5 of the best new restaurant openings in 2019 all serve sandwiches
One of our favourite bites is getting a high-end global makeover in London
Let's talk sandwiches. There's the oozy, stacked, tricky to fit your chops around kind; the neat and pretty Japanese (AKA the Sando) ones or the similarly precise afternoon tea take; the steak wedged inside a juice soaked brioche variety... Hmmm sandwiches.
The thing is, while reflecting on what we think are the best new London restaurant openings of the last year, Food Tribe noticed a theme. Yes, you guessed it, sandwiches!
First let us take you back to the summertime when the katsu sando was enjoying a moment in the spotlight on Instagram. These edible works of art have long been an institution in Japan, but their status as a revered foodie trend was cemented when TÓU, a restaurant dedicated entirely to the sando concept, opened in July in London. The hype was real and so were the queues.
TÓU aren't the only London based restaurant to launch in 2019 with sandwiches front and centre of their menus. Here are the newbies giving London stalwarts such as Max’s Sandwich Shop a run for their mayo. Tell us, did you made a sandwich after reading this? We did.
Take a look at the most in-demand sandwich of summer '19 — the clean lines, dense meaty filling and loose, rough slaw: this equals delicious in our eyes and many of you agreed.
The Iberian katsu sando (above) was actually first introduced to London in June via a pop-up called TāTā Eatery at Tayēr + Elementary on Old Street and caused city-wide hysteria.
Award-winning chefs Ana Gonçalves and Zijun Meng can take credit for this frenzy and decided to make the sando a permanent fixture by opening TÓU, their latest outpost, with a curated menu of simply “unique, flavoursome sandwiches."
TÓU is a 45-seater katsu sando and rice bowl restaurant in the Loft space at Arcade — the hotly anticipated “food theatre” that opened at Centre Point in central London last summer. It's definitely worth a look and you'll be able to pick up dessert there too.
We can't help thinking James May might have something to say about the interpretation of the classic egg mayo sandwich, also on the menu at TÓU.
Sons + Daughters
With only six sandwiches on a menu entitled, "Sandwiches" there should be no confusion about what's going to land on your table at Sons and Daughters (potential spoiler alert: sides of pickles and fries), which opened in Coals Drop Yard, in London's Kings Cross in October.
Don't expect bland sarnies. The menu may be simple, but the sandwich fillings are not. Take roasted Swaledale chicken, soy cured parmesan, pickled cucumber, gem lettuce, miso mayo, green sauce, wasabi cress on a white bloomer, masquerading as a "chicken sandwich".
James Ramsden and Sam Herlihy who are behind popular London foodie bolthole Pidgin are behind this place too, and describe it as: "a sandwich, soft serve, craft beer and cocktail shop."
We recommend the "Merguez S+Dwich" a spicy sausage baguette, with french fries (note: as a filling, not on the side) and topped with pink pickled onions. Knockout tasty.
The restaurant also offers up a take on the egg salad sandwich served with miso mayo and truffle crisps (also tucked inside). If it ain't broke, don't fix it.
Ok we get it. This one is a little off-piste, but what is a sandwich anyway? According to the Oxford English Dictionary (yes we did) a sadwnich is: "an item of food consisting of two pieces of bread with a filling between them, eaten as a light meal". All boxes ticked here.
While there isn't a name for this indulgent beaut on the menu, it's simply described as "Brioche, pistachio ice cream, bitter chocolate sauce," you'll find it a new Italian restaurant Norma, which is located in Fitzrovia and opened in November to rave reviews. It's building a solid reputation for its deliciously authentic Sicilian cuisine. They had us at "Brioche, pistachio ice cream..."
@bao_london repost @bestlondonfood
Falling somewhere between Taiwanese bun slinging joint and high-end restaurant, Bao Borough opened in August and serves up the authentic Taiwanese Bao bun at its London best.
The wildly popular bun purveyors from Soho and Fitzrovia, opened a third restaurant on the edge of Borough market in May and it's been teeming since.
Did we mention there's an onsite karaoke TV party room?
The busy market location is perfect for Bao Borough's grab-and-go service from the hatch at the front of the restaurant, which also serves night noodles from 9.30pm as well as its buns.
Co-founder, Shing Tat Chung said at the time of opening: “Whilst always serving signature BAO buns, each and every BAO restaurant focuses on offering unique interpretations of experiences inspired by Asian culture.” A bite of the short rib will make your year. It's a bun deal.
Don't be fooled by the side of chips, this is not a burger. It's a fillet steak sandwich on brioche and it's making our mouths water right this minute.
We know "provisioner" means to provide or supply something, especially food and this restaurant offers such nurturing sentiments combined with high-end vibes and service.
"Unpretentious dishes that play to the seasons, locally sourced and expertly put together. Think grilled fish, seasonal vegetables and classic home comforts," so says the website. This steak on brioche is like a saggy old armchair of a sandwich. We want it every day.
It opened back in January as the new restaurant at The Dixon boutique hotel in Tower Bridge. Provisioners is the latest project by Clive Watson of Blixen, Lorne and previously of Village East, The Garrison and London favourite, Riding House Café. Expect good eggs here too.