Story of the Day:
Flexible opening hours could give sector £6.75bn a year boost: The hospitality sector could make a further £6.75bn a year by adapting opening hours to fit in with changing work patterns, according to new research. Barclays’ Open All Hours report revealed more than one-fifth (22%) of British workers want food, drink, hotel and gym businesses to change their opening hours. By responding to this demand, restaurants (£2.2bn per annum), takeaways (£2.1bn), and pubs, bars and clubs (£1.2bn) could benefit the most. Demand is being fuelled by almost six in ten (57%) British workers, who now work extended hours – part-time, flexibly or on shifts. Almost one-fifth (19%) of British workers expect 24-hour services across the hospitality and leisure sector. A quarter of workers would now like to go to a museum in the evening (between 6pm and 11pm), more than one in ten (13%) would choose to go to the cinema in the small hours (11pm to 5am), and almost one in five (19%) would choose to get a takeaway after closing time (11pm to 5am). The desire to order a takeaway at unusual hours is even higher among Generation Z (18 to 24-year-old) workers, with (37%) keen for delivery between 11pm and 5am. On average, Generation Z is the age group most frustrated that it cannot access hospitality services when it wants. One-third (33%) said they expect 24-hour services compared with one quarter of millennials (25 to 34-year-olds) and 19% of 35 to 44-year-olds. More than one-third (34%) of Generation Z explained the reason behind their demand for “out of hours” services were long working hours, compared with 30% of millennials and 20% of 45 to 54-year-olds. More than one-quarter (28%) said having the option of an easy-to-use booking platform would lead them to use hospitality services more often. Receiving smartphone notifications based on location also made 14% of customers more likely to choose a service. Mike Saul, head of hospitality and leisure at Barclays, said: “Adapting to changing consumer demand presents a substantial opportunity for businesses. Our research has shown leisure operators could access a staggering £6.75bn per annum by accommodating their customers’ evolving needs, which have been brought on by changing working patterns. While that may be a challenge for some providers, understanding the value of the opportunity makes the prize more tangible.”
Last chance to book this week for Inspirational Leadership In Tough Times Masterclass:
This week is the last chance to book for the Inspirational Leadership In Tough Times Masterclass, being held by Propel and Professor Chris Edger. The event takes place next Thursday (21 June) at Chartered Accountants Hall in Moorgate Place, London. The masterclass will provide insights and tips into how you can perfect being an inspirational leader. Drawing on material from his nine books on leadership, Prof Edger will outline how inspirational leaders mobilise their teams and businesses to outperform the market in challenging circumstances. A host of companies and brands have signed up for the event including Diageo, Revolution Bars Group, Greene King, Frankie and Benny’s, Fuller’s, Mitchells & Butlers, Stonegate Pub Company, TRG Concessions, Jamie Oliver Restaurant Group, Brunning & Price, Brasserie Bar Co, Beds and Bars, ETM Group, Chilango, Pizza Pilgrims, Busaba, Buzzworks, MeatTailer, Ole & Steen, Five Points Brewing Company, Bone Daddies, Gas Street Social, Gracious Development Group, MyLahore, Ideal Collection, George & Dragon, True North Brew, Manorview Hotel Group, Mason & Company, The Old Rectory House Hotel, Sam’s Riverside, Freeths
and HIT Training
. For the full schedule, click here
. Tickets are £295 plus VAT for operators and £445 plus VAT for suppliers, while tickets for Propel Premium subscribers are £245 plus VAT. To book, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01444 817691
‘Netflix generation’ driving meat-free agenda: The “Netflix generation” is driving the meat-free agenda, according to a panel of top chefs. Tredwells chef patron Chantelle Nicholson, Colette’s At The Grove head chef Russell Bateman, BaxterStorey executive chef Hayden Groves, Restaurant Associates culinary director David Simms, Roux At Parliament Square head chef Steve Groves, and Aster chef patron Helena Puolakka met to discuss the shift towards plant-based dining to mark the current World Meat-Free Week. Bateman said: “There’s so much info out there now – entire feature-length documentaries about intensive farming, rising population and how unsustainable our current level of meat consumption is. Don’t underestimate the power of Netflix. It’s having a real effect. I see it every day at work, particularly among our younger chefs.” Nicholson added: “Young chefs are definitely much more open to plant-based food. There’s a lot more information and inspiration out there now, which they’re using to learn and grow.” The chefs – all of whom serve meat on their menus alongside plant-based ones – revealed they eat plant-based meals at home at least twice a week, primarily for health reasons but also citing sustainability concerns. The global population is estimated to reach 9.1 billion by 2050 meaning an extra 200 million tonnes of meat annually if the present rate of consumption continues. Meat-Free Week organisers said just one swap could save greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to enough electricity to charge a mobile phone for two years. Globally, it would save more than 685 billion calories and the carbon equivalent of boiling a kettle more than one trillion times.
Chester restaurant tops OpenTable’s fit for foodies list: The Chef’s Table in Chester has topped OpenTable’s Top 50 Fit For Foodies list. The table has been compiled from more than 730,000 reviews of 7,200 sites submitted to the restaurant booking platform. A number of restaurants from outside London took leading spots in the list this year, with The Black Rat in Winchester coming second and Glasgow’s Number 16 third. London restaurants Mere and Pidgin were in seventh and ninth place behind Peace And Loaf in Newcastle, Forage & Chatter in Edinburgh, and Food For Friends in Brighton. The Chef’s Table team, including chef Liam McKay and co-owner Tom Hughes, received their award at the National Restaurant Awards. OpenTable vice-president Europe Adrian Valeriano said: “OpenTable diners are trusted sources for judging what makes a great dining experience. Through their continuous, valuable feedback from their own dining experiences, we’re able to reveal some of the finest restaurants in the UK for food fanatics. We’re excited to see this year’s top ten showcasing talent from various regions, highlighting the wealth of great restaurants throughout the country.”
Research highlights importance of cask to pubs: Cask ale drinkers are more likely to watch live sports and music events and support quiz nights compared with the average pub-goer, according to new research. The findings, by the producers of the Cask Report, showed sport plays a particularly important role with cask ale drinkers. Almost one-quarter (23%) of cask ale drinkers are more likely to attend the pub to watch sport compared with 13% of average pub-goers. Meanwhile, almost one-third (30%) of cask ale drinkers are more likely to go to the pub to take part in a pub quiz compared with 19% of average pub-goers, while more than one-quarter (28%) of cask ale drinkers will head to their local to watch live music compared with 17% of average pub-goers. When it comes to spontaneously going out for a drink, 65% of cask drinkers are likely to head to the pub compared with 53% of average pub-goers, while when going out for a planned meal or drink more than three-quarters (79%) of cask ale drinkers are likely to head to their local compared with 65% of average pub-goers. The research also showed when going on a date, one-fifth (20%) of cask ale drinkers are more likely to visit the pub compared with 15% of average pub-goers. More than one-quarter (28%) of female cask drinkers are more likely to do so than their male counterparts (18%). The research stated: “When promoting an upcoming event, make sure you make it as attractive as possible to cask drinkers – not just your regular customers but also those cask enthusiasts who are occasional visitors.”
Michelin-starred chef Atul Kochhar sacked from Dubai hotel after Islam tweet: Michelin-starred chef Atul Kochhar has had his contract with the JW Marriott Marquis hotel in Dubai terminated after he tweeted Islam had “terrorised” Hindus for 2,000 years. The chef operated the Rang Mahal restaurant in the hotel. Kochhar aimed the tweet at Indian actor Priyanka Chopra, who starred in an episode depicting a terrorist plot hatched by Hindu nationalists. It provoked outrage among some Indians leading Chopra to apologise. Kochhar tweeted: “It’s sad to see that you have not respected the sentiments of Hindus who have been terrorised by Islam over 2,000 years. Shame on you.” He later deleted the tweet and stated: “I fully recognise my inaccuracies that Islam was founded around 1,400 years ago and I sincerely apologise. I am not Islamophobic. I deeply regret my comments that have offended many.” However, a spokeswoman for the hotel told the Guardian: “Following the recent comments made by chef Atul Kochhar, we have taken the decision to end our agreement with him.” Kochar operates four restaurants in London, including Benares, where he became only the second Indian chef to receive a Michelin star. He also operates a restaurant in Madrid, is an author and has made numerous television appearances.
Levi Roots and Zoe Adjonyoh to support WeWork entrepreneurial initiative: Chef and Reggae Reggae Sauce founder Levi Roots and best-selling author and Zoe’s Ghana Kitchen founder Zoe Adjonyoh will discuss the ups and downs of setting up your own food business at an event next month. They will speak as part of collaborative workspace WeWork’s entrepreneurial hospitality initiative We, The Creators. In its second year, the initiative aims to “shine the light on inspiring entrepreneurs and bring together creative minds from around the world”. The Cookery And Community event will take place at WeWork Tower Bridge on Thursday, 5 July focusing on pioneers from the London food scene. Other events will centre on technology, art and design, health and fitness, music and fashion. We, The Creators comes in preparation for the Creator Awards, which will launch in the autumn and provide funds to UK businesses and entrepreneurs.
Former BII licensee of the year launches nationwide vegan recipe box service: Former British Institute of Innkeeping licensee of the year Ali Palmer has launched a nationwide, vegan-only recipe box delivery service. The Vegan Recipe Box Company offers a plant-based range of recipe kits that feature pre-measured ingredients and recipe cards for customers to create meals at home. Palmer said she wanted to create a means for people new to vegan dining to cook their own food at home using unfamiliar ingredients “without waste or worry”. The recipe boxes contain high-quality produce, organic where possible, and use as much recyclable and biodegradable packaging as possible. Palmer said: “Our recipe selection has been created by vegan chefs, tested on vegan diners and includes comfort food, exotic dishes, healthy options and old favourites. We give generous portions so most people are able to lunch on the leftovers the next day, solving the eternal problem for vegans of finding interesting vegan lunches. We believe more people choosing to live and eat more ‘plant-based’ would make the world a better place. Our mission is to make it easier for them to do so.” Palmer is managing director of CaterCost, which provides costing and profit analysis software for independent hospitality companies. She is also an author, a specialist trainer for the licensed retail sector, and has 17 years’ experience of co-owning and operating pubs, restaurants and hotels. She was also a business consultant to Alex Polizzi in her Hotel Inspector and Restaurant Rescue television programmes.
International premium ice cream brand Gelato Divino to make UK debut: International premium ice cream brand Gelato Divino is to open its debut UK site, at Intu Derby. Originally a family-owned ice cream shop in Italy, Gelato Divino has expanded rapidly since its launch in 2009. It now has more than 50 stores in the United Arab Emirates and has set its sights on expanding across the UK. Founder and managing director Nicolas Reincke said: “We know from our own experience how popular gelato is. There is strong demand in the UK so our store at Intu Derby is the perfect place for us to reach millions of customers each year.” Intu regional managing director Nick Round added: “Intu Derby is the perfect location for Gelato Divino to kick off its UK expansion as the centre offers a compelling blend of retail, catering and leisure with brands including Hollywood Bowl and Paradise Adventure Golf. The premium ice cream brand is a great addition to the centre’s vibrant mix.”
Revolution Bars Group withdraws appeal over alcohol licensing refusal for Revolución de Cuba in York: Revolution Bars Group has dropped its appeal after the company’s alcohol licence application to open a Revolución de Cuba site in York was refused. The company planned to invest £1.4m to open the site in part of a former BHS store in New Street that sits within the city’s Cumulative Impact Zone (CIZ). However, its bid was turned down by the city council because of police fears it would add to an almost “Beirut-like” atmosphere in the city, with drinkers clashing with families. Revolution Bars Group lodged an appeal with the magistrates’ court but documents show it has withdrawn them. A hearing had been scheduled for September, reports York Mix. At the time of the licence refusal in February, Cllr Ashley Mason said it had not been proved why Revolucion de Cuba should be exempt from CIZ rules. This was despite Revolution Bars Group offering earlier closing hours, conditions about door staff and emergency exits, and promising not to run “happy hour” promotions. The BHS building has been empty since 2016, when the chain folded. The council said no further licensing or planning applications had been made for the site. The company has not commented on any future plans in York.
Laksa bar concept Sambal Shiok launches debut bricks and mortar site in Highbury: Laksa bar concept Sambal Shiok has launched a debut bricks and mortar site in Highbury, north London. Owner Mandy Yin has opened the Malaysian-focused venue in Holloway Road at a site formerly occupied by Mexican restaurant Amigos. The venue has room for 40 diners – ten held back for walk-ins and counter dining. Yinn launched Sambal Shiok in London in 2013. Initially trading at street food markets, customer demand led her to focus on laksa (spicy Malaysian noodle soup) and a series of pop-ups in central and north London. She said on the restaurant’s website: “I take inspiration from everything I ate in my childhood growing up in Kuala Lumpur. Then I mix it up and put a new slant on it.”
Young’s boss sees earnings rise: Patrick Dardis, chief executive of London pub retailer Young’s, saw his earnings, excluding pension costs, increase to £597,000 for the year ending 2 April 2018 compared with £558,000 the year before, according to the company’s annual report. This year’s figure consisted of £353,000 salary and fees, £2,000 benefits and £242,000 bonus. Meanwhile, finance director Steven Robinson was paid £422,000, excluding pension costs, in his first full financial year in the position, which was made up of £251,000 salary and fees, £1,000 benefits and £170,000 bonus. Head of people Tracy Read received £346,000, excluding pension costs, in her first full financial year since being promoted to the board. This consisted of £212,000 salary and fees and £134,000 bonus.
Danny Meyer launches taco concept: Union Square Hospitality Group, the New York City operator owned by Danny Meyer, has launched a Mexican concept focusing on tacos. The company has opened Tacocina at Domino Park, a six-acre waterfront green space in Brooklyn’s Williamsburg neighbourhood. It has agreed a ten-year lease with owner Two Trees Management. Tacocina is billed as a year-round taco stand with outdoor seating for about 110 diners. Meyer said he considered opening a seafood shack at Domino Park considering its waterfront location but plumped for tacos as they had become an “indispensable part of the American table”. Meyer said his approach for Tacocina focused on authenticity – his chef, Barbara Garcia, was raised in Mexico – rather than adding global fusion-style tweaks. Tacocina’s menu has only six tacos – chicken, pork, beef, shrimp, mushroom, and cheese. Side offerings include tortilla chips served with salsa and/or guacamole, while drinks include cocktails, beer and wine, reports the Wall Street Journal. Union Square Hospitality Group is also set to debut a high-end dining spot, Manhatta, in the Financial District this summer.
New speciality coffee shop Kiss the Hippo opens debut site, in Richmond: New speciality coffee shop Kiss the Hippo has opened its debut site, in Richmond, south west London. The company, led by Can Eren, has opened an outlet in George Street that includes an in-house roaster and offers the “highest-quality, most sustainably produced coffee”. The food, which features salads, sandwiches and freshly baked goods, is made on-site daily using “natural, organic and responsibly sourced ingredients”, supplied mainly by local farmers. Environmental responsibility is at the heart of Kiss the Hippo, with 100% compostable cups, straws, lids and cutlery. Kiss the Hippo also offers coffee workshops.
City Pub Group opens Old Ticket Office at Cambridge station: The City Pub Group has opened its latest venue, The Old Ticket Office, at Cambridge train station. The pub and restaurant fronts the city’s new-look Station Square and features railway carriage-style seating. It offers brunch, main and afternoon tea menus alongside bar snacks and hot sandwiches, with options to take away. The pub has 16 keg and five cask lines with plans to add a bottle shop, while it offers discounts for key workers and will host monthly pop-ups to showcase local independent producers. Oliver Trezise, City Pub Group’s East Anglian operations manager, told the Cambridge News: “We have enjoyed the challenge of embracing the building’s historic charm while creating a comfortable, engaging environment. Our guests can enjoy anything from a quick beer to a bottle of wine or cocktail or grab some food on the run.” Last month, City Pub Group reported total sales were up 23% in the first 18 weeks of its financial year.
All Bar One launches sustainable wine collection, JD Wetherspoon to offer more drinks from UK and non-EU producers: All Bar One, the brand owned by Mitchells & Butlers, has launched a sustainable wine collection aimed at the consumer move towards “environmentally conscious consumption”. Each wine in the seven-strong #SustainableSipping collection has its own “planet-protecting story”, including lower carbon footprints, reduced waste methods and reusable energy practices. The range includes a UK-exclusive, on-tap rosé with a 100% recyclable keg and a sauvignon blanc from New Zealand where animals roam free across the vineyard. All Bar One marketing manager Laura Clarke said: “All Bar One’s new sustainable wine selection is one of the biggest at any UK bar chain. We like to trust the people behind the product and with these wines we feel really great about what we are serving.” Meanwhile, JD Wetherspoon is to offer more drinks from UK and non-EU producers across its 880 pubs from Monday, 9 July. It will replace champagne with sparkling wine from the UK and Australia and introduce three wheat beers brewed in the UK. Alcohol-free Adnams Ghost Ship will replace Erdinger alcohol-free beer from Germany. Wetherspoon will continue to serve Kopparberg cider from Sweden after the company confirmed it would produce its cider in the UK post-Brexit. Chairman Tim Martin said: “We intend to honour existing contracts with EU suppliers, some of which have several years to run. However, we are starting to make the transition to non-EU trade now. Brexit will create big marketing opportunities for UK and non-EU producers, which Wetherspoon is keen to encourage.”
London Shuffle to launch second site: The UK’s first dedicated shuffleboard bar concept is to launch a second site in Shoreditch, east London, next month. London Shuffle Club will open in a former warehouse in Ebor Street on Wednesday, 4 July. The new venue follows two pop-up seasons of The London Shuffle Club and its smaller table shuffle-focused London Shuffle Bar, which is in the same street. The 7,000 square foot venue will feature the UK’s first open-air shuffleboard terrace and focus on the classic floor shuffleboard version of the game. Cue sticks are used to slide weighted pucks or “biscuits” down a wooden board to land in the scoring triangle at the end of the lane. London Shuffle Club will also offer cocktails, ale and street food. Shuffleboard originated on cruise ships at the beginning of the 20th century as a popular on-deck activity. Similar bar-based concepts have opened in Brooklyn and Miami in the US.
San Carlo Group opens Regent Street site: Italian restaurant group San Carlo has opened its site in London’s Regent Street. The 130-cover venue is at a site formerly occupied by Spanish restaurant Bilbao Berria. Alberico Penati is heading the kitchen, who previously worked at Ristorante Carpaccio, the first Italian restaurant in France to win a Michelin star. His menu includes ingredients such as veal from Tuscany, beef from Piedmont and tomatoes from Sicily. Dishes include monkfish stewed with shallots and broad beans, and tagliolini with crab and artichokes. The interiors feature rare marble cut from specially selected blocks and more than 600 hand-made brass rosettes. San Carlo Group managing director Marcello Distefano said: “The Crown Estate’s £500m investment in the St James’s area has attracted some of the best names in international cuisine and we are delighted to be part of this.” The group operates 21 restaurants in the UK and international sites in Qatar, Bahrain and Bangkok.
Work delivery platform Feedr hits £450,000 crowdfunding target for expansion: Feedr, which aims to revolutionise healthy food at work using technology to bring fresh meals from a curated set of artisan vendors across London, has hit its £450,000 fund-raise on crowdfunding platform Crowdcube for expansion. The company, which includes restaurants such as Gail’s Bakery, Deliciously Ella, Detox Kitchen, Mildred’s and Farmstand among its vendors, is offering 13.85% equity in return for the investment. So far, 136 investors have pledged £459,470 and the campaign is “overfunding” with 15 days remaining. Former Crussh managing director Chris Fung has joined as an investor and adviser. Feedr has served 40,000 meals since its launch in 2016, with 300% revenue growth in the past 12 months. The pitch states: “Food demands are changing – people want better food and transparency in supply chains – but it can be difficult to access healthy, high-quality food at the office at an affordable price point. Our flexible online platform delivers healthy, fresh food to the workplace for group catering and individual meals from a selection of 80 curated vendors.”
Chinese Buffet closes Wrexham site: Chinese Buffet, which was founded in Bolton by Peter Wu and Paolo and David Hu in 2006, has closed its site in Wrexham. The company has shut the restaurant in Lord Street, which opened in 2013, reports the Daily Post. It comes after Chinese Buffet closed its branch in Halifax in January, although it launched a site in Liverpool in April. A statement posted on the Facebook page of the restaurant’s Wrexham branch reads: “It is with regret we have to announce with immediate effect the closure of the Chinese Buffet Wrexham. We would like to thank all our customers past and present.” Chinese Buffet, which now operates nine sites, previously said it planned to expand to more than 20 restaurants across the north of England by 2020.
Bob’s Lobster launches London Bridge wine bar and kitchen for debut permanent site: Street food market trader Bob’s Lobster has opened its debut permanent site, in the revamped arches of London Bridge train station. Specialising in lobster rolls, the company has opened the 55-cover site with decor featuring the brand’s original 1957 Volkswagen split-screen food truck. Street food signature dishes include ahi tuna tacos and lobster mac ‘n’ cheese, alongside crab rolls and new bite-size versions of lobster rolls. Bob’s Lobster Wine Bar & Kitchen offers 100 bottles of wine and 15 by the glass, with a reserved list of vintage Rieslings on rotation. A spokesman told Hot Dinners: “We have a surreal list of epic wine bottles to enhance wine and food combinations, all with the support of the wine team from Bedales of Borough.”
Scottish brewer WooHa hits £125,000 crowdfunding target: Scottish brewer WooHa has hit its £125,000 target on crowdfunding platform Crowdcube to upgrade its packaging equipment and boost sales efforts in the US. The company is offering 4.76% equity in return for the investment. So far 183 investors have pledged £155,230 and the campaign is “overfunding” with four days remaining. The company’s beers are stocked in JD Wetherspoon and Stonegate Pub Company sites in the UK, while WooHa also exports to EU countries and the US, with its “bold, Scottish branding” mainly aimed at export markets. WooHa Brewing Company was founded in 2015 and moved to a larger, 6.2-acre site in the Highlands last year to “accommodate rapid expansion”. It aims to be selling its products through 14 distributors in the US by the fourth quarter of this year. The pitch states: “WooHa is all about big ambitions and showing the world Scotland produces great beer. WooHa has always had a focus on the export market – with the US its main target. WooHa can be found in Tennessee, California and Washington DC. We aim to launch the beer in Alabama, Texas, Maryland, Florida, Indiana, Pennsylvania and Ohio. The new site has allowed capacity to increase five-fold. However, the volume of beer sold is limited by capacity of the current bottling line. WooHa is looking for funding to help finance new packaging equipment to remove this bottleneck and allow the company to continue to grow its international reach.”
Former FA head launches Alpine-themed restaurant and events space in Newcastle: Gary Hutchinson, former head of venue sales and commercial partnerships at the Football Association, has launched Alpine-themed concept Antler in Newcastle as part of his Chrysalis Leisure business. The venue has opened at the 55 Degrees North development in a space formerly occupied by Fat Buddha Asian Bar & Kitchen. Antler features a year-round garden with seating in “ski gondolas” and an extensive entertainment programme. Hutchinson said Antler retains Fat Buddha’s Asian roots with an oriental restaurant on the upper level, while the whole space can accommodate 800 people for events and conferences. He said: “We’re excited about finally being able to show people what Antler has to offer.” Hutchinson took control of Fat Buddha Asian Bar & Kitchen from Utopian Leisure in September 2017.
Marston’s head brewer to retire: Marston’s head brewer Jeff Drew is to retire at the end of the month after 16 years at the helm of its Wychwood and Ringwood breweries. He was the mastermind behind beers such as Hobgoblin Gold and Ringwood Circadian and has managed production and been involved in marketing initiatives. Drew even took Prince Charles and former prime minister David Cameron on tours around Wychwood. As a parting gift, Marston’s gave Drew a personalised beer presented by Jon Tilson and Maurice Walton, who both received their master brewer qualification while working under him. Drew said: “I have had some amazing years at Ringwood and Wychwood, where I have made memories I will truly look back on with joy. After 16 years I am sad to go but excited to put my feet up and enjoy retirement.”
Wagamama opens second Liverpool site: Wagamama has opened its second site in Liverpool. The company has launched the restaurant at New Mersey Retail Park, creating 70 jobs. The venue has 130 seats inside and a small external dining area. It joins PizzaExpress and Nando’s at the redeveloped complex in Speke. Wagamama marketing director Andre Johnstone told the Liverpool Echo: “Liverpool has proven to be a great city for us to continue to grow the Wagamama brand and we hope New Mersey Retail Park has the same success as our other retail locations throughout the UK.” Wagamama has 132 sites in the UK, including its other site in Liverpool – at the Liverpool ONE complex. Earlier this month Wagamama, which is owned by Duke Street and Hutton Collins, appointed advisors as it looks for new owners to support its global expansion plans.
Knightsbridge-based Joe’s Cafe to relaunch this month with new direction: Knightsbridge-based Joe’s Cafe is to relaunch this month with a new look, head chef and internationally inspired menu. The restaurant, which opened in 1984 within fashion brand Joseph’s Sloane Street store, is known across London for its modern European dishes. Under the direction of new head chef Anupam Som, who has previously worked at Michelin-starred Quilon, the menu will now take inspiration from cultures and cuisines around the world as well as serving some of Joe’s signature dishes. The new menu will include lemon butter-braised sea bass with saffron crushed parsnips, and chermoula-marinated tiger prawns with couscous and baba ghanoush. The restaurant will relaunch on Monday, 25 June.