A foodie revolution is blowing through the Barbican Centre. Two dramatic new dining spaces will open in September completely upgrading the in-house eating experience for performance goers, residents and anyone in or around the City.
The Barbican Foodhall will offer an amazing selection of foods to buy or consume at the counter-top bars and the deli-tables. Guests can buy anything from an Italian ham and parmesan sandwich to shrimp pad thai with grilled coconut relish. Upstairs the Barbican Lounge will feature small plate menus based on dairy, meat, fish, fowl, vegetarian or pudding as well as gourmet bar snacks such as steamed endamame or pepperabica peppers stuffed with feta and Greek country cheeses.
General Manager Nikki Woods (ex-Maze), describes the venture as: “A haven for foodies. The concept is to create a destination for people who have a genuine love of food. Our menu is filled with moreish small plates, so guests no longer have to suffer food envy or make any difficult decisions. You can try a little bit of everything…and then just order a little bit more if you fancy!”
“We’re really excited about the transformation of our food offering” commented MD of Barbican Centre, Sir Nicholas Kenyon. “The spaces are being stripped right back to the original wall textures and fittings, so it really feels like a natural and organic development of our iconic centre. We’re confident regular visitors to the centre will enjoy the new experience and that this transformation will also help to introduce new people to the area.”
The gastronomic experience will be located on the lively waterside and begins on Level G with the Barbican Foodhall.
Eat your way around the world in a spectacular street food market (open seven days a week) overflowing with stimulating and surprising ingredients, deli-tables, counter-top service, a restaurant and book bank!
Walk in past floor to ceiling displays of the finest produce – including succulent and juicy olives courtesy of Olives Et Al, organic oils from the world’s premiere producers, award winning cheeses, chutneys, relishes and pastas, plus smoked salmon from one of the most prestigious producers in the UK, Severn & Wye Smokery and luxury confectionery from ‘best of British’ sweetie inventors, Hope & Green.
Be tempted by an intriguing choice of food stalls selling Cornish pasties with Branston pickle, marjoram infused mackerel, fennel, glazed damsons and goats cheese pie and New Orleans shrimp étouffée, all of which visitors can buy to eat in or to take away.
The restaurant – which seats 200 – is an ideal place to meet friends in an informal, buzzing atmosphere where resident chefs will conjure up a different menu every day, depending on what makes their taste buds tingle that morning! Prices start from £7 for a main course.
If a good cuppa, spiced apple crumble slice and a flick through the latest novel is more your scene, then pop by the Book Bank to buy, borrow or bring back books.
For those wanting something a little more formal, head upstairs to the Barbican Lounge.
Some of the world’s finest designers have combined to create a funky but comfortable 230-cover space described by Director of Operations Nick Rudlin as having a, “Prisoner meets Mad Men feel. Think mid-century Scandinavian furniture overlooked by unique light installations by Beirut designers PSLab encapsulated within the stripped fossilised concrete walls of the Barbican”.
Both bar and restaurant walk out onto a stylish terrace area featuring seating pods interspersed with seasonal plants designed by three time RHS Chelsea Flower Show winner, Kate Gould. The terrace stretches along the Barbican lakeside, providing wonderful views of the complex itself and beyond to London old and new. The mouthwatering feast continues with small plate dishes from pork pie and Garlic Farm relish and Lochmuir salmon, to Merguez sausages with saffron aioli and pissaladière with anchovies and olives.
For those wanting a quick feast the Barbican Lounge will be offering a Dine & Dash menu where they guarantee you’ll be out of the door in 50 minutes, or your money back.
Diners who have a little longer to spare could spend some quality time at the Barbican Lounge bar which will feature London’s first Macaroon Mixologist, where the legendary French delicacies are twinned with a range of new and traditional cocktails.
The Barbican Food Hall and Barbican Lounge will open their doors on 14 September.