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LAUNCH PAD [ new openings + refits ]

Bar + Block

a 68-cover central feature bar with copper detailing, a large open kitchen, branded mosaic signage at the entrance and a mix of stand-alone seating and leather booths. Exposed brick walls showcase a number of contemporary artwork pieces including their signature neon cow signage and preserved moss ‘Hello’ sign, as well as wall calligraphy detailing the Bar + Block brand story. Tis new Whitbread concept is an all-day


dining venue serving breakfast, lunch and dinner with an emphasis on high quality steaks at affordable prices all hand-cut to order. Te ‘Butcher’s Block’ features a range of rotating specials. Bar + Block also offers an extensive drinks list, with a focus on craft beers and ciders from Brew Dog, innovative cocktails and a specially curated wine list. Te concept and design is very much ‘on-

trend’. It is a multi-functional space that evolves throughout the day, gradually morphing from a

ormerly an unexciting bar and restaurant adjoined to the Premier Inn, this 5,522 square-foot space has been re-invented and re-developed by Harrison Design, and includes

brightly lit breakfast and coffee space through to an atmospheric late night bar and restaurant. Cleverly designed furniture transforms counters into dining tables, serving hatches are shuttered off when not in use and versatile lighting helps to create totally differing moods within the same venue. Harrison’s Creative Director, Kevin Grima,

refers to the space as real. “Tere are no corners cut here, no cheap materials, no plastic” says Kevin. “We wanted to create a steakhouse that feels raw and real, with quality wood tables, a copper bar, a genuine butchers block. Tere is a masculinity to that so we’ve softened parts of the bar and restaurant with fabric and colour, comfortable seating and warm lighting. Ultimately it’s a space that people can engage in, feel comfortable in and want to return to.” David Murdin, Chief Operating Officer of

Brand Developments for Whitbread Restaurants commented: “We’re very excited to be launching our flagship site in London following its success in Birmingham. We’re keen to develop the brand further, and aim to have several venues open by the end of this financial year. Bar + Block fills a real gap on the high street as it offers

high quality steaks at affordable prices in a relaxed, contemporary environment. Coupled with a fantastic feature bar, it’s the perfect mix of an all day dining restaurant and destination bar.” So does this mark the beginning of the end for Whitbread’s existing Beefeater brand? “Whitbread’s newest steakhouse Bar + Block has removed the reference to Beefeater from its core name to highlight Bar + Block’s individual identity, differentiating the concept from its sister brand. Beefeater will continue to expand and evolve as a brand, with further openings planned over the next 12 months” concludes David.

Bar + Block Steakhouse, 26-30 York Way, London N1

GS Magazine 11

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