alongside a stage for live bands, cabaret and gospel choirs. It will host live entertainment every day of the week. On the lower ground floor will be Ludwig’s Tavern, an Alpine-inspired chalet designed to be a tribute to ‘Mad King Ludwig’ of Bavaria, which will have ‘whimsical design elements as well as roaring fires, shuffleboard and other tavern games’.
20-24 Shaftesbury Ave, London W1D 7EU
albertsschloss.com/london

Dalston Yard

The founder of Street Feast’s original site in London’s Dalston is to relaunch the space as a multifaceted ‘cultural playground’ this month combining food, drinks, art, music, and wellbeing events. Called Dalston Yard, the 27,000sq ft venue will feature 10 kitchens in total, some operating as permanent restaurants and others hosting a roster of residences featuring well-known London chefs including, at launch, Gizzi Erskine and Budgie Montoya. Former St Leonards chef and Acme Fire Cult co-founder Andrew Clarke will helm one of the permanent spaces, an international chophouse called The Butcher of Dalston, which will see classic British and French dishes infused with Indian, Turkish and Caribbean flavours. Other concepts set to feature include Little Gai, a dive bar serving a broad menu that includes Japanese izakaya-inspired dishes by Acme Fire Cult; vegan patties by Jamaican-born artist and chef Denai Moore; ice creams from Chin Chin Labs; and crafted cocktails by Rich Woods. There will also be an all-day bakehouse called Roseau that will convert into an evening wine bar each night serving a range of seasonally-inspired flatbreads; and Brothers & Sisters, an African diasporic diner reimagining the classic diner menu through the lens of chefs from East and West Africa, and across the Caribbean. Alongside this will be The Window Club, a cultural studio and event space set across 2,500sq ft; and Amphi, a commercial art gallery and dining space. There are plans to open a coworking library and lounge onsite in the autumn.
Hartwell St, London E8 3DU
dalstonyard.com

Dhakaah

James Moyle
Credit: James Moyle

Bangladeshi restaurant Dhakaah comes to Camden Market’s Hawley Wharf this month. Launching on 24 July, the restaurant takes its name from the country’s capital Dhaka and will serve a menu of Bangladeshi street food and specialities. The menu will be divided into bar snacks, small plates and bigger plates with snacks to include fuchka, Bangladesh’s answer to pani puri filled with spiced potato, chickpea and spiced tamarind water; peyaju, (crisp dhal fritters); and shingara – shortcrust pastry filled with soft potato and spiced vegetables. Bigger plates will include a beef kathi roll, a heavily spiced mezbani beef curry, wrapped in handmade parota; and the chicken roast - free range chicken leg, caramelised with onion, mixed nuts and cardamon forward masala spices. Assorted kulfi will be served for dessert. The restaurant will use British produce where possible, by some ingredients will be sourced directly from Bangladesh, including kalijeera rice, a small Bangladeshi variety with a distinct nutty aroma and delicate texture.
2nd Floor, Hawley Wharf Market, 3 Camden Lock PLC, London NW1 8AA
www.dhakaah.com

Elements

Chef Gary Townsend will open his first solo venture this month in the Glasgow suburb of Bearsden. Called Elements, the 40-cover fine dining restaurant will serve an ‘evolving’ tasting menu and à la carte option for evening service, with the addition of a smaller four-course menu at lunch. Dishes will use ingredients from Scottish producers and farmers including game from Millbank Farm in Lockerbie; and fresh shellfish and seafood from The Fish People in Glasgow. The opening of Elements follows a £400,000 investment that saw the site undergo a major refurbishment before opening, with the addition of an accessible toilet and better utilisation of current floorspace for improved access.
19 New Kirk Rd, Bearsden, Glasgow G61 3SJ
elementsgla.com

Ardor

Meor Design
Credit: Meor Design

Former Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons head chef Dorian Janmaat will open his debut solo restaurant in Cornwall this month. Called Ardor, the restaurant is inspired by the food cultures of the Iberian peninsula and Mediterranean and will open in the heart of St Ives on 8 July. Originating from the words ‘heat’ and ‘passion’ in Latin, Ardor is described as a casual dining restaurant that will pay homage to Janmaat’s love of the Mediterranean coast and Cornwall, where he spent much of his upbringing. Open for lunch and dinner, it will serve a small plates menu featuring flavours from both Cornwall and Andalusia. Many of the dishes will be nostalgic for Janmaat, bringing back memories of summer lunches with his family on the Spanish coast and will include plates such as fritto misto: Calabrian chilli aioli with burnt lemon; and rotisserie chicken, on show at the face of the kitchen. Located on Fore Street, 60-cover Ardor will have upstairs and lower dining areas, a bar area, and a chef’s counter, with diners given the choice to sit in one of four areas. The upstairs restaurant will have larger tables and a chef’s counter, with views of chefs working at the rotisserie and Josper grill, while the lower restaurant will provide views directly into the kitchen.
45 Fore St, Saint Ives TR26 1HE
ardorstives.co.uk

Cabo

Scotland-based operator Bow Hospitality Group is to open its first restaurant in the country’s capital this month. Taking over the former Superico site on Hanover Street in Edinburgh’s city centre, Cabo will be ‘inspired by the lifestyle and culture’ of the eponymous party peninsula in Mexico with weekly live DJ sets, an extensive cocktail offering, and a live sushi making station. The 70-cover bar and restaurant will serve a menu of Baja Californian fusion dishes that take cues from Japanese and Mexican cuisine. Cabo’s interiors will include accents of cacti, terracotta and stone, and feature ‘abstract illustrations’ of the peninsula’s famous landmarks.
99 Hanover Street, Edinburgh, United Kingdom EH2 1DJ
caborestaurant.co.uk

Lahpet Larder

Burmese-restaurant-Lahpet-to-open-third-site

Lahpet founders Dan Anton and Zaw Mahesh are coming to London’s Bermondsey with Lahpet Larder, which joins the group’s sites in Shoreditch and the West End. Named from the Burmese for ‘tea’ and a nod to the history of Bermondsey, once known as London’s larder for its extensive transport links for the trade and storage of produce, Lahpet Larder will feature a 90-cover dining room, an eight-seater bar, and separate cocktail and snack area, and a 24-seat private dining at the back. The venue will have an open kitchen and have a grocery offer stocking Burmese staples and pickles used across the restaurant’s menu such as pickled tea, pickled ginger, spices, oils and pulses. Head chef Jan Ivanov will be supported by sous chef Tin Aung Khaing in the kitchen with the menu overseen by group head chef Min Maung Maung and Mahesh. The menu will be based around sharing plates and bowls with dishes to include pork with pon yay gyi (fermented horsegram beans); rakhine salmon and papaya salad; and Dawei Mohinga, a regional version of the classic Burmese fish noodle soup. Desserts will include a rice flan with coconut jam; Burmese milk tea ice cream; as well as homemade sorbets. Cocktails will complement the flavours found across the menu including a lime leaf and lemongrass spritz; a tamarind and jaggery sour; and a pickled tea oil martini.
39-45 Bermondsey Street, London SE1 3XF

Circo Brasserie

Cheltenham and Oxford-based restaurant group JM Socials will finally launch its latest restaurant concept later this month. Originally expected to opening at the tail end of last year, Circo Brasserie will be located on Bath Road in Cheltenham and will have a menu focusing on British plates and European classics. Opening from breakfast through to dinner, it will be the 11th restaurant for JM Socials in almost as many years since its inception. The restaurant group was founded by Jay Rahman and Michael Raphel in 2012 when the two restaurateurs decided to bring their love of hospitality, food and the restaurant industry together to open fine dining south Asian restaurant Prithvi in Cheltenham.
226 Bath Road, Cheltenham, GL53 7ND
circobrasserie.co.uk

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