December Restaurant Openings – 2018

Throughout 2018, we have seen some brilliant new restaurants open and December is no exception. Have a look at our top picks and to avoid disappointment, make sure you don’t delay in booking a table. If you’re anything like us, you’re already looking forward to what 2019 is going to deliver on the restaurant and bar scene… so be sure to watch this space!

 

Din Tai Fung London

With over 150 restaurants across 14 countries, Din Tai Fung, the Taiwanese steamed bun powerhouse has recently opened their UK restaurant, in London’s Covent Garden. The space will seat 250 people over two floors, with the addition of a Taiwanese bar. Expect queues as everyone is waiting to get their hands-on Din Tai Fung’s renowned steamed soup dumplings, which can take up to 40 minutes of preparation before you’ll even lay eyes on them.

Location: Covent Garden, 5-6 Henrietta Street, London, WC2E 8PS

Menu: Whilst their website doesn’t have a UK menu as of yet, taking a look at the menu in other countries, we can expect truffle and pork, pork and crab as well as steamed dumplings, wontons and more.

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Bao and Bing 

Inspired by the night street-markets of Taiwan, ‘Bao and Bing’ is Marylebone’s newest two-floored addition. This 50s and 60s feel establishment brings their well-known bao buns as well as an array of purely scrumptious dishes. Just when you thought it couldn’t get any better, you’ll have to head to the downstairs bar to try their made to order wheelcakes, cocktails and alcoholic ice lollies.

Top Dishes:

  • Bao bunsfillings that include “pork belly with chilli, coriander and chiu chow mayo” or “panko shrimp with wok cabbage, chilli, coriander and spicy sesame sauce” (and monthly specials too)
  • Speciality wheelcakes(round, waffle-type batter cakes traditionally filled with azuki bean paste) with fillings including vanilla and matcha and red bean.
  • Sharing startersinclude cucumber and cabbage kimchi and San Bei Ji Taiwanese Three Cup Chicken
  • Dan Bing(“egg cake”) – a traditional egg crepe breakfast roll with Wok Cabbage, Spring Onion, Crispy Wonton Skins and Hoi Sin Sauce (or add chicken or pork too)

Location: 22 Paddington Street, London, W1U 5QY 

 

Wild Food Cafe Islington 

Since it’s opening seven years ago in Neal’s Yard, this popular award-winning plant-based eatery has recently expanded with its new sister site located towards the top end of Upper Street in Islington. With their focus being on nutritious organic plant-based dishes their menu also benefits from gluten-free wood fired pizza, juices, herbal tonics, superfood smoothies, natural wines and superfood cocktails using organic spirits. Yes, you read that right, healthy cocktails! Apparently so! Unlike their other site, this one will be taking bookings, so we suggest you pick up that phone pronto…

Top Dishes

  • ‘Pulled Jackfruit Sandwich Bites’ – raw walnut and courgette bread, little gem, black garlic cashew cheese, BBQ pulled jack fruit
  • ‘Scallops of king oyster’ – oyster mushrooms, herb & garlic dip, wild sea purslane
  • ‘Wabi-Sabi Kale Salad’ – grilled squash, sunflower seed sour cream, probiotic kimchi, chestnuts, avocado, wakame
  • ‘Living Laksa’ – a vegan version of the national Malaysian dish, which combines coconut broth with galangal, lemongrass, ginger, nori, squash
  • ‘Queen of the Forest’ – a coconut-seared plantain stew with romanesco, black rice, amaranth, cacao nibs, and brazil nuts.

Location: 269-270 Upper Street, London, N1 2UQ

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Wild Rice and Mamasan 

If you love Thai as much as us then you are in for a treat! Not one, but TWO Thai restaurants (showcasing different concepts by first-time restaurateurs Pan Serirak and Mike Asavarut) have recently opened in the same Soho hotspot on Brewer Street. Wild Rice will be on the ground floor and sounds to be in the style of Kiln or Smoking Goat whereby they’ll serve up small plates using seasonal British ingredients to reinvent classic Thai dishes. Mamasan will be a more laid-back and casual dining experience downstairs where the menu features Thai street food dishes like Southern Thai Fried Chicken or Spicy Larb Fries with toasted rice, lime and chilli. Either way, you’ll be spoilt for choice and we recommend getting there early to avoid disappointment as there are just 36 seats upstairs and 25 below.

Top Dishes:

  • ‘Fried oyster with green chili vinaigrette’ – Fried oyster paired with a classic piquant Thai sauce with fresh coriander root and lime.
  • ‘Massaman Pork Bao’ – Charred slow-cooked pork belly slices with sweet onion and an aromatic curry sauce.
  • ‘Plaa salmon’ – Salmon sashimi dressed with a mild chilli and peanut sauce, lemongrass and crispy lime leaves.
  • ‘Goi Pla Thai ceviche’ – Thinly slices of fresh and raw seabass cooked in lime juice, chillies and toasted rice.
  • ‘Pulled Chicken leg “Khao Soi” soup’ – Slow-cooked pulled chicken in a light and aromatic curry flavoured with turmeric and galangal.

Location: 28 Brewer Street, Soho, London, W1F 0SR

Menu

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Le Cellar

St John Street in Clerkenwell now benefits from Head Chef Matt Smith’s (formerly of Cliffords in Temple) truly special tapas menu with unique combinations inspired from every corner of the globe. Each small dish is carefully crafted with an unusual selection of plates, a definite eye and mouth orgasm. The wine list features mostly natural, organic or biodynamic wines from artisan producers all around the world and even better news for local residents or workers, they’ll also offer take away at 50% off of the wine list prices.

Top Dishes

  • ‘The Artichoke’s Nest’ – Violet artichoke, quail egg & truffle.
  • ‘Scallops Burger’ – Squid ink bun, scallops & samphire.
  • ‘Pig’s Cheek’ – Pig’s cheek braised in wine.
  • Charcuterie and Assorted Cheeses and Sweet Treats

Location: 130 St John Road, London, EC1V 4JS

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Yamagoya 

What was (back in 2016) a famed ramen pop-up upstairs at Shuang Shuang now becomes a more permanent fixture in Soho. Taking over the main restaurant and bringing their famous raindrop cake with them, Yamagoya will entice you with their scrumptious small starters, delectable mains and very instagrammable desserts.

Top Dishes

  • ‘Kakiage Curry Rice’ with fried vegetables, pickled greens, a house special curry and Japanese rice.
  • ‘Yamagoya’ – handmade noodles in a tonkotsu broth, garnished with Japanese chashu pork belly, marinated bamboo shoot, Kikurage mushroom and nori.
  • ‘Oyako’ – a chicken bone broth with chicken chashu, marinated egg, wakame seaweed, bamboo shoot and spring onion.
  • A new Roast Beef ramen topped with slices of rare locally sourced roast beef, leek, and spring onion.

 

Location: 64 Shaftesbury Avenue, London, W1D 6LU

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Want to work in some on the finest restaurants in the industry this festive season? 

We recruit for some of the best-known restaurants, pubs, hotels and catering companies in London.

We have many jobs available throughout the Christmas period for Business and Commercial, Front of House and Back of House positions including bar jobs in fine establishments just like these.

If you’re looking for a temporary or permanent role, email info@thechangegroup.com or call us on 0207 923 6021 to discuss hospitality jobs in London.