New openings round-up

Bar + Block, Five Guys, Honest Burgers, Rosa's Thai Café and JD Wetherspoon are a few of this week's new openings.

Whitbread’s new upmarket steakhouse brand Bar + Block will open its ninth restaurant on King Street in Bristol next Tuesday (23 April), and a tenth in Belfast’s Cathedral Quarter the next day. Both will open for breakfast as well as lunch and dinner.

Honest Burgers opened its latest new restaurant on Bridge Street in Manchester this week. It is in a unit previously occupied by the Garage bar, alongside brands including Dishoom and Crazy Pedro’s. The site will host a pop-up taproom from local brewery Runaway at weekends, and also has a roof terrace.

Wine bar and restaurant brand Vinoteca has set out plans for its first opening outside London—at the Paradise development in Birmingham. The 3,400 square feet operation will open in early 2020. Vinoteca already has five locations in London, in the City, King’s Cross, Farringdon, Marylebone and Chiswick.

Five Guys has confirmed plans to open a new restaurant on Portobello Road in July. It brings Five Guys closer to the milestone of 100 restaurants after a rapid roll-out of the brand in the UK.

Rosa’s Thai Café has set 4 May for the opening of its new restaurant in Trinity Leeds shopping centre. It will be the 17th location in all, and a second outside London after a Liverpool launch earlier this year.

US-based fast-casual concept Eggslut is to launch a first UK site on Portobello Road in the summer. The brand was founded as a food truck operation in Los Angeles in 2011, and now has five locations in the US, plus one in Beirut.

The Restaurant Group has submitted plans to turn its Garfunkel’s restaurant in Bath into a branch of its Brunning & Price pub group. The plans for the conversion have encountered some local opposition.

Cock ‘n’ Bull, an American diner-style operation in Stourbridge set up by Jason Green and David Salmon, former managing directors of Chiquito and Frankie & Benny’s at The Restaurant Group, is opening a second location shortly at the Mulberry Walk development in Mere Green near Sutton Coldfield. It will open all day from breakfast and specialise in burgers and fried chicken.

Jason Atherton and The Social Company are to launch a new concept called No 5 Social on the site of their Little Social restaurant in Mayfair. The group operates seven restaurants and bar in London in all, and several more internationally.

Coffeeshop and restaurant operator Jamaica Blue opened this week within Next’s store at Birmingham’s Junction 9 Retail Park. More concession openings between the two are planned. Jamaica Blue already has sites in Cambridge, Chelmsford, Rushden Lakes and the University of Northampton.

TRG Concessions has launched a new on-the-go concept called the Station Pantry at London’s St Pancras Eurostar station. The 1,400 square feet unit is in the departure lounge.

Monsieur Le Duck, a pop-up Gascon-style concept that has been based so far in Spitalfields, is to open a permanent site on Clerkenwell Road in early May.

JD Wetherspoon has submitted an application to open a 26-room hotel alongside its Mile Castle pub in Newcastle.

The Ale Rooms in Knowle in the West Midlands has opened a second site in Kenilworth.

Farm-to-fork restaurant concept Farmer J is to open a new standalone bar within its King William Street branch, called The Shouk. Farmer J runs two other London restaurants, on Leadenhall Street and Canada Place.

Craft Union Pub Company, part of the Ei Managed Operations group, has reached the milestone of a 300th pub opening: The Tivoli Tavern in Grimsby. It launched last week after a £130,000 refurb. Craft Union opened its first pub in May 2015, and around half of its operators have joined the pub company from Ei Publican Partnerships, the leased and tenanted division of Ei Group.

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