Our Top 6 London Spring Openings for ‘Ordinary People’

Spring has been busy.  Never a lazy season, this year she’s hatched a swathe of new eateries, bars and cafes across the city.  There are many to choose from, but these are the 6 new central London spots we like the most and would recommend to the ‘general proletariat’.

If you are, in fact, a Celebrity, Star, Duke, Duchess or other ‘Person of Note’ you might twitch at the absence of  Nuno Mendes’ Chiltern Firehouse.  We have omitted it from the list as it appears mere mortals unaccompanied by an Angelina or a Miley, are unable to secure bookings. 

We rather like this lot though and feel that the mortals haven’t done too badly.


Well the good news is that the caffeination of the city continues. The first three of our six spots are taken up by new places to imbibe coffee.

Fernandex & Wells

F+W have added  two cafes to their growing empire in very quick succession. There’s an elegant outlet in the fancy-pants “Duke Street Emporium” in Mayfair, and a more edgy one at the musical instruments end of Covent Garden in Denmark Street. Their formula feels very distinctly ‘unformula-like’ and I suspect that’s the secret to their success. If you want a little more detail about the coffee and set up and you haven’t read it yet, you should also check out our post on the five best coffees in London; these guys are in it.

Covent Garden
1-3 Denmark Street, WC2H 8LP

55 Duke Street, W1K 5NR


Soho Grind

Traipsing across the city from the ‘cool kids side’ in Shoreditch are the peeps from Shoreditch Grind. I think they’ve found that it’s just as Grind-y in Soho.  This is a quaint space with extra seating downstairs. I suspect they’ll give Fernandez and Wells a friendly nudge having set themselves up on Beak Street – the home of the original F+W mothership.

19 Beak St,
Soho, London


Easy Eats

Granger & Co

It’s inspiring to see restaurants that have taken that initial leap into the potential financial chasm of the restaurant world, do so well.  It’s extra inspiring to see them start to flex a little.  Granger and Co is another case in point, having secured a permanent queue on Westbourne Grove, they’ve now leapt across to Clerkenwell to replicate the experience. For a more detailed review you should skim the post here.

50 Sekforde Street,

Granger & Co on Urbanspoon


Ok it’s a bit ‘boysy’ in fitout. You do rather feel like you should haul a squirming beast over your shoulder or perhaps lasso a lassie from across Charlotte Street, but the food at this ‘child of Dabbous’ is a whole lot less crass than that. And desserts are almost ‘girlie’. Realigning the gender imbalance perhaps?

18 Charlotte Street
Barnyard on Urbanspoon

A bit Fancy-Pants

City Social

Can Jason Atherton do no wrong? Those of you who’ve been on the Soho Food walk of London will know that he’s one of my big five Soho foodie identities because he’s had such an impact on the transformation of the foodie scene in a relatively short time.  Stretching out (and up!) a little now, he’s taken over the former Gary Rhodes site at Tower 42 in the city.  It has a gloriously glamorous feel with it’s sweeping curves and 1920s vibe.

Tower 42,
Old Broad Street,
London, EC2N 1HQ

City Social on Urbanspoon

About Michelle Francis

Michelle is an ex-restauranteur and chef, a chatterer and a food lover. She currently runs London food walking tours in the neighbourhoods of Soho and Marylebone. Antipodean by birth, Londoner by love.

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