Broadgate Circle Reopens as Food Destination for City of London
Eleven restaurants are scheduled to start opening this week at Broadgate Circle, in the City of London, as part of a plan to create a new food-and-drink hub in the financial district.
The venues include the eponymous Jose Pizarro, where the Spanish chef will serve the Iberian cuisine that has won him fans in Bermondsey; Franco Manca, known for some of the best pizzas in London; and Yauatcha, a Chinese teahouse owned by Hakkasan Group.
"I've had so many people coming from the City to my restaurant in Bermondsey, it's about time for me to go to the City," Pizarro said in a telephone interview. "You have to be in the City and I fell in love with Broadgate as soon as I saw it."
Demand for office space in the City has increased as creative and tech companies join banks and other financial services groups in the area. UBS Group has leased a 700,000-square-foot building at Broadgate. About 6,000 workers will begin moving into the property in the fourth quarter of 2016.
Then-Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher presided over the start of construction work at the Broadgate office complex in 1985. Prince Charles opened the Broadgate Arena (now Broadgate Circle) in 1987. GIC, Singapore's sovereign wealth fund, bought a 50 percent stake in Broadgate in 2013 and formed a joint venture with British Land, which retained its 50 percent stake.
The venues at Broadgate Circle will participate in a program of food, drink, and cultural events throughout the summer months, according to British Land. Here's a rundown of the establishments, with provisional opening dates in parentheses. Restaurants are sometimes delayed, while others open early on a trial basis, so it's best to check before you head on over.
Aubaine: This will be the ninth London site for the French restaurant, boulangerie, and patisserie chain: All-day dining. (April 15)
Beany Green: The independent Australian coffee shop was founded by Prue Freeman, ex-UBS, who worked in Broadgate for 10 years: Brunch, salads, wraps, and banana bread. (April 15)
Comptoir Libanais: Fast, healthy and affordable Lebanese food to eat in or take away: open from breakfast to dinner. (April 16)
Crab Tavern: New concept that tweaks surf-and-turf with specialties such as crab doughnuts, cheddar stuffed bacon burger, and Singapore crab. (June)
Franco Manca: Started in Brixton, serving the best pizza I have tasted in the U.K.: an 80-cover restaurant. (To be confirmed.)
Jose Pizarro: Pizarro's flagship serves some of the finest Spanish food in London. He says this new venue will be like a local restaurant in Spain, serving drinks all day and staying open until 1 a.m. at weekends. (May)
Shoryu Ramen: The Japanese group's fourth restaurant will serve Kyushu cuisine: Hakata tonkotsu ramen and Shoryu buns, plus a robata grill and sushi bar. (April 16)
StreetDots: A venue for the best of London’s street food-trucks for Broadgate Circle: Food options will change on a daily basis. (April 15)
Street Kitchen: A fixed home for the team known for its vintage Airstream truck: breakfast, sandwiches, salads, beers. (June)
Yauatcha City & Yauatcha Patisserie: Hakkasan Group has chosen this new development for the second site of Michelin-starred Yauatcha, and its first stand-alone patisserie: dim sum and cakes. (May 20)
Richard Vines is the chief food critic for Bloomberg. Follow him on Twitter @richardvines. To contact the author on this story: Richard Vines at email@example.com.