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Wed 6th Nov 2019 - Propel Wednesday News Briefing

Story of the Day:

Camerons Brewery reports turnover and Ebitda boost: Camerons Brewery has reported turnover increased 14% to £84.1m for the year ending 5 May 2019, compared with £74.0m the previous year. Revenue from pubs was up to £22.0m compared with £18.1m the year before, while turnover from brewing rose to £62.1m from £55.9m the previous year. Group Ebitda was up to £5.8m compared with £5.6m the year before. Operating profit was down to £1.6m from £2.1m the previous year, while pre-tax profit fell to £397,000 compared with £1.2m the year before. In their report accompanying the accounts, the directors stated: “Our managed division consisted of 27 outlets at April 2019 with another Head Of Steam addition made shortly after the year end and we have had offers accepted on a further two outlets, which we expect to complete imminently. We have continued to make significant investment across the managed division with another five major refurbishment schemes completed during the period. These investments have, as was the case in the prior year, had a slight impact on the bottom line conversion due to the associated closure periods. However, continuing operational performance remains strong. Our tenanted division, which consisted of 48 outlets at the year-end, has performed well. We continue to invest to improve returns and completed three refurbishment schemes during the year. We have created a franchise division with initial signs very positive. There were two outlets in this division at the year-end and we have added another one since by acquiring a freehold property in Sunderland. The contract brewing and bottling business is continuing to grow and has had another very strong year. In summary, the directors are pleased with the progress the company continues to make across its divisions.” Net debt at the year-end was circa £26.1m compared with £24.0m the prior year. This has resulted in a net debt to Ebitda ratio of 4.5 times. The number of employees increased to 522 at the end of the period from 450 the previous year.

Industry News:

Fast food and takeaway spend rises 6.9% in October despite consumer caution: Spending on fast food and takeaways increased 6.9% year-on-year in October despite caution among consumers, according to the latest Barclaycard data. Although pubs and clubs saw a 5.5% year-on-year rise in spending during the month, the figure was down 12.9% month-on-month. Overall consumer spending grew only 1.5% year-on-year in October, narrowly falling behind the current rate of inflation and reinforcing wider data that indicated Brits opted to stay at home amid bleak autumn weather. Data from Barclaycard, which sees almost half the nation’s credit and debit card transactions, revealed essential spending grew 0.2% year-on-year, bolstered by a 1.5% increase in supermarket expenditure. However, spending on fuel fell 3.9% year-on-year compared with the record high petrol prices seen in October 2018. Non-essential expenditure grew 2.0% year-on-year despite more than one-fifth (22%) of consumers saying they spent less than usual on leisure activities and evenings out during the month. This had an impact on entertainment, which includes concert and theatre tickets, with the category declining 3.0% year-on-year. UK adults appear to be carefully balancing their budgets as spending at discount stores grew 7.7%, with more than three-fifths (61%) seeking value for money from purchases. More than two-thirds (69%) of respondents feel confident in their household finances, while almost three-quarters (74%) are confident in their ability to live within their means. However, retailers could be in for a challenging Christmas as less than half (47%) of Brits are confident they will be able to spend as much as they normally do on festivities. In parallel, overall consumer confidence remained low in October, with less than one-third (31%) of respondents feeling positive about the UK economy, rising to 37% for over-55s but dropping to 25% for 34 to 54-year-olds. Barclaycard director Esme Harwood said: “Ongoing economic uncertainty combined with a bleak start to autumn led many Brits to stay in rather than spend out last month, choosing takeaways and evenings at home over socialising at bars or restaurants. As we head into the festive period, shoppers are also feeling cautious about their finances. It’s likely we’ll see consumers continue to seek value.”

Sector like-for-likes up 1.1% in October as London venue food sales drive growth: Sector like-for-likes rose 1.1% year-on-year in October as food sales at venues in London drove growth, according to S4labour, the online labour-scheduling management system from Catton Hospitality. According to analysis of more than 1,500 restaurants, pubs, bars, hotels and cafes that use S4labour software, there was positive like-for-like growth for food and drink sales alike – food sales grew 0.8% while drinks sales were up 1.3%. There was a geographic split in results, with the capital outperforming the rest of the country. London sites saw an overall uplift of 2.9% in sales, whereas sites outside London saw a more modest 0.7% increase. Drinks sales inside and outside London were relatively comparable, with a like-for-like boost of 1.6% for sites inside the capital and 1.2% outside. However, food sales were driven significantly by London, where there was a 6.1% increase in like-for-like sales compared with a 0.1% slip for sites outside the capital. The uplift in sales follows a slight fall in like-for-likes in September, where the Rugby World Cup’s early stages failed to convert into significant growth in drinks sales. S4labour said the boost in drinks sales in October would suggest the latter stages of the tournament were a stronger driver nationally.

Definition of ‘restaurant’ to change as takeaway sales drive US industry growth to 2030: The definition of “restaurant” will change as takeaway sales continue to drive industry growth in the US, according to a new report. The National Restaurant Association (NRA) has released its outlook on the projected state of the restaurant industry in the next ten years. The Restaurant Industry 2030: Actionable Insights Of The Future report stated the restaurant of the future would be smaller and incorporate more automated kitchen equipment, while nutrition and sustainability would drive menus. The report forecast restaurant sales to reach $1.2 trillion by 2030, while the industry workforce is likely to exceed 17 million. During the next decade technology and data will become a greater focus for restaurants as they adapt to growing consumer expectations in the on-demand world. Guests will expect a seamless digital experience and want their preferences known at each interaction with a restaurant. As takeaway continues to accelerate, consumers will place more importance on experiential dining for on-premise occasions. The report said fewer meals would be cooked at home leading to the continued rise of delivery, virtual restaurants, subscription services, and grab and go. Cloud kitchens would continue to grow, fuelled by the expansion of centralised kitchens and delivery-only brands. Consumers may grow increasingly loyal to third-party delivery apps rather than restaurants. Hudson Riehle, senior vice-president of the NRA’s research and knowledge group, said: “The radical transformation of the last decade will change the way the industry operates. It’s exciting to ponder how the industry will grow and transform over the next ten years and consider how the Association can best support the industry in capitalising on these opportunities.”

Buying local and seasonal produce to become more important as diners seek healthy options: Buying local and seasonal produce will become ever more important as diners seek healthy options, according to a new report by food recipe box company Gousto. The report surveyed 3,000 Brits aged 18 and over last month, with almost one-quarter (24%) citing health as the main reason for choosing a meal, ahead of affordability (22%), ease (21%) and trying new dishes (3%). The report, produced in partnership with “food futurologist” Morgaine Gaye, said consumers were learning more about food waste and upcycling, which would lead to “interesting applications of otherwise discarded ingredients”, with “local” as opposed to “exotic” becoming the new watchword. Gaye said: “People will be more concerned about food miles and the damage air-freighting and intensive farming has wreaked on the planet. The trend will move towards growing locally and buying seasonally from our collective growing groups, responsible producers and even foraging for wild ingredients such as herbs, berries, mushrooms, nettles and garlic.” Gaye forecast humans were on the brink of a “nutritional revolution”, which would see people fitted with “skin-embedded sensory devices” by 2035 to calculate optimum diet based on genetic background and pre-existing medical conditions. Gaye also said a 3D food printer would become the “must-have” kitchen item by 2035, with deluxe models even capable of preparing a “Michelin-starred meal”.

Company News:

Creams reports sales up 10% in first half, full-year turnover passes £40m: Dessert parlour operator Creams has reported sales are up 10% to £22.4m in the first half of its current financial year. Pre-tax profit in the period was £1.1m while three restaurants have opened – in Kentish Town, Peckham, and Eastbourne – taking the total number of cafes to 89 with a further nine in the pipeline. The company has also started trialling savoury options on its menu. The announcement comes as Creams reported sales for the 52 weeks to 31 March 2019 increased 37% to £40.1m, compared with £29.2m the previous year. Delivery sales through Deliveroo, Just Eat and UberEats grew to represent 14% of sales, up from 11% the year before. Profit before tax increased 76% to £1.6m compared with £900,000 the previous year, while 21 cafes opened during the period. During the year the company enhanced its menu by launching vegan options including waffles, crêpes, cakes and milkshakes. The company continues to develop its people and invest in technology and infrastructure to drive order volume and provide a strong platform for growth. It has strengthened its management team with the appointments of Elton Gray as commercial and operations director, Lauren Haslewood as marketing director, and Jason Sinclair as head of procurement. Chief executive Adam Mani said: “We are delighted to report a very strong year of progress for Creams as we continue to develop our position as leader in the growing UK dessert market. This performance, which has been delivered despite the wider challenges having an impact on many players in the UK casual dining sector, is underpinned by our vibrant and distinctive brand, unique customer proposition and menu innovation. The current financial year has begun well, supported by the strengthening of our leadership team and the broadening of our customer offer through the recent launches of our new savoury menu. We look forward with confidence to continuing our ambitious growth plans and maintaining this momentum into the second half.” Creams was founded in 2008.

Pizza Punks eyes further growth as McCulloch takes virtual CMO role: Pizza, music and cocktails concept Pizza Punks has strengthened its senior management team after Mark McCulloch, founder of premium brand and marketing consultancy Supersonic Inc, agreed to join the business as virtual chief marketing officer. McCulloch, who was formerly with YO! and Pret A Manger, will work with the three-strong group four days a month. His appointment comes at a time when Brad Stevens-led Pizza Punks looks to expand its national presence, building on its sites in Glasgow, Belfast and Newcastle. The company has big plans to expand across the UK in the next five years, targeting sites in Birmingham, Bristol, Dublin, Edinburgh, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester and Sheffield. Stevens told Propel: “We are delighted Mark has joined Pizza Punks as he fits the culture, embodies what modern marketing needs to be, and comes with a wealth of experience from YO!, Pret A Manger and countless other brands we admire.” McCulloch added: “I have known Brad for a couple of years and believe he’s a winner with lots of vision and energy to make great things happen. Add that to the company’s concept, culture, food, team and customer feedback and we’re well positioned for growth while having lots of fun doing it.”

Revolution Bars Group trials virtual delivery brand: Revolution Bars Group, the operator of 77 premium bars trading under the Revolution and Revolución de Cuba brands, has launched a virtual delivery brand, Propel has learned. The Cuban Sandwich Shop has gone live in two Revolución de Cuba sites, in Manchester and Sheffield. Chief executive Rob Pitcher told Propel: “We have a classic Cuban sandwich on the Revolución de Cuba menu and it sells very well, so this was a natural brand extension.” The virtual brand features four sandwiches priced between £7.00 and £8.00 and a couple of sides at £3.00 to £3.50. There are also four meal deals priced between £9.00 and £12.00. The Classic Cubano features ham, pulled pork and Emmental cheese in a baguette, while the Sloppy Joe features shredded beef in a rich chilli tomato sauce, spinach and cheese. The El Pollo Cubano comprises Cuban spiced chicken, grilled peppers, spinach, basil and cheese, while the Batata Cubano has sweet potato seasoned in a Cuban spice mix with basil, mint, roast peppers and courgettes, tomatoes and pickled onions.

BabaBoom to launch fund-raising round on Seedrs: Fledgling kebab restaurant concept BabaBoom is to launch a fund-raising round on Seedrs next week with an initial minimum target of £400,000. The two-strong London-based concept, which is led by Eve Bugler, is embarking on the fund-raise as is targets becoming the “UK’s leading quality kebab operator with 20 sites by 2025”. The fund-raising, which will launch on Wednesday, 13 November, values the business at £3m. The company is targeting sites across London and the south east, and seeking revenue in excess of £20m and a valuation of £40m-plus by the end of the financial year ending 2024. Since opening in Battersea Rise in 2016, the business has served more than 170,000 kebabs. Last summer the business launched a second restaurant, in Upper Street, Islington. Together the restaurants are delivering an annualised revenue of in excess of £1.5m, with Battersea reaching maturity Ebitda of 20%. With both restaurants in double-digit like-for-like growth and overall company profitability secured, the company said it was raising money to open its third restaurant in a central London location. The concept has been backed by several leading entrepreneurs including Gumtree founder Mike Pennington and Entrepreneur First founder Matt Clifford, alongside industry veterans such as ex-global Nando’s chief executive David Niven and the founders of Las Iguanas, Wahaca, Be At One and Flat Iron. Bugler told Propel: “People ask me ‘Why kebabs?’ and the simple answer is because I love eating them – the combination of freshly grilled flatbread, charcoal cooked meats, fresh salads and Middle Eastern spicing is a timeless one. Beyond that the kebab market is great commercial opportunity. We’re a nation of kebab lovers with 1.3 million served daily in the UK, but the quality kebab market is a huge white space. We’re excited about bringing our inventive flavours to more locations across London and the south east.” Niven told Propel: “As one of the original and ongoing investors in BabaBoom I am delighted the business has survived and thrived. With a softening of rental levels I believe this is a good time to acquire additional high quality locations so the right time to invest in this profitable business led by a young and totally committed team.”

Patty & Bun to open second Soho site after securing former Breddos Tacos venue: Better burger brand Patty & Bun is to open its second Soho site. The company has secured the former Breddos Tacos site in Kingly Street for an opening this month. The restaurant will seat 65 upstairs and offer Patty & Bun’s classic menu of burgers and collaboration dishes. Founder Joe Grossmann said: “We are pumped to open at this iconic London landmark! It’s amazing to be part of the Shaftesbury estate with so many great restaurants and shops. We can’t wait to get open and become part of the community.” Patty & Bun currently operates eight sites in London including its other Soho venue, in Goodge Street, as well as a series of concessions.

Erpingham House to proceed with Brighton opening despite unsuccessful £250,000 crowdfunding campaign: Erpingham House, the UK’s largest plant-based restaurant, will push on with plans to launch in Brighton despite failing to raise £250,000 on crowdfunding platform Crowdcube towards the project, Propel has learned. Erpingham House founder Loui Blake said the project would still go ahead after he agreed terms on a site in Duke Street. Blake was offering 15% equity for the £250,000 investment, giving the company a pre-money valuation of £1.4m. The funds would also have been used to improve his Norwich site. Blake said: “Unfortunately we didn’t reach our crowdfund target with Crowdcube. However, we will proceed and open Erpingham House in Brighton in January. We have agreed terms on the site and are following up with those who have expressed an interest in investing.” The new Erpingham House will also specialise in vegan food but with the offer refined to appeal to a “more general audience”. Like its debut site, the new venue will be free from single-use plastic and be almost 100% carbon neutral. Last month Propel revealed Blake had launched virtual sub-brand Vegan Dough Co, which offers vegan pizza through Deliveroo or to collect from its restaurant in Norwich. Blake also operates all-day vegan cafe concept Kalifornia Kitchen.

Sheldon Inns opens sixth site with Ei Group, in Worcestershire: Midlands-based pub management company Sheldon Inns has opened its sixth site with Ei Publican Partnerships. The Chequers Inn in Fladbury, Worcestershire, has undergone a £180,000 joint refurbishment and features a new bar and restaurant that opens on to the gardens. The pub will offer a fine-dining experience and host community events such as weddings and christenings. The Chequers’ eight bedrooms have also been fully refurbished complete with new bathrooms. Sheldon Inns director Martin Cartwright said: “I am hugely excited to restore this pub and revive it as a venue. I’m confident that following the refurbishment the Chequers Inn will be a great success.” Ei Publican Partnerships regional manager Matthew Obrey added: “I am over the moon to see the pub at its full potential.” Last month Sheldon Inns stepped in to rescue James Bond-themed pub The Goldfinger in Highworth, Wiltshire. As well as its Midlands heartland, Birmingham-based Sheldon Inns also operates pubs in Bristol, Oxford, the Cotswolds and Shropshire.

No1 Lounges promotes Upton to chief executive: No1 Lounges, which operates pay-on-entry lounges at airports across the UK, has promoted John Upton to chief executive, Propel has learned. Upton joined No1 Lounges in November 2018 as chief operating officer. He was formerly managing director of Leon and a member of the McDonald’s UK leadership team, while he is currently a board member of Motherclucker and Naked Deli. No1 Lounges chairman Steve Richards said: “As chief operating officer, John’s experience and knowledge of quality high-volume customer service businesses has already put us on the path to an improved passenger experience that reflects our guests’ needs. John’s passion for our people and their development is infectious and I’m certain this will serve us well in setting new standards for quality and service in airport lounges wherever we open.” In the summer the company opened its 12th site and first at London Luton under the group’s Clubrooms brand. No1 Lounges also operates at Heathrow, Gatwick, Birmingham and Edinburgh airports.

Hove-based cafe and wine bar acquires second site, plans third: Hixon Green, the New York-style cafe and wine bar based in Hove, has acquired its second site, with plans in place for a third. The company has acquired the former Aqua Restaurant in Lewes. The site in Friars Walk is next to Loungers’ Fuego Lounge in a modern development that forms part of the Whitbread-owned Premier Inn. Hixon Green also plans to open a site in Brighton in 2020. A spokesman said: “We are excited to bring our brand to Lewes as we feel our New York-inspired space will complement the mix of strong local independent operators alongside high-street operators that thrive in this busy East Sussex town.” Kate Dowd, of Fleurets, who represented Hixon Green in the acquisition, said: “The guys at Hixon Green have a clear plan for a considered expansion. Critical to this is securing the right units in the right locations to cement their brand in the market place.”

YO! launches grab-and-go concept, in Manchester: YO!, the Richard Hodgson-led global multi-brand, multi-channel Japanese food group, has made a return to the grab and go market by launching a standalone YO! To Go site in Manchester’s Piccadilly station. The new format sees the traditional conveyor belt removed, while the reimagined YO! To Go kiosk uses interactive technology to allow customers to build their own meals by choosing from different-sized dishes and bases. Hodgson said: “We have modified the restaurant to better suit our customer’s needs and habits. In busy locations and cities, we’ve found people want the convenience of fast food but without having to compromise on quality and taste – we believe our YO! To Go format ticks all the boxes.” The company said the Manchester Piccadilly launch would pave the way for further openings in other key cities across the UK from early 2020. The group previously trialled a standalone YO! To Go unit at London’s Charing Cross station but it closed a few years ago.

Manchester-based brewer Seven Bro7hers to open second beerhouse, in Liverpool: Manchester-based Seven Bro7hers Brewery is to open a second beerhouse, in Liverpool. The company, founded by brothers Keith, Kit, Guy, Luke, Daniel, Nathan and Greg McAvoy in 2016, will launch the bar at the £100m Wolstenholme Square development. It will be the first of a number of independent cafes, bars, restaurants and retailers opening at the Elliott Group scheme in the coming months. Keith McAvoy said: “We are excited Wolstenholme Square in Liverpool city centre is to be our first Seven Bro7hers beerhouse outside Salford. We can’t think of a better place than Liverpool, which embraces all Seven Bro7hers strives for – community, togetherness and family.” CBRE letting agent Nick Huddleston said five other units were under negotiation. He added: “Seven Bro7hers is a cracking brand and the other businesses we’re in talks with will sit nicely alongside.” Elliot Group director Elliot Lawless said: “Liverpool is transforming into a city of independents. We’re off to a great start with Seven Bro7hers and I look forward to confirming other tenants shortly.” Seven Bro7hers raised more than £660,000 on crowdfunding platform Crowdcube earlier this year to open four beerhouses and expand production.

Costa drops plant-based milk fee: Costa Coffee, which is owned by Coca-Cola, has dropped its surcharge on plant-based milk. Lactofree and plant-based alternatives are now being offered at no extra cost when customers opt to customise their drink. The company tweeted: “Want another reason to be merry? We’re making our dairy-alternative coconut, almond and soya free this Christmas. Enjoy!” Costa confirmed the surcharge wouldn’t return after Christmas. The move follows a campaign launched by non-profit organisation Veganuary, which called out chains including Starbucks, Pret A Manger and Costa for charging between 20p and 50p extra for non-dairy milk.

Jing to open debut retail site offering immersive tea-tasting: Tea brand Jing is to open its debut retail site offering an immersive tasting experience, Propel has learned. The venue will launch at the St Christopher’s Place development in central London on Monday, 18 November. It will be the first outlet Jing has opened in its 15-year history and will offer 45-minute “tea flights”, while a double-fronted retail space will showcase Jing’s tea and accessories. Ed Eisler spent many years exploring Asia’s tea gardens before founding Jing in 2004. He said: “The opening of our first shop and tasting bar is a huge milestone for Jing. It’s the natural next step in our mission to revolutionise tea culture by inspiring people to choose teas that express the unique character of their origin and tea-maker.”

Bradford-based coffee shop eyes further growth after doubling up: Bradford-based coffee shop Tiffin Coffee is eyeing further expansion after doubling up in the city. The company has launched Tiffin Coffee Grande in the former Patisserie Valerie unit at The Broadway shopping centre. Tiffin Coffee has invested almost £100,000 to open the 1,700 square foot cafe, which has capacity for more than 70 people and focuses on desserts and milkshakes alongside its hot drinks offer. Tiffin Coffee also has a site in The Wool Exchange in Bradford that has been operating for about 20 years. Marketing manager John Varey told The Business Desk: “The Broadway’s range of bars and dining experiences is one of the most compelling in the region, which made it an easy decision to open Tiffin Coffee Grande in the centre. Growth has been phenomenal since launching and we’re making further plans to expand into units in Leeds and Holmfirth.” Ian Ward, general manager of The Broadway, added: “We are delighted to welcome yet another exciting addition to The Broadway dining portfolio, especially one with such an extensive history in Bradford. Alongside the selection of retailers to have opened this year, the launch of Tiffin Coffee Grande marks our 19th venue to grow what is an already impressive array of restaurants.”

Australian chef Shaun Presland to launch Mayfair pop-up next week for debut UK site: Australian chef Shaun Presland is to open his debut UK site next week. The former executive chef of contemporary Japanese restaurant chain Saké in Australia will launch Pacific on Wednesday, 13 November as a four-month residency in Heddon Street, Mayfair. The venture will replace the pop-up pasta restaurant run by Chris Leach and David Carter. Presland planned to open Pacific at the former Foxlow site in Soho but the move was called off following planning issues. Pacific will be an all-day contemporary Japanese restaurant offering sashimi, grilled seafood, and vegetable and meat dishes. Drinks will include Australian wine, Japanese-influenced cocktails and barley tea. Presland said: “It is exciting to open Pacific in a city that has evolved to become one of the best in the world for food. We look forward to sharing our vision as a pop-up at 10 Heddon Street in Mayfair for the next few months as we solidify our plans to develop the business from there.”

Halo Burger secures first bricks and mortar site: Plant-based burger concept Halo Burger is to launch its first bricks and mortar site, in Shoreditch, east London. The Ross Forder-led concept has secured the former Selekt Chicken site in Great Eastern Street. Halo Burger, which claims it is the UK’s first brand to offer 100% plant-based bleeding burger the Beyond Burger, launched a site in Pop Brixton late last year. The Beyond Burger is the creation of US company Beyond Meat, which states it’s a “revolutionary plant-based burger that looks, cooks and satisfies like beef” and contains no soy or gluten. Beetroot juice provides the “bleeding” effect of the burger. CDG Leisure acted on the Shoreditch deal.

BrewDog sells ‘Hop Hub’ distribution headquarters: Scottish brewer and retailer BrewDog has sold its global distribution headquarters known as “Hop Hub” for an eight-figure sum. CBRE Global Investors has bought the 129,000 square foot distribution centre and will lease it back to BrewDog in a 20-year agreement. The facility is on the 650-acre Eurocentral industrial estate in Motherwell. Tom Stanton, a senior associate at CBRE Global Investors, told Property Week: “This is a unique opportunity to acquire a well-specified, modern facility in Scotland’s premier logistics and distribution location. The acquisition is consistent with our continued emphasis on prime real estate in desirable locations and provides a highly attractive, secure long-income stream in line with the fund strategy.” MWM Property Consultants advised BrewDog, while Knight Frank acted for CBRE Global Investors.

Food market with communal dining to launch in Borough Market this month: A food market offering communal dining will launch in Borough Market, central London, this month. Borough Market Kitchen in Jubilee House will open on Monday, 18 November featuring more than 20 traders using seasonal produce from the market. Established operators such as pasta concept La Tua Pasta will sit alongside newcomers including Mei Mei by chef Elizabeth Haigh and a new pintxos bar from Mimo London. The space will be filled with long tables to encourage communal eating. Guests will be able to take their pick from cuisine that will range from Iranian Scotch eggs to freshly made pasta, with at least 30% of ingredients in every dish sourced from the market. Continuing an emphasis on ethics and sustainability, Borough Market Kitchen will be built from recycled materials and be free of single-use plastic.

Former Ritz chef to head kitchen at new Chelsea restaurant and deli: Former Ritz chef Chris Hill is to head the kitchen at Chelsea restaurant and deli Colette, which will launch in January. Colette will open in Fulham Road offering a seasonal menu and featuring a walnut counter and terrazzo floor. Hill’s menu will include dishes such as veal blanquette and chestnut gnocchi with glazed button onions, and twice-baked cheese soufflé with poached apricots and walnuts. Desserts will include caramelised apple tart, while weekend specials will include grilled lobster with a Thai dressing. The deli will offer more dishes to take away, including beef tartar and home-made scotch eggs, Hot Dinners reports, alongside charcuterie, smoked salmon, caviar, fresh truffles, wine, cheese and chocolates.

Darling and Edge to open basement cocktail bar: Immersive events studio Darling and Edge will open a basement cocktail bar in London this month. The company will launch The Cockatiel Club in Waterloo Road on Friday, 15 November. The 60-capacity venue will offer cocktails named after birds, including the Phoenix (amaretto, whiskey and brandy with chocolate and burnt orange bitters). The Cockatiel Club will be below Darling and Edge’s restaurant Hello Darling and experiential house party-style bar Darling House.

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