Amuse-bouches: The latest restaurant news bites

This week in restaurant news: more parts of England are placed into Tiers 2 and 3, The Fat Duck temporarily closes due to a Covid-19 outbreak and German sausage and beer chain Herman ze German closes its doors.

The latest lockdown news: Yesterday it was announced that London, Essex (apart from Southend and Thurrock), York, North East Derbyshire, Chesterfield, Erewash in Derbyshire, Elmbridge in Surrey, and Barrow in Furness, Cumbria would be moving into Tier 2. Today, it was revealed that Lancashire, which includes the cities of Blackpool, Blackburn, Preston and Lancaster, will be joining the Liverpool city region in Tier 3, the highest level of the alert system.

British pub and restaurant groups hit in September: New data from the Coffer Peach Business Tracker has shown that total sales in Britain’s managed pub, bar and restaurant groups fell 20.3% in September, compared to the same period in 2019. Drinks-led pubs, in particular, suffered, with sales down 22.7% on September 2019. However bar groups were the worst affected. With 79% of sites trading, they reported that like-for-like sales were down 37.1% while total sales fell by 42.7%.

SpiritsEurope warns against arbitrary closures of the hospitality sector: Industry body SpiritsEurope has warned against what it has called “arbitrary closures of the hospitality sector”. It said the targeting of bars and restaurants by European governments has been “disproportionate”, and “may have a limited impact on the incidence of transmission”. It is calling on officials to reconsider rules such as curfews, alcohol sales restrictions and reducing trading hours.

Hospitality demonstration planned for London: The so-called HospoDemo is to go ahead next Monday from 10:30am to 12pm in Parliament Square, London. Attendees are encouraged to bang pots and pans with wooden spoons and shake cocktail shakers full of stones to make their voices heard.

10pm curfew passes House of Commons vote: A vote on the government’s new three-tier Covid control system, which includes the 10pm curfew, passed this week in the House of Commons, with 299 votes to 82.

The Fat Duck closes temporarily after Covid-19 outbreak: As reported by The Upcoming, Berkshire-based three Michelin-star restaurant The Fat Duck has been forced to close temporarily due to an outbreak of Covid-19. The result will shut for two weeks after “a number of employees” tested positive for the virus.

Luke Selby and his brothers to take over Evelyn’s Table: Chef Luke Selby, alongside his brothers Nat and Theo, is set to take over proceedings at Evelyn’s Table, the intimate restaurant in the cellar of the Blue Posts pub on Rupert Street in London. The restaurant will reopen towards the end of this month.

Crate and Silo launch the White Building Market: London brewery Crate and zero-waste restaurant Silo are set to launch The White Building market in their Hackney Wick home. The market will source sustainably-sourced produce and goods, including flour and smoked rapeseed oil, beers from Crate and natural wines from Sussex-based Tillingham. Silo will also sell some of its special crockery, made from recycled materials.

Bala Baya launches 5 is the new 7pm menu: Israeli eatery Bala Baya in London’s Southwark is extending the Eat Out to Help Out scheme this month. Diners will now receive 50% off food and soft drinks up to £10 everyday for early dinner bookings between 5pm and 6pm.

Openings:

Mamma Dough: Sourdough pizza specialist Mamma Dough has opened its seventh site in south London’s Tooting Bec.

The Hartley Arms: The Hartley Arms, formerly the Three Horseshoes, has opened in Donnington Village, Newbury and is now owned and run by operator Honesty.

Los Mochis: Pan-Pacific restaurant Los Mochis is set to open in London’s Notting Hill next month, and promises to combine “Mexican spirit with Japanese elegance, Mexican art and design with Japanese coolness and Mexican flavours with Japanese techniques”. Dishes include 22 different tacos alongside ceviche, tostadas, tiraditos and quesadillas.

Mr Ji: The Evening Standard reports that Taiwanese fried chicken joint Mr Ji in London’s Soho is set to reopen next month in partnership with Tā Tā Eatery. Dishes include the Ji Sando: chicken in a pineapple bap with a cucumber salad.

Tonkotsu Walthamstow: Ramen specialist Tonkotsu is set to open a branch in Walthamstow in north London. Opening in late November, there will also be gyozas and chicken wings on the menu as well as beer from Signature Brew next door.

Closures:

Herman ze German: German sausage and beer chain Herman ze German announced its closure on social media this week. The brand will permanently close its London sites after operating in the capital for the past 10 years. The company will continue to operate its site in Lörrach, Germany.

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