Just in time for festive season fun, here is The Resident’s guide to new bars, restaurants and pubs in London, this December…
1 LE PETIT BEEF BAR, Chelsea
A Monte-Carlo born concept with locations already in far-flung places including Greece, Malta, France and Hong Kong, this lavish, meaty steakhouse comes to London this month. Dine in glamourous interiors and on prime meat cuts sourced globally and prepared for a menu that plucks the finest recipes from around the world. Diners will be able to choose from a selection of fond favourites including Wagyu ribeye and a double cheeseburger.
Open: Tuesday to Saturday 6pm-10.30pm
Address: 7 Cale Street SW3 3QP
2 The Avocado Show, Mayfair
Que millennial-unable-to-buy-property-quip, The Avocado Show has opened a venue on Princes Street – the first UK outpost for the hugely successful Dutch brand. Riding on gimmicky coattails, this gaff serves ‘pretty healthy food’ with the primary ingredient being, well, avocados. Testing the theory you can’t have too much of a good thing there’s avo fries, nachos with guacamole, avo halves filled with hummus, eggs a variety of ways with avo, avo salad and avo poke bowls, burgers with avo and sandwiched between avocados, as well as sweet or savoury pancake stacks, also with avo. If you need a non-avo side to go with your mountain of avo, there’s sweety fries and cauli flowers which are served with truffle mayo rather than truffle avo mayo.
Open: Monday to Friday 10am-6pm; Friday to Sunday 10am-8pm
Address: 6 Princes Street, W1B 2LG
3 The Pig’s Head, Clapham Old Town
With on-site composting and butchery that uses the whole animal, and a menu that is 50 per cent plant-based, The Pig’s Head in Clapham’s Old Town is perhaps greener than many other neighbourhood haunts. The couple behind the farm to fork pub and kitchen are the team behind the Pig & Butcher in Islington, Princess of Shoreditch and the Smokehouse restaurants. Dishes are modern riffs on classic British fare – steak pie, smoked bone marrow and turnip dip with sour crackers; crispy pig’s head, pickled radish and creamed leeks and sharing boards of scotch eggs, crispy chicken skin, and sweet potato butties. For the non-meat eaters, try the baked bean terrine, coal-roasted squash, celeriac schnitzel with seaweed and a braised turnip gratin.
Open: Opening hours change daily; kitchen open for lunch and dinner service Monday to Saturday, and open 12pm-9pm on Sunday
Address: 87 Rectory Grove, Clapham Old Town, SW4 ODR
4 Wood & Water, Brixton
Brixton’s Three Little Birds has evolved into Wood & Water, a contemporary restaurant and cocktail bar with a Jamaican twist in a tip of the cap to the owner’s heritage. Run by former Miss Jamaica April Jackson and her partner Lee Tan, Wood & Water’s menu fuses modern British cuisine with Jamaican flavours. Menu highlights include pan seared duck breast with a jerk glaze, roasted sweet potato puree, wilted greens and rum soaked plums; potato croquettes, goat curry, plantain ketchup; and roasted cauliflower with beetroot hummus, pomegranate and tamarind sauce. Open for late night drinks and weekend bottomless brunches as well.
Open: Wednesday to Friday 5pm-11pm; Saturday 11am-1am; Sunday 11am-10pm
Address: 412 Coldharbour Lane, SW9 8LF
5 The George, Fitzrovia
This three-storey, 18th century Grade II listed pub has undergone a major restoration by the team who relaunched The Cadogan Arms in Chelsea earlier this year and has now reopened. The first phase of the reopening is the quintessential British pub on the ground floor. Cask ales, craft beers, seasonal cocktails and tapped wines are stocked behind the bar and there’s a solid whiskey collection too. The pub’s food, overseen by James Knappett of two Michelin starred-Kitchen Table is the best of British culinary traditions – ploughman’s; pheasant and pistachio terrine; as well as scampi with chips, mushy peas and comfort desserts like rhubarb crumble with custard. The second phase of the opening unveils Upstairs at The George and will take place in February 2022.
Open: Tuesday to Wednesday 12pm-11pm; Thursday 12pm-11.30pm; Friday and Saturday 12pm-12am
Address: 55 Great Portland Street, W1W 7LQ
6 Carmel, Queen’s Park
The team behind Berber & Q and Shawarma Bar have opened Carmel, a relaxed all-day restaurant and bar in north-west London. The menu takes inspiration from eastern Mediterranean and North African cuisine, offering up a refined yet accessible selection of dishes, many of which are designed to be shared and cooked in a clay oven or over fire. Standout dishes include blackened aubergine with tehina and smacked cucumber; grilled harissa-marinated prawns with courgette tzatziki and a grilled cheese sandwich with rose harissa and quince. Wine is also integral to Carmel, and the wine list offers around 60 different drops from low-intervention producers.
Open: Tuesday to Saturday 12pm-11pm; Sunday 12pm-10pm
Address: Lonsdale Road Queen’s Park, NW6 6RR
7 Madhu’s Brasserie at Harvey Nichols, Knightsbridge
Ideal for a causal lunch while shopping or for a business dinner Madhu’s Brasserie – Harvey Nichols’ newest foodie venture – strikes the perfect balance between fine-dining and a casual dinner. It’s also the newest venture in collaboration with the Madhu’s empire, a family-run Indian restaurant group and royal caterers that have been going strong for more than 40 years. Watch your food cook in front of you and let the friendly staff guide you through the options, which include Madhu’s signature recipes as well as contemporary dishes created with Punjabi and Kenyan twists.
Open: Monday to Sunday 12pm-11pm
Address: 5th floor, 109-125 Knightsbridge, SW1X 7RJ
8 Manteca, Shoreditch
Following a series of successful residences, Manteca has found a permanent residence in Shoreditch. Focussing on nose to tail cooking, hand-rolled pastas and fire-cooked cuts to share, dishes are inspired by travels through Italy and offer the chance to try uncommon meat cuts. Dine on house salumi plates, pig head fritti, clam flat bread, pig skin ragu, stuffed pig snout or chicken offal frittata. From the considered list of pastas, choose from the likes of duck ragu and seaweed tagliatelle, tonnarelli and brown crab cacio e pepe. Guests are invited to watch much of the preparation process as well; the butchery and salumi is done in-house and there is an in-restaurant glass-panelled hanging room. You can also perch on a stool at the meat-slicing counter and during the day, chefs prepare sheets of pasta at a wooden past bench.
Open: Monday to Saturday 12pm-3pm; 5.30pm-11pm
Address: 49-51 Curtain Road, EC2A 3PT
9 El Norte, Mayfair
The team behind Kensington’s swish Latin American restaurant Zuaya and Italian restaurant Como Garden now try their hand at Spanish cuisine at El Norte. The latest restaurant by Madrid-born brothers Arian and Alberto Zandi offers up modern dishes from various Spanish regions in a menu that is designed to be shared. Menu highlights include tortilla with black truffle and poached red onion, baby artichokes with Iberico ham, oxtail meatballs, Galician steak and wild sea bass with sweet tomato and piquillo pepper sauce. In addition to the solid cocktail list, there’s a Sangria menu too which features traditional Sangria as well as fresh variations such as the lavender Sangria.
Open: Sunday to Thursday 12pm-12.30am; Friday to Saturday 12pm-1.30pm
Address: 11-13 Dover Street, Mayfair, W1S 4LH
10 Pizza Pilgrims at Selfridges
To get into this restaurant, enter through a three-metre hydroponic basil tunnel, created in partnership with Harvest London, a vertical farming company. This restaurant is trying hard to be green – dough is made from regenerative UK wheat and other locally-sourced ingredients include fior di latte mozzarella which is made in the UK using the traditional Italian process. Upholstery used in the interiors is a vegan leather alternative made from pineapples, tabletops and tabletops are made from reclaimed plastic waste. While all your slow-proofed Pizza Pilgrims faves feature on the menu, more than 40 per cent of the menu is made up of dishes exclusive to Selfridges. Opens December 9.
Open: Daily 11am-10pm
Address: 4th Floor, Selfridges, 400 Oxford Street, W1C 1JS
11 miscusi, Covent Garden
Cult Italian pasta joint, miscusi opens its first London restaurant this December. Originally launched in Milan, the chain has gained a reputation for serving up simple yet tasty bowls of pasta and now has 13 restaurants in seven Italian cities – and there are more in the pipeline for London. Friendly and relaxed, it plates up hefty, affordable pasta dishes made from fresh and seasonal ingredients that arrive to your table pronto. You can mix and match your pastas (including wheat, lentils, chickpeas or gluten-free) with the many sauces (including pomodoro, carbonara or pesto), or choose off the menu. There’s Rigatoni Tonno e Pistacch (chickpea pasta with tuna and pistachio cream), signature dish Pacchero Tricolore (green pistachio, white burrata and red tomato sauce), and Cacio Pepe Funghi with mushrooms in a creamy cheese and pepper sauce. For those who want to bring a bit of miscusi home with them, pasta and sauces are available to buy downstairs.
Open: Monday to Thursday 12pm-10.30pm; Friday and Saturday 12pm-11pm; Sunday 12pm-10pm
Address: 23 Slingsby Place, WC2E 9AB
12 Booking Office 1869 at St Pancras Station, King’s Cross
Booking Office 1869 is a reimagining of the original 19th century St. Pancras ticket hall, by hotelier Harry Handelsman (ex- St. Pancras Renaissance Hotel, The Stratford, Chiltern Firehouse). The old-school glamour drenched interiors have been styled to look like a Victorian-style winter garden featuring eccentric patterns, fabrics and finishes. The all-day a la carte menu features dishes such as steak tartare, baked gnocchi and slow roasted lamb shoulder cooked in chermoula. In addition to this, there’s a Raw Bar as well serving oysters and sashimi-style tuna skewers. You can also pop in for drinks only, and the cocktail list includes the classics and a signature drinks which incorporate Victorian materials such as the Ol’ Signalman with pecan nut infused bourbon, cocchi rosa and coconut bitters.
Open: Tuesday to Saturday, 4pm-late
Address: St Pancras Station, Euston Road, NW1 2AR