The rise of speciality restaurants

There has been a notable rise in the number of  great restaurants opening in London over the last 12 months.

Notably the likes of Pitt Cue Co, Dabbous, Burger & Lobster, Cut at 45 Park LaneLa Bodega Negra10 Greek StreetDucksoupCeviche, Shrimpys, Chicken Shop, The Tramshed and recently Bubbledogs  – a champagne and hotdog bar from some of the ex Ledbury guys.

There are some obvious trends in many of the new places. 1> They specialise in 1 or two dishes/ingredients. 2 > They’re not expensive – (save for Duck$oup – bring some moolah)

As well as being in vogue, these places can have lower costs due to fewer and less expensive ingredients (perhaps without need for top expensive chefs). It likely born out of  economic climate in London, and is perhaps one the few good things to come from this.

Jay Rayner explains it well in his Pitt Cue review.

And the future looks to hold more of the same. Check out five new places opening this Autumn including Death by Burritos



Snickers = thinking man’s Mars bar, right? Of course it does. If you’re serious about your cheap thrills, then it’s worth doing them right. Put your Snickers in the fridge for at least 20 mins. This can work for Mars too, although you should chop the bar into little pieces for best results. Flavonoids, yeh

Zagat’s survey: Top 10 London restaurants

Zagat’s top Ten London restaurants here

It’s interesting that Zagat highlights that service is the factor letting restaurants down. I think most would agree that amazing food means very little when the service is bad. Why aren’t there more great food restaurants with better service? Are front of house invested enough to really care? Are they well paid enough? Do they have any ownership of the business? Highly unlikely.

So many family run restaurants have such exceptional service and are loved due to their service. Is this is is due to them having their interests aligned with the restaurant itself? Emotionally and financially they are probably tied and thus they care about and understand the service.

Perhaps this is a good thing. It gives family run businesses a chance to compete with the big boys.

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