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Anna Hansen launches the Chef Season at Benares bar

Hot Dinners popped down to Mayfair this week for the launch of the Chef Season during which a number of top chefs will join forces with Atul Kochhar to come up with a new fusion bar menu for Atul's Mayfair spot Benares every month.

The first chef to take part is The Modern Pantry's Anna Hansen, who when we met her was still flushed from her trip to Buckingham Palace to pick her up her MBE. "I…

Read more: Anna Hansen launches the Chef Season at Benares bar

Retro vegetarian fare - we test drive Orchard in Holborn

We try out the new vegetarian restaurant from the people behind Vanilla Black, Orchard in Holborn, and see what the team can do when they step away from their fine dining original.…

Read more: Retro vegetarian fare - we test drive Orchard in Holborn

Luxury cinema with Rowley Leigh food - we test drive the Lounge

We head to the Odeon at Whiteleys in Bayswater to check out their brand new luxury cinema, with food created by Rowley Leigh.  Can fine dining and film watching go well together?…

Read more: Luxury cinema with Rowley Leigh food - we test drive the Lounge

Skye Gyngell leaves Petersham calling Michelin a curse

There's a fascinating piece in Sydney newspaper The Age, published this weekend, in which Petersham Nurseries head chef Skye Gyngell gives her then-PR team a headache by calling the Michelin star she won last year 'a curse'.

Gyngell who just days before the Age piece was published, announced that she was leaving Petersham (to be replaced by Melbourne chef Greg Malouf), talks frankly about the expe…

Read more: Skye Gyngell leaves Petersham calling Michelin a curse

Michelin starred Quilon to reopen after refurb in March

Michelin starred Indian restaurant Quilon in Westmister, which has been shut for a major reburbishment, is due to reopen at the end of March. Hot Dinners got a few scraps of info on the impending re-opening when we chatted to chef Sriram Aylur recently.

Both Quilon and Bombay Brasserie are owned by Taj Hotels, with Sriram responsible for both restaurants - he's now entering his twenty-fourth…

Read more: Michelin starred Quilon to reopen after refurb in March

Benares Bar to launch special menus from Corrigan, Hansen and more

Atul Kochhar's recently been teaming up with Richard Corrigan in his restaurant and now Corrigan is returning the favour and joining others in to take part in a celebrity chef mash-up at Kochhar's own Benares bar.

Starting from February 21, the bar is launching a series of small plate menus that will see a number of chefs taking the ingredients and spices that Kochhar is best known for and creatin…

Read more: Benares Bar to launch special menus from Corrigan, Hansen and more

Meat Liquor to launch follow up Meat Market in Covent Garden

UPDATE - we went to Meatmarket, check out pics and more.

Meat Liquor has been one of the biggest hits of the past few months with rave reviews, queues around the block and quite possibly the best burgers in London. So the news of a follow up, after weeks of rumours, comes as no surprise.

Meat Market is to launch in Covent Garden in early May inside Jubilee Market Hall.  You can expect the us…

Read more: Meat Liquor to launch follow up Meat Market in Covent Garden

Ledbury chef James Knappett dinner at the Ten Bells

Question: what's more exciting than a meal out with our favourite Young Turks chefs at the Ten Bells? Answer; that'll be dinner with the Young Turks and the new Ledbury head chef James Knappett. You're the very first people to hear about a special collaborative dinner that's taking place on the Ten Bells on Saturday 25th February.

Bookings for 'Knappett Saturday' are being taken from 11am this Thu…

Read more: Ledbury chef James Knappett dinner at the Ten Bells

Jeremy Lee conquers Soho - test driving Quo Vadis

What can you tell me about Quo Vadis?

TV and film folk, media luvvies, foodies of all shapes and sizes all congregate here - Quo Vadis is a venerable canteen for Soho's movers and shakers that's been a restaurant since 1926 and was the former home of Karl Marx. Between 1996 and 2007 it was co-owned by Marco Pierre White and Damian Hirst, and then by White alone before ending up in hands of Sam an…

Read more: Jeremy Lee conquers Soho - test driving Quo Vadis

Jamie Oliver's empire expansion continues apace with the news this morning that he's opening a one-off cafe at Gatwick alongside a Jamie’s Italian and a standalone Union Jacks Bar.

The cafe, which will open in the airport's North Terminal this June, will be called Jamie’s Italian Bakery - exclusively designed for Gatwick. It'll serve up a variety of takeaway fresh pizza, brownies and salads.

Charl…

Read more: Jamie Oliver to open new bakery and Union Jacks bar at Gatwick airport

The Queen, Camilla and Kate to take tea at Fortnum & Mason

You've got to hand it to Fortnum & Mason; the Piccadilly store has scored a tremendous coup in getting the Queen to make a rare public appearance with her granddaughter-in-law, the Duchess of Cambridge, whilst taking tea under their roof.

We hear that Her Majesty will be in Piccadilly on 1 March 2012 with both her daughter-in-law, Camilla and Kate to try out the department store's newer restau…

Read more: The Queen, Camilla and Kate to take tea at Fortnum & Mason

Tom & Ed Martin launch their tenth pub, the Jugged Hare, on Chiswell Street

They've had success only just up the road with the Chiswell Street Dining Rooms and now the Martin Brothers are opening their 10th London pub nearby - the Jugged Hare.

The restored grade II building is a gastropub with a dining area and has an open kitchen with rotiserrie and charcoal grilled food the focus.  Head Chef Richard O’Connell plans a seasonal menu and as the pub will be open on Sun…

Read more: Tom & Ed Martin launch their tenth pub, the Jugged Hare, on Chiswell Street

Peruvian cuisine and Pisco Sours come to Soho with Ceviche

[Updated 13/02/12- Ceviche will open on 12 March at 17 Frith St in Soho]

One of the biggest trends for next year promises to be Peruvian food - so there's a lot of people looking forward to restaurateur Martin Morales and chef Alejandro Bello's Ceviche, which opens March 2012.

The restaurant will, of course, focus on ceviche - freshly caught sustainable fish cold-cooked in Tiger’s Milk marinade ma…

Read more: Peruvian cuisine and Pisco Sours come to Soho with Ceviche

London’s flagship Cordon Bleu school launches

Earlier this week, Hot Dinners popped along to the launch of the London International flagship Le Cordon Bleu School, taking up its grand new residence in Bloomsbury Square.

Visitors were treated to a Willy Wonka affair for grown-ups with a ticket to access all areas across five floors and six training kitchens, in the new venue, which has capacity for up to 700 students – double the intake amount…

Read more: London’s flagship Cordon Bleu school launches

After losing its head chef Tristan Welch who's moved to spend more time with his family in Sweden, Launceston Place has a new face in the kitchen, Timothy Allen.

Allen has spent the past seven years working at the two Michelin starred Whatley Manor in the Cotswolds.

Already busy working on his new menu for Launceston Place, the Yorkshireman has a first-rate background. Before his work at Whatley M…

Read more: Launceston Place gets a new head chef

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