Autumn 2011 Issue 13 of your FREE guide to everything that is anything in Covent Garden cgjournal.co.uk
COVENT GARDEN Journal
‘Meat!’ at the Strand Carvery; enjoy scrumptious traditional roasts and delicious seafood starters. Perfectly nestled between Covent Garden and the Strand we are an ideal restaurant for fun days out in London or friends and family gatherings. Johnston’s ‘off ’ the Strand, our long running establishment in the heart of Theatreland, offering contemporary British food with unbelievably good value pre-theatre menus, in addition to an inventive a la carte menu and extensive wine list.
For more information, please contact our Food & Beverage department: t: 020 7497 4158 | e: firstname.lastname@example.org Strand Palace Hotel 372 Strand, London WC2R 0JJ
Autumn 2011 Issue 13 of your FREE guide to everything that is anything in Covent Garden cgjournal.co.uk
02 58 04 08 30 42 54 EDITOR’S LETTER
04—Operating theatres Behind the scenes at the Theatres Trust.
08—The importance of being agnès agnès b on the cities and centuries that inspire her clothes .
30—Cook’s privilege The head chef putting the beef back into the Savoy Grill.
42—World records Andrew Scriven, photographer, adventurer and the Apple Market’s window on the world.
54—The Roxy Club In 1977, for 100 nights only, a cramped basement in Neal Street played host to some of punk’s most defining(ly dirty) bands. Mark Riddaway shines a light on the glory days of the Roxy Club.
12—Dressed up CGJ‘s illustrated guide to dressing to impress in Seven Dials.
34—My food life Head pastry chef of Ladurée, Vincent Lemain.
18—Wax on, wax off Ian Bergin, head of menswear at Barbour.
36—Cold comfort Gelato doesn’t come more genuine than Gelatorino’s.
20—Luck of the draw How the tenant of a new pop up shop in Seven Dials was left to chance.
38—Open season The owner of MD’s opens up about his sandwiches.
22—Avoiding the scrum Ralph Lauren’s range for the game played by gentlemen. 24—Creating a buzz Neal’s Yard Remedies’ Bee Lovely campaign. 24—Expert eye Age, its effect on the skin and when to fight it. 28—Circus Kitty Bang Bang performs for CGJ.
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40—Tart with a heart Bill’s recipe for treacle tart. 41—5 of the best Coffees.
46—Dover soul Tim Matthews, the Dover Bookshop and the unlimited possibilities of books without words. 48—Guilty conscience John Osbourne puts marriage and middle age in the dock. 49—Made for two Audiences go half crazy for Driving Miss Daisy. 50—Designed, sealed, delivered London Design Festival. 52—Exhibit Forthcoming exhibitions.
Useful websites coventgardenlondonuk.com operaquarter.co.uk sevendials.co.uk stmartinscourtyard.com
EDITOR’S LETTER /Mark Riddaway
It is becoming increasingly hard to imagine Covent Garden as a neglected wasteland of empty buildings, seedy bars and edgy underground culture. But in 1977, when London’s punk scene exploded into life in a Neal Street basement, that is precisely what it was. Our piece about the Roxy Club is a compelling one in its own right, but the contrasts with the rest of this issue’s content are as fascinating as the story itself. One thing is for sure —in the late 1970s, upmarket French swimwear designers, American fashion royalty and world class chefs were hardly falling over each other to find space in WC2. In fact, the Roxy Club was able to thrive precisely because Covent Garden was such an empty and neglected area, one in which gaggles of punks could kick cider cans down the street in the early hours while disturbing nobody but a few hundred sleep-deprived local residents. Now the area is right in the pulsing heart of central London, buzzing with activity and brimming with the wonderful food, arts and fashion that give purpose to this magazine. Some of those old punks are probably still here, drinking hedgerow fizz in Bill’s and buying clothes from Unconditional. But the idea that a thousand spittle-flecked young anarchists and anti-Christs once found their natural home in Covent Garden feels almost surreal. The Covent Garden of 2011 has many faces, but spotty, gurning, speed-fuelled nihilism probably isn’t one of them. 04 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
Editor Mark Riddaway 020 7401 7297 email@example.com Assistant editors Jean-Paul Aubin-Parvu 020 7401 7297 firstname.lastname@example.org Viel Richardson 020 7401 7297 email@example.com Clare Finney 020 7401 7297 firstname.lastname@example.org Advertising sales Donna Earrey 020 7401 2772 email@example.com Publisher LSC Publishing Unit 11 La Gare 51 Surrey Row London SE1 0BZ lscpublishing.com Contributers Holly Cox Joseph Fox Helen Graham Angela Holder Design and art direction Em-Project Limited 01892 614 346 firstname.lastname@example.org Distribution Letterbox Printing Cambrian NEXT ISSUE: November 2011
Designer of the Year, Winner Editor of the Year, Shortlisted
bEN FERN LOCATION TAVISTOCK STREET Why ARE yOU hERE? SHOPPING FOR A PHOTO SHOOT WhAT IS yOUR FAvOURITE COvENT GARDEN ShOP? KABIRI
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In the rich tapestry of Britainâ€™s dramatic tradition, the Theatres Trust on Charing Cross Road is the most important organisation youâ€™ve never heard of: helping new theatres and saving old ones from destruction. Clare Finney talks to their leading lady, director Mhora Samuel.
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OPErAting thEAtrEs I have always felt sorry for the backstage crew. Stuck waiting in the wings for all but the occasional scene change, they seem to carry out all of the graft while getting none of the glory. Instead of costumes, they wear black. Instead of delivering soliloquies they shift scenery. Worst of all they don’t even get a round of applause. So when I came across the Theatres Trust, the national advisory public body for theatres which effectively acts as the backstage crew behind theatre building, I assumed it would be the same— and it was only when I met Mhora that I began to think differently. “Did you know the Lyceum was the first theatre in London to be gas lit? Did you know the entrance to the Garrick stage is so narrow the Victorians had to roll up their sets to get them on?” Acknowledging that I didn’t know, I glance back at my questions. Yet Mhora, the former CEO of Cultural Industries Development Agency and the Theatres Trust director of five years, has only just started. “Did you know the Lyceum was first built in 1765? There’s been a theatre on that site since then. Of course, all the theatres here are quite old —the connection between Covent Garden and theatreland goes back centuries. That’s really why we’re here.” ‘Here’ is a friendly, bright looking office located along the busy Charing Cross Road. 05 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
It’s from here that Mhora’s team plan, advise and protect theatre buildings across the UK. “Our remit is nationwide,” Mhora affirms. “We have a statutory obligation to advise on any theatre development that occurs in Scotland, Wales or anywhere in England.” Being in London—specifically Covent Garden—helps not only because so many theatres are here, but because by being based in theatreland “the trust is directly able to understand what’s going on in the world of theatre”. One example of that is in its research capacity, as a place where members of the public can come to find out a bit more about theatre buildings. “We get students from colleges, private researchers who might have a personal connection with a particular building, and we get loads of architects researching for projects,” Mhora says. When I first arrive at the office I am shown into the library which, along with a model of an Edinburgh theatre, is packed floor to ceiling with archives and books. Some of these are legal documents. Many concern themselves with the theory and importance of theatre. But by far and away the biggest subject group here is the building and architectural history of British theatre. It’s a big subject. “A theatre built in the Victorian times might have been reconfigured
by one architect at various times,” Mhora explains patiently, “and that’s before you get to all the more recent trends.” Curved balconies, for example, had to be supported by pillars until the cantilevering system of balconies made that unnecessary. Then came the cinema, and with it the desire to have the audience more flat onto the stage. “The shape and the form and the design develop continuously over the years,” Mhora says, “and people like to learn about that.” This takes us back to the Lyceum—the grand and surprisingly delicate building that stands so serenely above the bustle of Wellington Street. These days it is difficult to remember this theatre unembellished by huge posters of the Lion King, but a casual glance back at its history suggests there is far more to be discovered inside the Lyceum than Hakuna Matata. “Like many of the West End theatres the Lyceum has been redesigned a number of times since it was first built,” explains Mhora. “In fact what you see today on the outside is from a completely different architect and time period to the interior.” The outside’s façade and grand portico is Victorian and was built by Samuel Beazley— first in 1830, then again 34 years later after a fire. The inside, meanwhile, is a beautiful marriage of Bertie Crewe’s ornate rococo,
Theatres Trust 22 Charing Cross Road 020 7836 8591 theatrestrust.org.uk
When you enter a theatre, you want to feel that you’re being taken into a space where you know you will experience something really special. circa 1904, and Holohan Architects’ tasteful bid to restore the theatre to action later that century. “The Great London Council wanted to demolish the theatre, as well as the Vaudeville, Garrick, Adelphi and Duchess,” says Mhora. “That was in 1968.” Their rescue came after several campaign groups, banded together out of the area’s various acting troops, musicians and directors to oppose the plans. Yet as Mhora is keen to point out, it wasn’t just the theatres that would have suffered. “This was the same time when a huge campaign was raised to save Covent Garden Market, which was under threat from the GLC,” she says. Under their so-called ‘redevelopment’ proposals, Thomas Fowler’s grand market buildings were to be demolished and replaced with car parks and bypasses. “Thankfully Save London Theatres Company and Equity as well and many others basically said, ‘This is not on’, and the Lyceum was made a Grade II listed building. It was one of the first in that post-war redevelopment craze they had in the 1970s to be listed.” The Garrick and the Adelphi followed suit and theatreland as we now know it was saved (at least, as far as the actual buildings are concerned). The trust even managed 06 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
to secure income from the Lyceum, and later the Garrick, by being included as one of the freeholders after the GLC was disbanded—“a very good position to be in these days, what with organisations like ours being cut,” as Mhora points out. For the director and her team the very fact that massive landmark developments like Crossrail are still going ahead is proof of how vital the Theatres Trust’s work really is. “Already we’re set to lose the Astoria in the development,” Mhora warns, referring to the late and much lamented live music venue on Charing Cross Road, the closure of which was passionately but unsuccessfully opposed. “It will change the area round there as we know it.” The hundreds of successful rescues the trust has carried out would not have been possible were it not for a certain David Crouch MP, who in 1976 put forward a bill demanding that local authorities inform the trust of any development plans involving theatres. In part this has been a way of enabling the trust to provide advice and assistance— like when the Royal Opera House made the dramatic but ultimately sensible decision to relocate its painted floor. More importantly, however, this statutory process acts as an alarm bell for those theatres which might be
at risk. As Mhora wistfully points out, “not all theatre owners are friendly”. The threat of Westfield number 7 never leaves. And while the events of last century mean theatres in Covent Garden are pretty well valued, there is no denying the need for a watchful eye should the dreaded words “planning notice” appear. All of which begs my final question: what makes a successful theatre? Is it the cosy intimacy of the Donmar? The super size of the Lyceum? Or the Royal Opera House’s echoic glass halls? Strangely enough, Mhora says, the answer is neither: it’s about “taking you out of yourself”. “You have two things with a theatre: the building, and what goes on in it. So when you enter a theatre, you want to feel that you’re being taken into a space where you know you will experience something really special. But then, when you’re in the auditorium, I think a really good theatre is one which doesn’t distract you from what’s happening on stage.” At that point, it seems, the very best theatres are those that can take you anywhere at all.
Seven Dials, Covent Gardenâ€™s only village, brings you seven streets of independent boutiques, heritage brands, vintage stores and indulgent beauty & grooming salons. All carefully selected for shoppers of discerning taste. The Seven Dials village is also home to food & drink from across the globe; from traditional English pubs & bustling cafĂŠs to five-star brasseries & restaurants, the area has something to cater for all. sevendials.co.uk
Look once at the clothes in agnès b’s new autumn collection and you could be forgiven for thinking the hands of time had rewound straight back to the French Revolution. Trench coats, cord trousers, regulation-style black—even the angle that hats and berets are perched out shout “Vive la revolution!” Look twice, however, and you will start to realise that while the 18th century has plenty to say in her work, there is a lot more to the designer’s approach to couture than re-writing history. For one thing there’s photography: her hobby and her passion as well as a key influence on many of her designs. Skirts and scarves are plastered with snapshots she’s taken while roaming the streets of Paris—even her boutiques have become platforms for exhibiting and supporting upcoming photographers she admires— and her collection of modern photography is the envy of many a curator. Then there’s the philanthropy, the environmentalism, 08 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
the fight against AIDS, and the small matter of owning Love Streams, a film production company that has made films with leading directors Gasper Noé and Claire Denis. A few years ago, when asked for the secret of her success, agnès quipped (somewhat controversially for a designer): “Fashion doesn’t interest me. Only style.” Now, with the stage set for her new store on Floral Street, CGJ sets out to discover just what sort of revolutionary she is. CGJ: There seems to be more than a touch of history behind your latest collections. Can you cite some of your main influences? ab: The last show for Homme, was influenced by a book I fell upon of Pierro Della Francesa’s frescos. This inspired the form of tunics, robes, and linen sarouel pants in colours that evoke the Italian Renaissance frescos. For the women’s 2011 winter collection one my main inspirations was the French
Revolution. There are also other sources of influence, such as the photos that I take around the world that are screen printed onto dresses, skirts and bags. Why do you think the quintessentially French style has such an international market? The French style is real. France has a tradition of taste and cut. That style is associated with French elegance. Paris and the image of Parisians turns the whole world on. France also boasts an extraordinary expertise. London and the English style bring more fantasy and dandyism. Do you have a muse for any of your collections, or a specific person in mind when you design? I am inspired by people in the street and all around me. Sometimes for the collections I have a particular character in mind, who might be an actor or heroine from French
ThE ImporTancE oF bEIng agnès
agnès b—the grande dame of French fashion—talks to Clare Finney about 18th century coats, artistic inspiration and milky tea.
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1960s films—like Anna Karina in Jean Luc Godard’s films, for example. As a designer with global influence, do you wish to broaden your horizons beyond clothes and accessories? What about extending your design skills to the home department? I have a gallery in Paris where I recently showed the works of Jonas Mekas. I also have the artists’ paper, ‘Point d’ironie’ that I give away in the stores, giving carte blanche to the artist. Past contributors have been Gilbert & George and Damien Hirst. Film is also a big passion of mine, and that’s how my production company came about, Love Streams. I also try to raise public awareness about humanitarian issues and the environment: firstly with Tara, the sailing schooner that studies global warming around the world, and also with selling not for profit products in store to support worldwide charities, as well as giving away
ThE ImporTancE oF bEIng agnĂ¨s
condoms in store to help the fight against Aids... and yes, one day I also hope to launch lifestyle and homewares! Given your abiding interest in photography, do you have any favourite photographers in particular? I am interested in a lot of photographers. In particular in New York where I am exhibiting young French photographers in my Howard Street boutique-gallery: Luna Picoli-Truffaut, Marc Cellier, Claudia Imbert, Nicolas Dhervilliers, Claire Adelfang, Matthias Olmeta and Leonard Bourgois-Beaulieu A few years ago you said you would like to make a film. Are you any closer to fulfilling that dream? For the moment that project is on hold but I am sure that one day it will become a reality. What is your favourite period in history? The 18th century. Its influence can be 10 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
observed in many of my collections, such as the 18th century coats for men. I grew up in Versailles where I took great inspiration from the pure lines of the classic gardens and palaces. How do you balance the need to produce a coherent collection with your core belief that each customer should express their personality? I like to make clothes that you can play with easily. Clothes that you can wear day and night. Clothes you can dress up or down. I work on shapes, details and prints (always exclusive) and I am always thinking about the feel of fabrics. I always want to please people wearing my designs! Mine are simple clothes, remarkable in their simplicity and the fact there is almost no design. It is the way they are mixed that creates the style of the wearer, and that affirms his own personality and not mine.
LIFE agnès b 35-36 Floral Street 020 7379 1992 agnesb.com
The French style is real. France has a tradition of taste and cut. That style is associated with French elegance. Paris and the image of Parisians turns the whole world on. France also boasts an extraordinary expertise. London and the English style bring more fantasy and dandyism.
Do you think your own personal style has changed much over the years? My style has not really changed over the years. I always wear agnès b—it’s timeless! You have said in the past that you don’t consider yourself as an artist—but do you think the people who wear your clothes could be said to be artists in the way they wear and combine them? Everyone has their own way of expressing themselves in my clothes. I make clothes to be worn and not to wear you. What is interesting is the way people remain themselves and do not just wear labels. What do you love to do in London? I adore Spitalfields. St John restaurant, Borough Market and Folgate Street are inspirational to me, and I also love Covent Garden, the cobbled streets and discovering new places. I love British traditions too, like fish and chips and milky tea.
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Asymmetrcal laddered knitted t-shirt in white —Unconditional, £135 Coral Line necklace —Laura Lee, £160 Key necklace —Laura Lee £70 Wishbone necklace —Laura Lee £150 Roses —Covent Garden Academy of Flowers
If the cliché is correct and you should say it with flowers, then the man behind this 20-strong bunch of red roses from the Covent Garden Academy of Flowers is off to a good start. Inside, a handwritten note removes all traces of doubt: this is indeed a romantic invitation, to a date at the luxury five star Mercer Street Hotel—newly refurbished and perfectly located in the beating heart of Seven Dials. All this lucky lady need do is to look gorgeous Fortunately in the sartorial nexus that is Seven Dials this has never been easier. From Orla Kiely, to Laura Lee, to the wonderful Fifi Wilson, there is an outfit and a matching accessory for every step of a romantic dinner date—be it lounging in rollers, musing over handbags, or dazzling on a bar stool, drink in hand. A good heart may be hard to find these days, but a good outfit is just around the corner.
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Ash Rose frill leather Margot bag —Orla Kiely, £385 Kelp Turnlock leather Rosemary bag —Orla Kiely, £350 Repetto shoes —Poste Mistress, £165
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Big Bird woven silk sleeveless dress —Orla Kiely, £365 Lattice stitch merino wool collar —Orla Kiely, £70
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Old Rose party dress 窶認ifi Wilson, ﾂ｣142.50
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Venue Radisson Edwardian Mercer Street Hotel 20 Mercer Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 4300 radissonedwardian.com/mercer Hair Karine Jackson 24 Litchfield Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 0300 karinejackson.co.uk Make up Angelina Howard Screen Face 48 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 3955 screenface.com Model Hanako Footman Premier Model Management 40-41 Parker Street premiermodelmanagement.com Stylist & photographer Holly Cox hollycox.co.uk
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wax on, /Ian Bergin, head of menswear at Barbour CGJ: While we’re speaking you are in China on business. Do you get to do much travelling around? IB: I do travel quite a bit, mainly to factories but also to visit agents, distributors and subsidiaries. While our traditional wax cotton jackets are made in our factory in South Shields, Barbour also produces clothes worldwide. We only work with the best manufacturers and I’m a firm believer in a hands-on approach to design and development, which is important for a brand as rooted in practicality and quality as Barbour.
What are you designing at the moment? The team is working up AW12. It’s a key collection for Barbour as much of the business is weighted in winter. We have a licence agreement with the Steve McQueen estate to reproduce key motorcycle styles from the Barbour Archive that Steve McQueen wore during the 1964 International Six Day Trials. We design a small collection to complement these pieces and that’s really good fun.
Any unexpected bestsellers? The Pendennis Jacket has proved to be a popular choice. It’s a classic Barbour style, updated with a photographic lining that shows the different items that have been found in the pockets of jackets returned to our factory for re-waxing or reproofing. These include a range of things from cash and shooting cartridges to keys for St James’ Palace!
How do you go about keeping things contemporary without straying too far from the brand’s heritage and tradition? We have a very strong brand signature that people recognize: wax, quilt, cord, studs, circular ring-pulls and house tartans. We can really experiment and innovate in fit and colour as long as we incorporate
Where do you look for inspiration and ideas? What drew you to Barbour, and what do you Barbour is a real product like about working there? of the north east, which I was drawn to the history and to the product. was built on shipbuilding, It’s a fifth generation family-owned business mining, fishing and and is intensely proud of its heritage and farming. The products north-eastern roots. The product at its we produce are core is true industrial design—developed traceable back to and constructed with real pride. A number the clothes that we of our jackets such as the Bedale or the provided for the Beaufort and the motorcycle International workers in the area jacket are real design icons. They couldn’t for generations. be produced by anyone else and even if you However we take the labels and branding away they are are looking to instantly recognisable. the future and constantly asking What is your favourite item from ourselves, if our this season? founder John The Beacon Heritage motorbike shirt. Barbour were It’s part of our Beacon Heritage range and alive today, takes inspiration directly from Barbour’s what would he archive. To Ki To Yoshida collaborates be designing? with Barbour for this collection, so it’s an We have moved interesting mix of traditional materials and into Gore-Tex and craftsmanship and avant-garde Japanese technical fabrics design. This particular jacket has lots of and these are hidden features that you only discover when great in presenting you start wearing it. I’d wear it with straight a new angle and brightly coloured chinos, suede chukkas interpretation of and a plain tee. our brand.
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LIFE Barbour 134 Long Acre, St Martins Courtyard 020 7240 5061 barbour.com
wax oFF some elements of these. That grounds us and makes our products look like Barbour. Fit is a key issue for us and we have a large range of ages and customers who want the same product, but fitted in different ways. Is it sometimes a challenge working with the materials Barbour uses like the waxed cotton and leather? I personally love wax and the way it ages and moulds itself around you. It develops a history of your life wearing the garment which is really attractive and the reason why nobody ever throws a Barbour away. In fact you could say we have 100 per cent recyclable jackets because they get re-waxed and worn and never get thrown away—just passed on. It’s really interesting to use these fabrics and wools, tweeds, quilting fabrics and treating and proofing them in different ways. Are you quite a country person yourself? What do you like to do in your spare time? I love being out in the country. I love running and walking in the fells and take regular advantage of our position by the sea, adjacent to Northumbria. Why do you think Barbour is so successful in cities given its rural heritage? I think Barbour’s attraction is rooted in its natural no-nonsense practicality. It’s about originality and adding value to people’s lives —I think it is called value-led consumption. In an increasingly technical and advanced working and living environment it is reassuring to buy into a product which is comforting. 19 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
LIFE In brIEF
Luck oF ThE Draw /The Seven Dials pop-up shop raffle
Seven Dials sevendials.co.uk
The champagne is flowing like it’s 1999. The polished windows wink in the evening sun. In one corner stands a table laden with bulging goodie bags. In another an unfailingly enthusiastic PR explains for the umpteenth time “what it’s all about”. It is, to all appearances, just another shop launching on Monmouth Street, Seven Dials, but for one small but significant detail: no one knows yet what shop it is. The retailer who will be occupying this pop-up shop later this year is going to be decided tonight via a raffle. It could be any one of the dozens of interesting and talented new operations nervously knocking back drinks and waiting for the draw. Could it be the ambitious owner of high-end Portobello womenswear store Zadig & Voltaire? Like many here, his story is one of trying to keep head and shoulders above the recessionary water while other brands went under and surviving via a mixture of “innovation, creativity, and tenacity – they’re all words I use,” he says wryly. By moving to Monmouth Street—if he moves to Monmouth Street—he hopes to start a new chapter of his enterprising venture, with new designers—“there’s been some great graduates recently”—and new creative projects in store with an illustrator and other collaborators. “This space is perfect for independents who might otherwise be pushed out by big brands,” he says, already wistful. “It’s perfect for someone like me.” Ollie, a designer from the subsidiary of Canterbury, Uglies, says otherwise. “After all we’ve said about big brands, I’m afraid I am part of one,” he smiles nervously. “But we’re a new lifestyle brand and we’re only a subsidiary.” He too thinks that the space would be perfect for a brand that doesn’t even have its own shop yet —but after a few beers and a bit of bonding the two have decided to make a deal. “If I win, I’ll have to split it with him, and I’ll have the vice versa if he wins,” explains 20 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
Mr Zadig & Voltaire. “Yep, that’s right,” grins Ollie,“although if I win, you’ll be in the basement.” Fortunately, at that opportune moment silence falls, as the chink-chink of a glass heralds the start of a speech by Clare Harris, from the unit’s landlords Shaftesbury. “The retail sector is fast-paced and changing, and the strongest are those who survive,” she begins, to knowing nods from the assembled retailers. “We wanted to be ahead of the game.” The solution, she and her colleagues decided, was to invest in a full rebrand for the area—but before they could do that, they needed “to hold up a mirror to Seven Dials” and find out exactly what it was that made it special. Along with its charm and village-like atmosphere, one of the most interesting qualities to shine back from the Seven Dials “reflection” was the area’s seemingly limitless capacity for quirkiness. And what could be quirkier than choosing your latest retailer via the medium of a lottery? And what could be more fitting than the winner being TOMS Shoes—a shoe shop that donates a pair of shoes to an Argentine child for every pair purchased? In 2006, American entrepeneur Blake Mycoskie visited Argentina, where he was deeply moved by the children he met who had no shoes to protect their feet. After founding TOMS, he returned to South America later that year with 10,000 pairs of shoes, and he has been going back with thousands more ever since. Now Seven Dials shoppers will be able to aid his campaign, and buy themselves some stylish and practical canvas shoes into the bargain. If there’s one thing Seven Dials can always be relied upon to offer, it is something extraordinary made by someone extraordinarily talented – and if pulling names out of a hat to decide on a new retailer doesn’t demonstrate that, then quite frankly we don’t know what does.
LIFE In brIEF
Braziliant In 2000, in the favelas of Rio de Janeiro, a boxing club called Pela Paz (Fight for Peace) was formed by Luke Dowdney in the hope that it would help make the city’s notoriously drug and gun riddled streets a little more safe. The focus of the Pela Paz was to find a positive outlet for young
avoIDIng ThE scrum
/Rugby Ralph Lauren Not content with redefining the world’s approach to polo shirts and sleeveless jackets, the legendary Ralph Lauren has turned his hand to another smart-casual sporting sub-genre: rugby. Not that Rugby Ralph Lauren has anything to do with actual rugby, of course—any more than Ralph Lauren Polo has to do with horses. You won’t find any knee high socks or mud-stained shorts here. Yet what the Rugby range lacks in sweaty brawn, it makes up for in sophistication, style and a far more youthful edge than the Polo collections. This season’s Rugby collection includes corduroy jackets, tweed flat caps, sturdy brown boots—and that’s just the girls. Complementing these elegantly-fitted feminine versions of classic menswear staples are a stunning array of floaty dresses, cable knit tunics and jazzy jumpers. These come in a range of charcoals, burgundies and mossy green—this being fall (autumn to you and me) and Ralph Lauren being nothing if not a traditionalist. Yet it is his designs for the Rugby menswear range that really come into their own. Drawing inspiration from vintage sport references, classic Ivy League, and a dash of the dandy, the line includes oxford shirts, chino pants, sweaters, suits—not to mention some red-blooded male versions of the authentic tweed sport-coats. First prize goes to the customisable rugby shirt, to be designed in-store using a wide range of felt badges and motifs. The men’s suede and leather brogues are a close runner up. Come September, the opening of Britain’s first Rugby store on King Street will bring all this Ivy League glamour to the original home of rugger, complete with corniced ceilings and library-style rooms. With polo and rugby attended to, we will wait and see whether the brand has any plans to take style inspiration from the rest of the great British sporting firmament— cricket, snooker, darts, cheese rolling. Over to you, Mr Lauren. 22 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
people by training in multi-sport combat and creating champions both in and out of the ring. Inspired by the mission of the club, Dowdney then established the LUTA clothing brand, selling “advanced performance fightwear and trainingwear designed by fighters for fighters and those who are serious about getting fighting fit”.
Rugby Ralph Lauren 43 King Street rugby.com
The brand, the name of which comes from the Portuguese for fight or struggle, has now opened a pop-up shop in the Thomas Neal Centre, complete with favela stylings and a micro-gym. Half the profits from the store go to Fight for Peace International. luta.co.uk
Fashion Fringe fashionfringe.co.uk
As a role model for budding young designers, Roland Mouret is a hard act to follow. After weathering more than 30 years on the high seas of fashion, he is credited with being the founder of the now-ubiquitous Galaxy dress, a leader of the Demi-Couture movement, and holds four awards (including British Designer of the Year 2004) and more nominations than his fellow panellist, Claudia Schiffer, has shoes. Then again, if you’re a style-savvy upstart looking to make it big in the fashion world, you’re probably not looking for an easy ride. As even the most cursory flick through glossy magazines will tell you, the industry of clothes is fast, fickle and devoted almost entirely to the dictates of a fortunate few. Perhaps this is why the man and the supermodel whose names write style pages have decided to sign up to the Fashion Fringe: a pioneering programme dedicated to furthering the careers of Britain’s most promising young designers. Since its inaugural catwalk show eight years ago, the project prides itself on having launched a bevy of successful designers onto the heady and hedonistic heights of London’s fashion scene. “I’m always thrilled, not only by the quality achieved by young talent, but that Fashion Fringe so vividly reflects that London is truly 23 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
an international city,” says Colin McDowell, the eminent fashion historian and journalist who founded Fashion Fringe when he felt a lack of support for young designers was putting the country’s reputation for cutting-edge fashion under threat. “People all over the world are excited by the idea of Fashion Fringe and see it as part of London, the most exciting city in the globe.” Also among the style-studded panel of industry experts judging this year’s entrants are Anne Pitcher, a buyer for Selfridges, and journalist Bel Jacobs from the Metro. Together with Roland and Claudia they have been whittling down the long list of young hopefuls since April, in preparation for the Fashion Fringe catwalk show in the first week of September. Expertly timed to coincide with London Fashion Week, the show is the culmination of months spent selecting, mentoring and funding the project’s three finalists: Fyodor Golan, Heidi Leung and Nabil El-Nayal. The hopefuls will parade their collections in front of the show’s judges; the winner will receive a two-year development package to set up and sustain their business, which includes a mixture of cash, business advice, mentoring and a fully equipped studio at Somerset House. Their first collection will debut at London Fashion Week next February.
LIFE In brIEF
Kiehl’s 29 Monmouth Street 020 7240 2411 kiehls.com
Kiehl’s 29 Monmouth Street 020 7240 2411 kiehls.com
Neal’s Yard Remedies 15 Neal’s Yard, Seven Dials 020 7379 7222 nealsyardremedies.com
crEaTIng a buzz /Neal’s Yard Remedies
pollinators would cost British agriculture up to £440 million a year as well as destroying our eco-systems and their animals. So it was something of a shock to NYR proprietor Peter Kindersley to discover that the chemical behind all this carnage is still in widespread use throughout the country. “Sam Roddick, environmental activist and the founder of Coco de Mer, came to Peter after her attention had been drawn to the 2018 figure,” explains Nicola, NYR’s Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it’s a bee-themed PR manager. “She pointed out all these Winnebago—or Winne-bee-go, to use the charities who were campaigning for the correct terminology—and it’s all part of prevention of this particular pesticide and Neal’s Yard Remedies’ new campaign to she said ‘There’s a real campaign here— raise awareness of the plight of our bees. let’s do something.’” Yes, bees: those small, flying busybodies That something turned out to be a with the stripes and the sting in their tails. nationwide campaign, complete with a In the past their arrival has heralded the new organic honey and orange hand cream, downfall of many a countryside picnic. part of the proceeds from which are Yet anyone who has been listening to the directed to charities BugLife, LandLife and buzz about bees in recent years will know Pesticide Action Network UK, a fact-packed that these humble insects are under a campaign book and a petition to ban the deadly threat. use of neonics: a type of powerful pesticide In America the number of bee colonies that penetrates plants and attacks the has fallen by 4 million in five years. nervous system of insects that feed off In Canada, Europe and India they’ve lost them. Bee supporters will be able to sign around 500,000. Were bees just a sweetthe petition either in person at NYR stores looking insect, this wouldn’t be such a or at the company’s website before it gets problem. Even if it just meant less honey marched to Downing Street in October with the chances are we’d survive. Yet with bee the winne-bee-go in tow. pollination accounting for one in every three “There’s a report, cited in the book, mouthfuls of food in Britain and 84 per cent about bees being the last canary in the of EU crops, the very real possibility that coalmine,” Nicola explains. “It was a they may be extinct by 2018 spells disaster, real wake up call for me when I first saw not just for farmers but for anyone whose it.” It is thanks to her efforts and those daily life contains any of the following: of their partnering charities that Neal’s flowers, fruit, cotton, chocolate. These are Yard Remedies has succeeded in forging just some of the at-risk items flagged up by a campaign that anyone can get stuck NYR in its campaign booklet. “Without bees into—whether they have beehives in their and wild pollinators agriculture as we know it back gardens or not. would collapse,” it explains, pointing out that in China, where the loss of bees has forced many communities to hand pollinate crops, the cost of production has gone up around eight times. In Britain losing our 24 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
Gillian Barclay of Khiel’s answers the dreaded question of when we should start using anti-ageing products and what we should start with. When thinking about anti-ageing, your first thoughts should always be towards protection—and with protection, it’s always good to start early. We now know that UVA rays can be responsible for up to 90% of premature skin ageing. Using a SPF product like Ultra Light Fluid UV Defense SPF 50 Release every day (even if the weather doesn’t seem that sunny) will be your first line of defence in maintaining a youthful skin. This can also minimise pigmentation differences that will be harder to correct later on. It is also important to protect the skin from chemical damage. Using products that have a high quantity of anti-oxidant ingredients, such as those from the Acacia range, will help to protect your skin, maintaining texture tone and radiance. As you mature there are also corrective measures you can take. Products with ingredients that encourage your skin to produce more high quality collagen and elastin will keep the skin firm and supple and maintain the natural contour of the face, plumping out the appearance of fine expression lines. Vitamin C is one such ingredient. It is key to the production of collagen—a protein that aids in the growth of cells and blood vessels and gives skin its firmness and strength —so products such as the Powerful Strength line are ideal. In all cases, whatever your age or your skin type, having a good routine in place is essential for defying the effects of time. Keeping the skin clean, balanced, and protected, using appropriate products, and getting good advice from your Kiehl’s representative will all assist with keeping younger looking skin for longer. But above all enjoy your skin.
LIFE Mountain range There ain’t no mountain high enough in Covent Garden–in fact, there ain’t no mountains at all. But if you thought that might deter a mountaineer from setting up a gear shop here, you will have underestimated their raw and steely
nerves. Latest to join the climbing party is the pioneering store of Patagonia, recently opened on the wild frontier of Great Langley Street. With over 30 year’s experience under their climbing belt, the brand is well placed to provide both climbers and other ‘silent sport’
enthusiasts–snowboarding, surfing, fly fishing, paddling and trail running–with simple but highly specialised gear–so if you do find yourself somewhere more vertiginous than Bedford Street you’ll be well prepared.
Vilebrequin 9 King Street vilebrequin.com
swImmIng agaInsT ThE TIDE /Vilebrequin
Famously, in some municipal swimming pools in France men are banned from swimming in anything other than snugly hugging Speedo-style swimming trunks of the type known affectionately by the Australians as “budgie smugglers”. The guardians of these pools often hold a stash of second hand trunks that can be hired out to any incorrectly attired man who’s comfortable wearing another bloke’s skimpy undercrackers. It is ironic, therefore, that any man dressed in the very finest France men’s swimwear label would be instantly turned back from many of the country’s pools. Vilebrequin, which was established in Saint-Tropez in 1971, during the glamorous heyday of the French Riviera, specialises in beautifully designed swimming shorts that are elegant enough to bring out the Riviera playboy in even the most pasty of British bathers, while being far too voluminous for French bathing police. Legend has it that the company’s founder Fred Pryskel was sitting outside the famous people-watching hot spot of Café Sénéquier when he cut up the chequered tablecloth to create a pattern for his very first pair of shorts. Since then the same combination of glamour, creativity and practicality has turned the brand into an international success story, with the shorts—some of them muted and tasteful, others bright and witty—finding genuine cross-generational appeal.
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LIFE In brIEF
Fine China You know a country is fast on its way to becoming a world power when it turns its hands from making clothes to designing them–particularly when, within a few years of doing so, these designs end up on a London catwalk. Yet this is China, a country whose prowess these days
goes largely undisputed–and as the Great Wall shows, it doesn’t do things by halves. Organised by the Shenzhen Garment Industry Association, Fashion Shenzen has become the creative arena for showcasing the country’s design and clothing manufacturing talent. Come the 19th September, visitors to the Covent
Garden exhibition will see outfits and designs from some of the country’s most promising designers–all worthy of the catwalk and all tagged with the soon-tobe-familiar label ‘Designed in China’.
Superga 53 Neal Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 6935 superga.co.uk
supEr TroopErs /Superga
The skirt is high and beautifully pleated. The sleeves are ruched, and the colour is gorgeous. But if you thought, from all this, that this picture was in any way about the dress, you’d be sorely mistaken. This is Superga, home of the casual shoes sitting comfortably to the right of the frame—and Alexa Chung, whose dainty pixie feet were seen sporting a pair at Glastonbury, is the brand’s ambassador. Billed as the ‘People’s Shoes of Italy’ the first Superga shop to arrive in Britain sits on Neal Street, heel-to-toe with some of the finest shoe retailers in London. Looking at this smart, minimalist store, it’s easy to forget the brand’s humble beginnings in Turin in 1911, taking its name from the famous hill on the outskirts of the city. There the company made its name by selling rubber-soled shoes and the signature ‘2750 Heritage’ style—a comfy canvas number that’s still one of its main best-sellers. Since then, the brand has evolved and expanded enormously, adding leather shoes, sandals and “this year’s alternative to Hunter wellies” (according to the Guardian) to the original vulcanized lines. Yet despite this global success, Superga has stayed true to the principles of simple elegance and style—as demonstrated in its white, uncluttered store, its choice of location and, as ever, its shoes. 26 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
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tenderproduct, in conjunction with the London Design Festival 2011, tenderproduct presents a new window exhibition by textile artist Sally Spinks, curated by Stella Sideli. Cold Comfort spreads throughout the shop, 6/5/09 12:24:17 including work on both floors. Imposing upon the space, Spinks' presence becomes invasive covering areas from floor to ceiling. However, as visitors peer through gaps of large knitted links, 'Construct' will continue to reveal additional elements; much like a magnifying glass traveling over a warm cozy jumper. Catching a glimpse of common objects in both an altered functionality and scale demonstrates the incongruity of everyday life. tenderproduct is a new shop showcasing the creations and wares of the most distinct emerging talent in Art and Design. ------------------------------------------------------------t e n d e r p r o d u c t is the sister space, and product store of TENDERPIXEL gallery. Located in central London, the shop is a stepping stone for emerging talent to showcase new products: from artists’ multiples and design objects & books to limited-print publications, we aim to create a platform for innovative objects shaping our contemporary visual culture. From landscape photographs to fantastic monsters, from coloured shapes on canvas to linocut ties, you will travel into different dimensions and encounter witty and humorous content. ------------------------------------------------------------BOTH SPACES ARE LOCATED IN CECIL COURT, LONDON, WC2N 4HE TENDERPRODUCT: TUES - SAT 10AM-6PM
| 02 07379 9464 | MAIL AT TENDERPRODUCT DOT COM
TENDERPIXEL: WED - SAT 1-7PM | 02 07379 9464 | MAIL AT TENDERPIXEL DOT COM
27 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
/Kitty Bang Bang, Performer at Circus
CGJ: Have you always been shy and retiring? KBB: I went to a convent school—which may explain a lot. When I was 11, one of the things we had to do was make up a dance. I had us all walk in dressed as nuns to lovely choir music, only to then strip down to denim hotpants and band t-shirts to Bon Jovi’s Living On A Prayer. My mother was told that I displayed inappropriate hip action for an 11-year-old, which annoyed her, because she’d spent all that money sending me to ballet. When did you start dancing? From about the age of three or four. Mum was keen to send me to ballet and I also did some gymnastics. I wanted to be a ballerina, but ripped a ligament in my leg during my teens and couldn’t dance for a few years. Then at university there was a lovely dance programme run by the Birmingham Royal Ballet and I got back into it. I started dancing again, doing bits and pieces of commercial work—music videos, the odd advert. How did you move into burlesque? A very good friend of mine was on the books of a modelling agency. Seven years ago she was approached to do the launch of a product. She called me, saying: “They want me to do a burlesque dance, but I don’t know what that is. I don’t dance and I’m really nervous. Will you help me out?” I did some research, came up with a routine and helped her go through it. We ended up doing the show together and I loved it. And I’ve done it ever since. Is burlesque simply glorified stripping? A lot of people level that accusation at burlesque. On one level there is a lot of striptease, and quite often performers don’t try to add other elements. But me and a lot of the people I work with try to stay true to the roots of burlesque, which is parody and comedy, the Vaudeville side of it, the slapstick—it’s not just a pretty girl taking off a pretty outfit to some music. There’s a narrative to much of what I do. I really try for it not just to be a striptease routine. Describe your shows. I’ve got lots of different ones. I tend to go for things that are quite traditional in burlesque, and then put a different slant or just do 28 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
Kitty Bang Bang kittybangbang.com
I’ve got a seven and a half foot custom chopper that I had sprayed with flames and my name. It’s my rock star prop, and it’s so loud. I rode it around the Roundhouse car park and set off loads of car alarms.
29 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
something funny with it. They’ve all got some sort of ridiculous twist to them. For example, my cat show—that’s my signature show. I dress as a cat. I’ve got this big ridiculous Marabou outfit and I’m covered in Swarovski, but it’s kind of subverted because I emerge from a huge wheelie bin. The bin is pushed on stage and I come out legs first. There are two different endings. I either do a fire show to Wild Thing or else I pour a gallon of milk over myself—slightly ridiculous. The Geisha show I also do with fire, and I’ve got dancers and we do a whole dance section together. Is playing with fire difficult to master? Fire isn’t desperately difficult to learn, it’s just quite dangerous—and it hurts. I’ve got a burn on my arm and another on my lip. You can never tell when you’re going to burn, because fire’s just such an unpredictable thing. Learning the tricks isn’t that difficult— but it’s actually quite difficult in terms of not setting fire to yourself. When you breathe fire you spit paraffin, which isn’t a good thing to have in your mouth. Swallowing paraffin can irreparably damage your lungs.
Circus 27-29 Endell Street 020 7420 9300 circus-london.co.uk
But it’s a nice little family here at Circus and we’re all really good friends. What types of acts appear at Circus? We have aerialists, contortionists, hoop performers, hand balancers, fire performers and a guy who does crystal ball manipulation—it’s like contact juggling —as if he’s manipulating it through space and time. We have two resident Circus dancers and a roaming host in top hat and fabulous make-up, who wanders round and chats to the guests. We also have two amazing burlesque performers called Fancy Chance and Laurie Hagan. You have performers swinging in hoops above the tables. Have any of them ever landed in somebody’s dinner? They would be horrified that you would ask that. Nobody has ever, ever done that. They are amazing. They can fly through the air and do flying trapeze, so a static hoop is nothing. Where has burlesque taken you? I’ve just come back from headlining Space in Ibiza and before that I was doing some shows in Sicily. My agent is Italian and so I go over to Italy all the time, which is fantastic, though I come back about 10 stone heavier. They always take me out for dinner and then, full of pasta, I have to go on stage in a tiny corset. This year I’ve been to Vegas, Spain, Paris, Finland—I probably go away two, three times a month, just for a few days at a time.
How long have you been at Circus? I joined Circus a couple of months after it opened and have been performing here for 18 months. Circus is a really good night out. You get a real mix of people and on Fridays and Saturdays it’s crazy, you can barely move. The cocktails are fantastic. They changed the menu recently and I’ve been working my way through them, just testing, in case anybody ever asks me what they’re like. We have people who come in just to soak up the atmosphere and have a few cocktails, but we also have all the diners. You can partake in the fun as much as you want or just sit in the corner, have dinner and watch. And we’re now starting to introduce more interactive elements.
Don’t you sometimes enter stage left on a motorcycle? I’ve got a seven and a half foot custom chopper that I had sprayed with flames and my name. I did Trash City at the Roundhouse and got to ride it around the venue and then up onto the stage. It’s my rock star prop, and it’s so loud. I rode it around the Roundhouse car park and set off loads of car alarms.
Don’t you also programme the acts? I find and book the acts, and I try to choreograph pieces to fit within the space. Many of the acts travel the world doing the big international circus shows such as La Clique and La Soiree. Most of the performers are headline acts in their own right. They are absolute world class— I can’t stress how amazing they are.
Have you suffered any serious mishaps during a performance? I’ve never done anything major. I burn myself every so often, but you can’t help it. I’ve got a really pretty burn on my arm at the moment. It’s lovely. I look a little bit like a smack addict. People look at me funny if I get marks on my arm—they think they’re track marks. But I’m too fat to be a heroin addict.
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cookâ€™S privilEgE Viel Richardson meets Andy Cook, the head chef responsible for returning the world famous Savoy Grill to its former glories.
31 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
After three years, an enormous amount of work and a bill for over £200 million, the famous revolving doors of the Savoy Hotel are once again twirling away under the gentle pressure of guests and doormen. As the capital welcomes one of its most prestigious landmarks back into the spin, one of the things that has got those famous doors turning has been the return of a famous and much loved restaurant. First opened in 1889 and closely associated with the godfather of modern haute cuisine Auguste Escoffier, the Savoy Grill enjoys a name and reputation already firmly established around the world. This meant that its return brought with it expectations about the nature of the menu and the standard of the cooking. Failure to meet these expectations would amount to a very high profile disaster. The chef entrusted with the task is Andy Cook, a protégé of the restaurant’s ultimate boss Gordon Ramsay, whose group runs the Savoy Grill. Cook lacks the thoroughly lived in looks of his mentor—in fact he seems a very young man to be entrusted with such responsibility. Did he feel pressurised by the weight of expectations? “Not in any bad sense,” he says. “Because I worked here under Marcus Wareing, it is not as intimidating as it would have been.” In fact, he seems genuinely thrilled by the job. “It is an iconic 100-yearold restaurant that is known around the world, and to hold this position is fantastic. I love the fact that I am head chef at the Savoy Grill. I love the fact that no matter how crap I feel in the morning when I walk up the stairs into the kitchen this big smile comes to my face. There is some pressure, as there is an expectation and you want to live up to it. But I love what I do so it is good pressure.” That ease with pressure speaks of confidence. It is a confidence born out of experience, for despite his youthful looks, Andy Cook has paid his dues. As well as working under Wareing, Andy went on to work with Ramsay himself at Claridge’s, rising to the post of senior sous chef. He then headed to Italy, where he spent a year and a half in various kitchens, followed by a short spell as chef de partie with Gualtiero Marchesi at his eponymous two star restaurant outside Milan. In 2005 Andy’s relationship with Ramsay was re-established when Cook was asked to open the new Gordon Ramsay restaurant at the prestigious Conrad Hotel in Tokyo. After three years in Tokyo, Andy moved to New York as head chef at Maze. Next was a taste of West Coast glamour as Andy moved to Los Angeles to become executive chef 32 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
at the group’s restaurant in the London Hotel, West Hollywood, which was awarded a Michelin star within three months of opening. Finally, after two years in LA, Andy caught the plane back to Blighty to take up his present position. So after all these multi-cultural experiences, what can diners at the Savoy Grill expect as they sit down at one of the beautifully laid tables? “When I sat down with Gordon and chef director Stuart Gillies to see how we wanted to approach the restaurant, we felt that there was nothing really bigger than the name, so the restaurant itself had to set the agenda,” Andy explains. “The Savoy Grill is a traditional restaurant where people already have an idea what they expect, and it is important to go along with that. When we started talking to locals and regulars about what they were looking for, we found they really wanted to get back to the Grill as it was. They would say that they were really looking forward to having it open again, and how much they would really like to see the meat trolley again. Or how they couldn’t wait for the steak and kidney pudding.” It turns out that there were a great many people who were not looking upon the re-opening as the arrival of a new acquaintance, but the return of a well loved friend. “I think there are a whole generation of people who used to come here in the 80s and early 90s who have a lot of nostalgia for what it was like back then. We thought it was vital to retain the essence that people had become so attached to. Things like the carving trolley—10 or 12 years ago that was seen as passé and no one wanted it. But now we’ve brought it back with something different in it every day. Being able to roll that out into the dining room is great, and it is being accepted again.” Andy’s offerings include old Savoy Grill favourites such as dover sole and the Omelette Arnold Bennett, a dish created at the restaurant in the 1920s for novelist Arnold Bennett. With so much tradition to draw upon, it is quite a lengthy menu, but Andy explains that when the team sat down and listed the classic dishes they felt they had to include, a large part wrote itself. While this may seem a bit restricting Andy sees it as just the opposite. “It was nice knowing what the parameters were, knowing what the concept was, knowing how far you could push it in any one direction before you began to lose the essence of what the restaurant was all about. For a chef that is a real luxury, because you know the direction you’re heading in. You know the kind of things that will and won’t work. Because you can’t just
It was nice knowing what the parameters were, knowing what the concept was, knowing how far you could push it in any one direction before you began to lose the essence of what the restaurant was all about.
TASTE The Savoy Grill Strand 020 7592 1600 gordonramsay.com/thesavoygrill
head off to pick up the latest fashionable ingredient or use the latest technique, it forces you to think a bit more. What seems like a restriction actually frees you up to think more creatively, even when thinking about new dishes.” When I ask Andy how his personality will manifest itself on the menu, he ponders for while and when it comes, his answer goes to a place way beyond techniques and recipes. “One of the hardest things I have ever done was going to Japan, a culture that I had no idea about. In the first year I was really just swimming, just staying afloat. To be honest I had arrived with a bit of arrogance. I had finished my time with Gordon and was working in a two star restaurant in Italy. Now I was being offered the chance to go to Tokyo and open a new restaurant in a top hotel. It was the chance of a lifetime. So I jumped at it. Who wouldn’t? But it was a real eye-opener. I had to grow up very quickly. Their work ethic is absolutely phenomenal and I very quickly found that I didn’t know half the things that I thought I knew. Working in Japan taught me to have a real respect for the workplace and for what I was doing. “When I moved to California I found the most amazing produce, because they just have one long season. One of our suppliers would turn up with plums when they were in 33 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
season and our pastry chef would just puree them and turn them into a sorbet, without doing anything else to them, because they were that sweet and that tasty. So I think my main influence on the menu is going to come from my time spent in Japan and the States, and cover both the food-based and management-based sides of the job. Working in different cultures has shown me different ways of looking at things and ways of approaching things. How can I make sure we get the best quality ingredients and treat them with respect and keep the process simple? That will probably be the biggest influence.” The time spent abroad has had another affect on Andy, which emerges when I ask if he has a favourite food. “Japanese,” comes the answer with a slightly guilty grin, in this most un-Japanese of restaurants. Having spent so much time there he just loves the food. But when it comes to cooking, it’s a different matter. “I love cooking English and modern European dishes,” he says. “There is a lot of meat involved in them and I love cooking meat. I love the kind of cooking where you look at it and say: ‘This is really going to taste good.’ European cooking is like that because you have all these different ingredients going into it. You can see all these ingredients
coming together and know that they are going to create something wonderful.” The first thing Andy remembers cooking “properly” was a béchamel sauce when he was about 14 years old—it was cheese sauces with everything for months afterwards. “That was when I discovered that you could manipulate flavours and could start working with one of your senses,” he remembers. “That is when I really got hooked on cooking.” However, his first memorable culinary experience goes back a bit further. “I went to a hotel with my dad when I was about 10. We were on our way to a car show and he said we had to stop off there because I had to try one of their chip butties. So we go there and I’m perched on a barstool where my feet don’t reach the floor, and am gripping a pint of Coke. Then this thing comes out: a slice of bread a couple of inches thick, heavily buttered, with a massive pile of chips on top and then another seemingly enormous slice of buttered bread sitting on top of it. Tucking in next to my dad in this huge hotel was amazing. I still remember that chip butty to this day.” As with the beginning of all great passions, it seems that there was a lot more than some well made chips wrapped up in the that formative moment.
TASTE Ladurée 1 The Market Building laduree.fr
my food lifE
/Vincent Lemains, Head pastry chef at Ladurée
CGJ: What is a macaron and how do you make one? VL: A macaron is a little french delicacy made from two biscuit shells and a filling of confiture and chocolate ganache. The biscuit is a very technical patisserie mix and requires a lot of rigour and precision. First, we carefully select the almonds that come from our own Californian plantations. We grind the almonds and add them to the icing sugar. What we obtain is a sweet almond powder that is used as a base for the conception of the biscuit. We then add a faintly warm Italian meringue to the powder and delicately combine the two. Once our mix is even we dress the shells on trays and place them in the oven for a very precise period of time. Once the biscuit is baked, all that is left to do is to garnish the shells, close them together and delight in the taste! What does the perfect macaron look like and why are they so hard to make? The two shells must be identical, both in their diameter and their colour; they must look aesthetically brilliant and luminous. The biscuit to filling ratio must be right and must be adjusted such that the macaron softens slightly. The complexity of the recipe is in the technique used during the mixing of the ingredients – the entire recipe can be ruined by over-mixing! The time and temperature of the baking process must also be managed perfectly. There are so many different flavours —what is the strangest flavour? A strange flavour... yes, I think the mint and strawberry macaron that we launched last spring. I love the freshness the mint provides against the sweetness of the strawberry at its seasonal best —it is a subtle and successful agreement of flavours. I have many ideas for future creations of course. But I keep them for myself. 34 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
How was the macaron first created? The macaron dates back to the Middle Ages and a number of towns are associated with its origin, such as Amiens and Nancy. During this epoch the macaron was only made from a single shell, sometimes lightly crackled. It is during the time of Louis XIII that the macaron was developed into what it is today: two shells garnished with a filling. It was a patisserie chef from the Basque country in southern France who originally assembled the two shells to offer them as a gift to the king. Have you improved on the original recipe? Well, I’m not sure about that. The patisserie chefs were already very skilled back then. However, I can say with certainty that we have made the recipe less sweet. Do macarons vary from country to country? No, absolutely not—our recipe is universal. You will find the same macaron whether you are in Paris, Tokyo or Dubai. What’s your earliest macaron memory? It was in Florence, Italy. A candied lemon macaron, sharp and fresh—beautiful! Did you always want to be a pastry chef? Yes, I am crazy about sugar. I have never seen myself doing anything else. It is a dynamic and fascinating line of work, in which beautiful encounters occur often. What else do you make for Ladurée? I am behind the creation of the entire sweet spectrum at Ladurée—the Ladurée ice creams and sorbets, viennoiseries, chocolates—for all the countries we work in. I confess I have a weakness for the creation of ice creams and sorbets. Do you not get fed up of sweet food when you’re making it all day? I prefer sweet things. But do I ever tire of them? Never.
For the perfect macaron, the two shells must be identical, both in their diameter and their colour; they must look aesthetically brilliant and luminous. The biscuit to filling ratio must be right and must be adjusted such that the macaron softens slightly.
35 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
Jean-Paul Aubin-Parvu revels in the chilly pleasures of Gelatorinoâ€™s freshly made Italian gelato.
36 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
TASTE Gelatorino 2 Russell Street, Opera Quarter 020 7240 0746 gelatorino.com
Thank you, God. I’ve made it past St Peter, through the pearly gates and into ice cream heaven. Mini mountains of the most amazing Italian gelato call to me from frosted drums, while beyond stands an angel creating yet another batch. Drawing me in ever deeper are the many photographs of the freshest ice cream, each one simply begging to be licked. But despite the cool, shivering promise of gelato, I’m a little hot under the collar. The reason for this has everything to do with Gabriella Caroni, another of Italy’s finest exports. Exquisite ice cream and beautiful Italians—Do things get any better? Gabriella is one of three partners of Gelatorino. She and her colleagues opened the ice cream parlour in April, believing that London was lacking in fabulously fresh, made-in-front-of-your-eyes Italian gelato. They wish to give customers the whole gelato experience—its traditions, flavours and textures. And not just any Italian gelato, but the wonder stuff from Turin. Gelato is taken very seriously in Turin. “It’s very important,” says Gabriella. “The best gelato makers come from there. We have, let’s call it a special recipe, which is a little bit different from the rest of Italy. It’s even more creamy and velvety. So in Turin you find this kind of ice cream, which in our opinion is the best you can eat.” I press Gabriella for these secrets. “First of all, the ingredients,” she answers. “Everything has to be of the highest quality, so the best milk and the best cream.” Gelatorino sources its “characterising ingredients”, as Gabriella refers to them, from all corners of Italy, including chocolate from Turin, certified IGP hazelnuts from the surrounding Piedmont region and the best almonds and Bronte pistachios from Sicily. Gelatorino’s recipes were created by gelato maestro Alberto Marchetti. Alberto comes from a long line of gelato makers and has a shop in Turin. “Alberto is highly skilled and is great at developing his 37 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
recipes,” says Gabriella. “He always wants to improve the quality of his product.” Alberto regularly hops over from Turin to ensure that his recipes are being followed to the letter. The chef responsible for making the gelato is Ariele Guaschino, who has received expert training and has even begun to create his own recipes. Gelatorino created one to honour the birth of a daughter to one of the partners. “We created the Francesca flavour,” says Gabriella, who also has a baby girl. I ask Gabriella whether that also heralded a new recipe. “No, because Sophia was born two years ago,” says Gabriella. “But for her next birthday we’ll prepare the Sophia.” The machine used to make the gelato is vital to the process. It is a traditional Mantecatore, manufactured by Cattabriga. This machine works vertically, with a large spatula moving up and down, and turning slowly, to gently mix the ingredients. The basic starting point for any gelato flavour is the fiordilatte—a blend of sugar, milk, cream and a natural binding agent. Fiordilatte is actually a flavour in its own right, and I’m told that the best way to judge the quality of an Italian gelato parlour is by tasting its fiordilatte. These basic ingredients go into the Mantecatore, whose freezing temperature and spatula combine to start blending everything together. The liquid gradually thickens and becomes ever creamier, and eventually Ariele adds the characterising ingredients as dictated by the recipe. The process is called “mantecazione”. This means the gradual texturing of the gelato as it is mixed to the perfect velvety consistency. There should be no ice crystals, just perfectly smooth gelato, and Ariele has the skill to know exactly when it’s ready. He then transfers the gelato into a steel bowl pre-frozen to a finger numbing minus 20. Gelato left in open display begins to deteriorate almost immediately, so in keeping with the best traditions, Gelatorino preserves its gelato in rows of “pozzetti”, which are covered refrigerated wells sunk into the counter. This ensures that the structure of its gelato will remain perfect for customers to savour in the next few hours. Gabriella tells me that the gelato is very easy to digest because it contains nothing artificial. “I can assure you that you can eat a big quantity of our ice cream without getting a stomach ache.” I take that as an open invitation—no better way to explore the range of gelato flavours on offer. Let’s start with the choc chip. My weapon of choice is a small plastic spoon. “Wow!” is the best I can manage between several happy mouthfuls.
But why stop there? Suddenly Gabriella is talking Italian, which leads to the girl behind the counter passing me a spoon bearing fiordilatte—the pure stuff—which is as delicious as it is creamy. “Wonderful” and “superb” are the words I use to describe it. “The fiordilatte is lovely with hot chocolate sauce,” says Gabriella, drawing my eyes to a tap pouring an endless supply of a hot chocolate and hazelnut sauce. I want to spend the rest of my life here. The gianduja gelato, itself a blend of chocolate and Piedmont hazelnuts, is absolutely gorgeous. Then steering well clear of the cherry on religious grounds, I turn my attention to the pistachio gelato. The girl behind the counter is now holding a fistful of plastic spoons in my direction, so that my work may continue uninterrupted. The pistachio is made using the famous Bronte pistachios from Sicily, and the resulting gelato is simply divine. Only one problem—it’s the wrong colour —not even a hint of fluorescent green. “It’s the natural colour,” says Gabriella. “We don’t use colourings.” My gelato adventures continue. I stop off for Breakfast in Turin, a light coffee gelato with fine fragments of dark chocolate. “We created this recipe only for London,” says Gabriella, revealing that it’s her favourite. “Then we have the Francesca flavour, the one for our little mascot,” she grins, handing me yet another spoon. Francesca gelato turns out to be candied pear and cinnamon, tastes like Christmas and is, I exclaim, “quite exquisite!” I fear I may run out of superlatives long before Gelatorino runs out of flavours. But then my attention turns to the range of sorbetto, made from fruit, sugar and water. “They are very fresh, very light and perfect for summer, after dinner or if you’re a lighter person,” says Gabriella. I haven’t been “a lighter person” since 1987, but I’m certainly up for giving the sorbetto a go. And damn fine it is too—a bit like eating actual fruit, only much nicer. The mango scores a perfect 10, as does the passion fruit, with a burst of flavour that actually surprises me. And as for the pear... well! “The strawberry’s delicious,” shouts a customer, whom I hadn’t even noticed. My rasp of “let me at it then” is almost a war cry, and soon I’m noisily agreeing with the now startled female. “Anything else I can try?” I ask the girl behind the counter. She smiles back at me in Italian, before disappearing off in search of yet more plastic spoons. I hope no one has made plans for later, because I’m not going anywhere fast.
TASTE in briEf
/Denis Bezucha of MD’s
CGJ: Where are you from originally? DB: I grew up in Vienna, Austria, but my parents are from Prague in the Czech Republic and so I actually see myself as half and half. Food was always very important. Both of my parents are in catering and hospitality and so I grew up with it. Vienna is synonymous with café culture. Yes, Austrian people love going to the coffee shops to drink coffee and have a cigarette —not any more! The smoking ban is still a really big deal in Austria, but they do it anyway. Honestly, they ignore it, absolutely. When did your passion for food begin? At the age of four or five. My grandfather had a canteen in Vienna and mum says that I was always behind the bar or out in the kitchen. I’d bring over the small glasses of beer to the customers. And at home on Sundays I would help my parents with the cooking. When it came to choosing a school I decided to go to one that had something to do with hospitality and catering, and after that I spent three years gaining the highest industry qualification, covering everything to do with hotels, catering and hospitality. Tell us about Hotel Sacher Vienna. Each year Austrian schoolchildren have to do a two month work placement. My first was at Hotel Sacher, one of the world’s most famous hotels. It was an amazing experience. I was young and this was my first job. I started off in the kitchen and was responsible for the salads, vegetable side dishes and garnishes. When did you move to London? Two years ago. I had wanted to go to New York, but my now ex-girlfriend suggested we come to London first, because it was closer and we wouldn’t need a visa. Plus my grandma had lived here for more than 25 years while working for the BBC, so I’d always had a connection with London. 38 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
Did you always want to own your own place? Yes, but when we first came to London I wanted to open something completely different. Then I figured out how huge the whole sandwich culture is in the UK, yet everybody sells the same kind of sandwiches, it’s just the packaging that’s different. It seems as if they are all made in one factory—the fillings are the same and they taste the same—so I thought let’s do our open sandwiches here. The white and wholemeal breads are family recipes and the recipes for the spreads are my father’s.
My father left after the Russians came. He moved to Vienna and decided to do these sandwiches at his restaurant—only smaller. So he introduced open sandwiches to Vienna. And now here at MD’s in Covent Garden you can have five or six smaller ones, each with a different topping.
What sort of toppings? We do a wide range. The favourites include the Italian ham spread, where we slice the ham very thinly and then add vegetables and a little mayonnaise. People also love the roast beef, which we roast here. Why did you decide to call your place MD’s? The smoked salmon is extremely popular The initials stand for Monika and Denis. and I believe that ours is the best smoked Monika was my girlfriend. We decided to salmon—I found it at Billingsgate Market. open a place together, but then broke up four The other toppings include aubergine spread months after coming to London. By which and our very special Liptauer curd cheese. time MD’s had already been registered as a trademark, and I decided to keep it because Isn’t one of them topped with caviar? I liked way the name sounded and I also Yes, many of our customers say they’ll have liked the logo. So now I can say that it stands to try that one as they’ve never tried caviar for Mum and Denis, because my mum is before. We use caviar from Spain. working here at the moment. Do open sandwiches allow you to be more Tell us about your open sandwiches. creative and colourful? The first open sandwiches were created in Absolutely! They are eye-catching, and 1920s Prague by the legendary deli producer because they are open sandwiches you Jan Paukert, but they were much larger. can’t hide anything—everything has to My dad grew up with these sandwiches. be totally fresh. And there are so many
TASTE Orient express There was a time when the only complaint you could level at Covent Garden’s food scene was its relatively small choice of Thai restaurants. Not anymore however–for arriving hot on the heels of the newly opened Suda is a restaurant whose passion for Thai has caused a
veritable stir fry at every one of its London locations. With a speed of service that rivals Wagamama’s (and a quality that leaves it standing) Busaba is the perfect choice for those whose idea of the perfect Thai food experience is steaming, speedy, atmospheric and served with an enormous smile.
MD’s 38 William IV Street 020 7240 0622 yummymds.co.uk
/Coffee column possibilities. But you have to garnish cleverly, because otherwise when the customer bites into the sandwich everything will fall out. You have to know exactly what to put on first and what to put on last. Do you deliver? Our main business is delivering to offices. When a company has a meeting they will usually order sandwiches, you know, boring ones. But now they can have something eye-catching and delicious. One media company in Austria told us that they win every single pitch just because of our buffet.
STrEngTh in numbErS
/Angela Holder on why ‘strength’ is such a murky concept in coffee
“Coffee boiled is coffee spoiled” is a useful aphorism that I heard for the first time recently. I wish there were more coffee related sayings to guide people on how to brew not stew. Perhaps I should start making my own up. “Words won’t be kind if you use the wrong grind”, for example. What else do you sell at MD’s? Unfortunately such mnemonics rely on We do pastries and cakes. There’s our apple there being a general understanding of the strudel, sweet curd strudel, banana cake subject at hand. Sadly, despite over 350 and the carrot cake, which is my mum’s years of coffee drinking in this country, recipe. The Sacher chocolate is made here the average coffee layperson’s knowledge using the original recipe from Hotel Sacher, can probably be read on the label of an who sells this cake worldwide. And we serve instant coffee jar. fabulous coffee. From the age of three The topic of coffee ‘strength’ is a I spent two months of the year in Italy, and subject that seems to have been on I believe that Italians have the best coffee. people’s minds of late. These are murky So that’s why I chose Illy coffee for MD’s. waters to sail in with no useful compass, since everyone seems to mean a different Do you serve anything a little stronger? thing when they talk about ‘strength’, coffee It was quite a hassle to get the premises companies included. Does it refer to how licensed, but now customers can enjoy our bitter it is, the level of roast or the perceived food with a glass of wine, champagne or amount of caffeine in the coffee? I’ve a beer. You can sit in the lounge and relax worked in coffee for years and even I am —you don’t always have to eat on the run. not sure what ‘flavour strength 3’ means on those supermarket packets. (I bet wine Aren’t you also vice president of the professionals have the same issue with Austrian Club London? those helpful wineglass ‘sweetness’ Yes I am. A friend of mine introduced me to guides that you find on supermarket the president, who asked if I could help them shelves.) A new colleague, watching me to organise an Austrian ball. I told them that blending together three coffees to make events and hospitality is what I’d been doing an espresso blend asked whether it meant for 20 years. So I became a member of the the resultant coffee would be stronger. Austrian Club London, and then six months The answer is no. Wine is not blended to ago they voted me in as vice president. make it more alcoholic, but to create a We are a non-profit organisation and put on pleasing experience and it is the same all sorts of events, including Austrian balls, with coffee blends. Well, in an ideal world. riverboat parties and trips to museums and the theatre. 39 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
So what does affect the ‘strength’ of coffee? 1— The boring answer is that the strength of a brewed coffee is due to the ratio of coffee grounds used in relation to the amount of water, which affects the amount of coffee solids in the brew. The more coffee used, the stronger the brew. Clearly the person making the coffee has a big influence on this, so ignorance is not bliss in this instance. 2— The intensity of the flavour can be perceived as ‘strength’. A coffee with big, punchy, complex fruit (like Kenyan and Indonesian coffees) can be perceived as strong, while more subtle, gentle coffees with less fruit can be viewed as mild (such as Brazilian and Guatemalan coffees). So perceived ‘strength’ can also be down to the place that the coffee is grown. 3— Additionally, the intensity of the coffee flavour is due to brewing factors such as using the correct grind size for your brewing method and the correct water temperature. Get either—or both—wrong, and undesirable elements such as bitterness may be enhanced, or the coffee may be wishy washy. Funnily enough, I don’t believe that the level of roast is an infallible indicator of the ‘strength’ of a coffee. Dark roasts are not necessarily strong tasting nor are medium roasts necessarily mild. Now if only I could come up with a punchy aphorism for that!
TASTE in briEf
Festival fun One might argue having the London Restaurant Festival in Covent Garden is like the cherry on a fine patisserie: delicious, but hardly necessary for a culinary scene of international repute. But then, one might as well liken food to biomass fuel as to deny this cornucopia
TArT wiTh A hEArT /Treacle tart with apple and vanilla from Bill’s
Ingredients 200g plain flour, sifted 100g unsalted butter, chilled and cubed 2 tbsp icing sugar Zest of 1 lemon 2 large eggs yolks, beaten For the filling 450g golden syrup 170ml single cream Zest and juice of 1 lemon 50g breadcrumbs 250g apples, grated 1 tsp vanilla extract Preheat the oven to 180°C and leave a baking sheet in the oven to get hot. Start by rubbing the flour and butter together in a large bowl or whizzing them in a food processor until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Then stir in the icing sugar and lemon zest. Add the egg yolks and mix until you have a dough. If it’s too dry, add a splash of water. Knead briefly until smooth, wrap in cling film and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes. While the dough is chilling, place the golden syrup, the cream and the lemon zest and juice in a saucepan over a low heat and simmer gently for 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat, add the breadcrumbs, grated apple and vanilla extract, give things a good stir, then leave to stand for 10 minutes. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface and use to line a 25cm diameter flan tin, pricking the pastry base a few times with a fork. Place a sheet of baking parchment over the pastry and cover with baking beans. Bake blind for 10-15 minutes, remove the paper and beans and return the flan tin to the oven for 5 more minutes. Remove the pastry case from the oven, pour the treacle mix in to it and bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown. 40 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
of tasting menus, demonstrations and offers on the grounds of need. Running from 3rd-17th October, this multi-flavoured event will be seasoning a variety of restaurants in and around the Covent Garden area, and at venues all across central London. This year L’Atelier de Joel Rubuchon, Thai Square
and Bedford and Strand, Tamaria and the Amphitheatre are all back on the LRF menu, together with fresh new offerings from Peter Gordon’s restaurant Kopapa, The Dial Bar at the new Mercer Street Hotel and Suda, St Martin’s Courtyard’s recent Thai recruit—giving bon vivants of all budgets a chance to eat out in style.
TASTE Spuds we like There was a time when the jacket potato was something you picked up down the local caff. It had most likely been sitting on the counter for a few days, and was then unceremoniously sprinkled with some plastic grated cheese, blasted in the microwave, then shoved in your
direction in a polystyrene container, which would wear away at the bottom, leaving you doused in hot margerine. Gone are those days! Head off to Spud where the potato is king, freshly cooked to a crisp finish, his jacket split and his soft insides filled with offerings including Sicilian aubergine, tomato and cumin
Bill’s 13 Slingsby Place, St Martin’s Courtyard 020 7240 8183 Bills-website.co.uk Recipes extracted from Bill’s The Cookbook: Cook Eat Smile by Bill Collison and Sheridan McCoid, out now published by Saltyard Books, £25
stew, game chilli con carne, and chicken, chickpea and chorizo ragu. It’s all about nutritious and inventive slow food here. They also serve Shoreditch’s famous Allpress coffee. ilovespud.com
5 of ThE bEST /Coffees
Canela Canela means cinnamon in Portuguese. In Lisbon, all coffees are served with a stick of the heady spice, and as you use it to stir in your sugar, it slowly releases its aromatic warmth. Canela has decided that this is a tradition worth promoting, so every coffee you order here will come with a piece of this most novel of stirrers. Coffee is served strong, in the customary Portuguese way, and the blends used, from Angola and Brazil, produce a brown/gold sheen when mixed with hot water. While you’re here, you really must try the cafe’s Portuguese tarts, made in-house, which unsurprisingly fly out of the shop on a daily basis. Canela 33 Earlham Street 020 7240 6926 canelacafe.com
Double Shot Though the owner has a background at Starbucks, the vibe at Double Shot couldn’t be more different. Light and airy, the interior boasts an eclectic range of paintings and photography, and tables are decorated with fresh flowers and books for browsing. The USP of Double Shot is all in the name, and all coffees come with two hits of strong caffeine unless you chicken out and request otherwise. They also have free WIFI, so this is a great place to chill out while getting a powerful kick of caffeine for your buck. Double Shot 38 Tavistock Street 020 7240 9742 doubleshotcoffee.co.uk
Andronicas Situated slap bang in the middle of Covent Garden Piazza, Andronicas is a picturesque spot to pick up your coffee fix. All the seating is outdoors, sprawled out across the Piazza, and waiters come to take your order making for a relaxed restaurant type experience. The coffee is a signature blend mixing four different coffees from various corners of South America, and the result is surprisingly sharp and zesty which is enjoyably bitter and tingly on the tongue. You can also buy coffee beans to take away, all of which are 41 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
roasted to order in 15 minutes and come in five different roasts, from light to ‘burnt’. Andronicas 27b, The Market Building 020 7749 4794 andronicas.com
Notes Music & Coffee If you’ve been mourning the loss of the Foyles Jazz Café, then Notes Music & Coffee is the perfect pick-me-up. Notes stocks a huge range of classical, jazz and world music, as well as a number of carefully chosen films. There’s nowhere else in London where you can contemplate a compilation of Stravinsky’s finest over a cup of Square Mile coffee, yet this is certainly no gimmick and the staff here are equally serious about both the drinks and the music. The coffee is deliciously smooth and rounded, and is served alongside a seasonal selection of baguettes and focaccia sandwiches made in-house. Notes Music & Coffee 31 St Martins Lane 020 7240 0424 notesmusiccoffee.com
Monmouth There’s little to say about Monmouth that hasn’t already been said. This Covent Garden institution began roasting beans in the basement as long ago as 1978. Things have changed a little since then, and the beans, sourced from single farms, co-operatives and estates across the globe are now roasted just over the river on Maltby Street. Queues at the Covent Garden shop often snake around the corner, and the coffee is unrivalled in its balanced and incredibly smooth taste. Monmouth sells a huge range of beans from around the world, but a particularly unusual option is the Finca Las Lajas from Costa Rica. Here, the coffee berries are sun-dried on their own personal sun beds in order to extract the bean inside, which makes for a particularly fruity, pungent blend, with notes of cocoa. Monmouth 27 Monmouth Street 020 7232 3010 monmouthcoffee.co.uk
42 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
WoRld RecoRdS Jean-Paul Aubin-Parvu meets Andrew Scriven, the Apple Market’s globetrotting photographer, and hears about cycling, weather and a transcendental moment with a humpback whale.
Photographer and explorer Andrew Scriven had his first taste of adventure at the age of 16. Armed with the best of British scouting skills, he persuaded three friends to join him on an 800 mile cycle from the Swiss Alps to London. Then, in June 2009, Andrew set out on an epic 12-month journey, travelling to the world’s harshest environments. He experienced the freezing temperatures of Antarctica, hiked through humid rainforests, trekked the Himalayas to Everest Base Camp and even left his footprints on the Atacama Desert in Chile, the driest desert on the planet. Luckily Andrew remembered to pack his camera equipment and his breathtaking photographs have reached the final stages of some major photography awards. Andrew now has a stall in The Apple Market, Covent Garden Piazza, where he sells very special prints of his work. So perhaps his greatest adventure has only just begun. CGJ: Which came first, the photography or the exploring? AS: I’ve always had a passion for photography, but I would say the travelling. At the age of 16, I got three friends together, opened a map in the library and told them that I wanted to go on a long cycle ride. And it seemed to make sense to go from the Swiss 43 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
Alps back to London. Our parents drove us to Switzerland, dropped us off, and then the four of us cycled back. We camped the whole way. It took 25 days. One of my friends went over his handlebars and hit a car, which was pretty nasty, and a few hostels and campsites marked on the map weren’t actually there, so we ended up sleeping in barns. We just ate croissants and bread, so were hungry all the time, but it was an amazing trip. When did you become passionate about photography? I was in the photography club at school, but it wasn’t until I picked up an SLR, and in particular digital compacts, that it really took off. I like to go to places and to look at things, and a camera gave me that opportunity to stop and actually capture what I’d gone to see. So photography seemed to go hand in hand with my curiosity about the world around me. Didn’t you once try to become a weather forecaster? After finishing my geography degree I entered a BBC talent scheme and applied to be a weatherman. They invited me in, but I was going to be away in Costa Rica, so I telephoned and emailed incessantly asking
if I could come in before I went. When they said no I decided to just turn up at the BBC. A lady finally came out to reception and I explained what I wanted to do. Bizarrely, after a five minute interview, she led me into a studio, handed me a fake weather report and told me to sit in front of the camera. They were just gearing up for the afternoon news so she told me I had 10 minutes and then I’d have to be out. My weather report was pretty bad, but it was good fun. I’ve still got the video. How did your big adventure come about? I’d always wanted to embark on a huge trip, but kept postponing it. After university I started working in the City and you know how it goes—one year rolls into the next and there’s always a reason not to do it. But then I thought, enough is enough. Quitting my job was the most amazing feeling. I didn’t know exactly what I was going to do until about a week before I booked. And then seven days later I was off. When did your trip begin? I flew to Vancouver with my bike in June 2009, and cycled down the west coast of North America to California. I then popped over to Hawaii for a few weeks to look at the volcanoes and rainforests. I went on into
Colombia and then took a bus all the way down through South America until finally I reached Ushuaia, the southern tip. I camped there for six weeks waiting for a route down to Antarctica. Lots of big cruise ships came into port, but I didn’t really want to go on one of those, then all of a sudden this threemast tea clipper sailed in—just like that ship from The Goonies. I was blown away and knew that was the boat for me. It wasn’t easy to find the captain, but I eventually managed to get onto the ship to meet him for a drink. I tried to get taken on as crew, so I wouldn’t have to pay anything, but I didn’t have enough experience. I rang the Dutch owners and eventually wangled my way on as a paying guest. You end up working anyway, being woken up at 4am to do a four hour shift, steering the ship, looking out for icebergs and that kind of thing. It was just the most magical trip. How was Antarctica? It was like nowhere else I’d seen. It’s incredibly inspiring and I just couldn’t get off the deck. You want to see that first iceberg and to catch a glimpse of the mainland. Then when you reach it, just the sheer scale of it, it’s very hard to take in. There’s just so much light, so much wildlife. The ship would anchor and you’d take a Zodiac, an inflatable, 44 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
motorised dinghy over to the mainland and be given fairly free reign to wander around. And everywhere you look is another great picture. Didn’t one of these great pictures make the finals of the Sony World Photography Awards 2011? Yes, Sunset Over a 3-mast Tea Clipper. It was recently shown at Somerset House as part of the awards exhibition, which moves to New York and Sao Paulo later this year. It was shot from the shores of the Antarctica Peninsula. I trekked up a glacier on the mainland to gain the viewpoint down on the boat floating off the shore. It provides a visual point of reference, allowing us to appreciate the scale of the incredible landscape. The tea clipper resembles a toy ship next to the glaciers. It was a blissfully peaceful moment. The ice appears to be blue. Is that Photoshop? What struck all of us was just how blue it really was—as if there’s a blue light source underneath the ice. The oxygen is sucked out of the ice through the pressure and the cold, and just the way the light enters the ice generates the blue tint. And it’s incredibly vibrant. Some of my pictures have been edited to enhance the blues.
What struck all of us was just how blue it really was—as if there’s a blue light source underneath the ice. The oxygen is sucked out of the ice through the pressure and the cold, and just the way the light enters the ice generates the blue tint. It’s incredibly vibrant.
arts Andrew Scriven Photography The Apple Market North Hall, The Market Building Covent Garden Piazza (Tuesdays & Wednesdays) andrewscriven.co.uk
Left—A storm brews in the Atacama Desert Right—Humpback whale in the Antarctic Ocean Below left—A stunning view from Chapman’s Peak on the coast of South Africa Below— Frozen beauty Below right—Sunset over a three-mast tea clipper
Didn’t you bump into a humpback whale? Humpback Whale in the Antarctic Ocean was shortlisted in the National Geographic International Photographic Contest 2010. That is my favourite image. It was one of those moments you just dream about. We were sailing one morning when the guys up in the masts spotted a pod of whales. So I hung over the edge of the deck holding my camera. A whale swam slowly to the surface alongside me, and the water was so clear that I was able to watch it from some depth. It brushed the surface, taking in a breath, before slowly and effortlessly descending back down into the depths and darkness. I held my breath and took the photograph. It was a beautiful moment. The polarising filter on the camera and the wake from our ship helped create the magical effect seen on the water. It is a memory I will never forget. Then where did you go? The two highlights of my trip were going to be Antarctica and Everest, so I spent three months independently trekking the Himalayas. One morning I set off really early to go over a pass and ended up getting lost, which was stupid. And then the snow came in and everything turned white. It is rocky terrain and I couldn’t see the contours of the land because it was covered in snow. 45 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
I’d already been lost for quite some time. It was freezing. It was just me and a bunch of yaks and I couldn’t see anything. I was about 5,000 metres up and didn’t want to be outside in my sleeping bag at that kind of altitude. Fortunately I could hear a river and I knew which side of it I needed to be. Keeping the river to my left I kept going, really carefully, wearing my fluorescent gear in case someone saw me. After a couple of hours the snow cleared and I could see again. I’d been going in roughly the right direction and so I arrived just before dark. I was very relieved. It’s funny, because you see a lot of missing person signs on the way up, and at the start you think: “God, this is quite serious.” But when you’ve been trekking for 30 days you get a bit complacent. And then you get lost. Didn’t you end up in South Africa? I went there to photograph the World Cup finals and to experience England winning the competition. The football was disappointing, but the atmosphere was incredible and the big street parties were amazing. I also went into some of the townships to photograph. So when did you photograph the Northern Lights? When I came back I didn’t want to stop
travelling and taking pictures, so I went out to Iceland in November 2010 and was very lucky to capture the Northern Lights. Are you enjoying having a stall in The Apple Market? Yes. Covent Garden has always been one of my favourite parts of London, with the street performers, the energy, the shops, nice places to eat—there’s loads to do here. And I love the market. Everyone’s really friendly and I particularly enjoy the interaction with the public. So where next for Andrew Scriven? I’m off to Norway in the winter—can’t wait to go—and I’d love to get out to Alaska this summer. Why do cold regions appeal to you so much? I like being cold. I’m more of a fan of being wrapped up in a cold environment than struggling to move about somewhere hot, and I like jumping into a warm bar at the end of the day – if there is one – and heating up by the fire. But for photography purposes I just think that the light is incredible on a crisp, cold day.
46 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
Clare Fin the mys ney meets th booksh terious Dover e man behind op witho B ut any wookshop—a ords.
Like jumbo shrimp, plastic glasses and virtual reality, the concept of Dover Bookshop seems something of a contradiction at first. Yes, it is a shop—and yes, there are books. Yet where every other bookshop in Christendom contains shelves of word-filled tomes, the Dover bookshop is entirely text free. “Yep, we’re just images,” explains manager Tim Matthews, for what seems like the umpteenth time. On the face of it this should be easy to grasp: the sign on the front says ‘copyright free images’, and Tim assures me that is just what they do. But what I’m struggling to get my head around is that when you purchase just one book from Dover’s 10,000-strong collection, you can use every image however you want. Album covers, costume design, branding, wallpaper, ceramics, illustration—the list of possibilities is literally endless. Most customers hail from the creative industries, hence Dover’s enviable position. Yet when I stumble upon a collection of matchbox advertising cuts from the roaring 20s and ask, wideeyed, if I can reproduce some as posters, Tim is adamant: “It can be done.” “I get that sort of question two or three times a day at least” he says. “People don’t quite get the fact you can do what you like with your images. The only barrier is actually printing the stuff.” That’s expensive if you’re me and you’re just looking to pimp your room. Yet for the vast majority of Tim’s clients Dover is not about reproduction, but about inspiration, authenticity, and style. Take Stanley Donwood, for example, the artist behind the cover of Thom Yorke’s solo album, Eraser. Prior to designing it he came into Dover, and purchased a book from one of Dover’s most popular image collections, Victoriana. For months all went quiet— but when album Eraser appeared Tim recognised Stanley’s source of inspiration immediately, in the form of the cover’s splendid Victorian decorative border.
arts The Dover Bookshop, 18 Earlham Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 2111 doverbooks.co.uk
Not every visit to Dover can be so easily traced however. Casting his mind back over previous years Tim can think of several big names whom he knows have drawn inspiration from Dover, but whose original purchases he has completely forgotten. “Artists and fashion designers and ad agencies are coming and going continuously,” he points out, “and even if you know the name or their company you might not know their face.” Next day an email from Tim listing “a few notable customers” reads like a roll call of last decade’s creative types. Louis Vuitton, Liberty, Derren Brown, Frankie Boyle, Tom Baker—and that’s just the ones he can remember. “I’m always seeing things that must have been born out of Dover,” he says casually. “We’re just a really key part of the industry”. How key is evident from Dover’s address for 25 years, in a place surrounded by London’s theatre and media agencies. Yet while the yellow shop on Earlham Street might seem something of an institution today, Covent Garden hasn’t always been the most obvious location. “When I started here 20 years ago there was a greengrocer, ironmonger and butchers on this road,” Tim remembers. “It was a proper old London street, rough and pretty run down” In some places an odd juice bar 47 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
and record store spoke of better things to come—this was, after all, the nineties. But it wasn’t until property and media companies started investing in the area in the early part of this century that things started to pick up. Not surprisingly there is a book in Dover documenting exactly these changes. “It’s called Goodbye Covent Garden, and it has photographs showing things like the market traders and cars.” Tim smiles as he remembers his early career here, first at Penguin in the market square with its “basement full of Penguin Classics”, then at Foyles as a head of department.
The move to Dover came when he circulated some CVs, got offered a place, and thought he would give it a try. “I thought ‘I’ll stick this for a year’, and I ended up staying two decades,” he says, half disbelievingly. “I still really enjoy each day.” This year will mark Dover’s 25th anniversary in Covent Garden—another milestone Tim can’t quite comprehend. When I ask him what they’re doing to celebrate he looks surprised, and writes a reminder to himself: “I almost forgot about that!” he exclaims. But while less notable businesses would relish the thought of celebrating a quarter centenary, Dover’s quiet modesty is strangely reassuring. Long before Covent Garden the first Dover was opened in Australia in1982, by Yorkshireman Mark Oddie. Back then its aim was to buy archive and out of print books and resell them for copyright free use—the same, in fact as it is now. But even Down Under Dover’s simple concept succeeded in drawing in several high profile customers. One of these was Ken Russell, the man behind Woman in Love and The Devils, who told Oddie to take it to London. “He wandered in one day and loved what Dover had to offer. He said it would do really well over here”. Fast forward to the here-and-now and the maverick director proved spot on: Dover Bookshop is as integral to the creative industries as its faded yellow sign—a sketch of the sculpture of Newton contributed by Dover’s “biggest fan” Eduardo Paolozzi—is to Earlham Street. “For the price of a book you get the unlimited use of the images,” Tim explains. “People could charge £100 for that sort of thing.” You might not get exactly what you want: the iconic orange of Leon’s fast food chain isn’t the same as it appears in Dover’s book of Victoriana, and it’s safe to say Stella’s dresses weren’t exact repros. But when you can browse round hundreds and thousands of images, pick out what you like, play with them and “really get a feel for a project, in an affordable way”, then a picture really is worth a thousand words.
arts IN BrIeF
Broken Glass Never one to look on the bright side, Arthur Miller really went for broke with this one. Based on the infamous Kristallnacht of 1938, in which Nazis attacked Jews and destroyed their homes and businesses, Broken Glass explores the effects of this event on
Inadmissable Evidence 13th October—26th November Donmar Warehouse
GuilTy conScience /Donmar Warehouse
“I can’t escape it. I can’t forget it. And I can’t begin again.” With this rather foreboding sentiment, William Maitland begins his tirade of self-abuse and disclosure, dissecting his life and vehemently disliking everything that he finds. At 39 years old, he is both middle aged and “irredeemably mediocre”, being a divorce lawyer of no discernible talent. That he is married is no consolation: he dislikes his wife even more than his daughter—icy, indifferent, adolescent—despises him, and his mistress, for all her patience, is not much better. Yet what makes Maitland, if not loveable than at least some way understandable is his revulsion toward the formality of feeling. Like his creator, John Osborne, he hates hypocrisy, but that doesn’t stop him from practicing it—hence his deep self-loathing. Monologue follows monologue—some of which are cut together and none of which ever actually communicate much—and when he is finally punished for his acts it is by desertion on every possible level. Douglas Hodge should be a good match for Osborne’s anti-hero, having cut his teeth on the playwright’s fellow Angry Young Man Harold Pinter, while Doctor Who star Karen Gillan makes her West End stage debut as Maitland’s secretary Shirley. Jamie Lloyd, meanwhile, promises an intensity of direction that is both clear and forensically intelligent. 48 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
Jewish New Yorkers—in particular the stockbroker’s wife Sylvia Gellburg. After reading about it in the newspaper Sylvia becomes partially paralysed, a result partly of the shock and partly, so the psychiatrist comes to believe, of her deteriorating relationship with her husband. Sir Anthony Sher is the
husband Philip. His performance in the Tricycle’s production of the play last year won plaudits from every reviewer. Yet his co-star, Tara Fitzgerald, fresh from Misanthrope with Keira Knightley, was equally proficient, and their combination at the Vaudeville Theatre ought not to be missed.
arts La Traviata La Traviata, Verdi’s most famous and best loved opera is returning for neither the first nor last time to the Royal Opera House, in the very capable hands of Verdi veterans Richard Eyre and Bob Crowley. The title translates as ‘Fallen Woman’, and that is just what its protagonist does Matilda The Musical Filling the hole left by as long-running and popular a production as Chicago was always going to be a daunting task, but the new play that will be replacing that most venerable of West End musicals has a far better chance than most. Combining the theatrical might of the
Royal Shakespeare Company with the storytelling genius of Roald Dahl, Matilda The Musical opens at London’s Cambridge Theatre on Tuesday 18th October. Matilda The Musical, written by the highly acclaimed playwright Dennis Kelly with music and lyrics by the anarchic Australian comedian Tim Minchin,
over the course of three acts, propelled by two lovers and one of the most heartrending arias ever to have been put to music: Libiamo ne’ lieti calici, or as it is crudely translated, ‘Drinking Song’. The production is sung in Italian with English subtitles—so you can hear the beauty of the songs and understand them too.
first played to sold-out audiences at the RSC’s The Courtyard Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon for 12 weeks at the turn of the year. Roald Dahl’s magical tale tells the story of a much misunderstood girl with extraordinary powers, living in a world of crass and unsympathetic adults.
/Inside Story Our anonymous West End insider gives a backstage view of life in Theatreland
Driving Miss Daisy 26th September—17th December Wyndham’s Theatre
FRoM THe cReW RooM/ nAked oppoRTuniSM
MAde FoR TWo
The British have an interesting take on nudity. Whereas in many nations the giggling behind the bike sheds phase begins to wear off on the late teens, here it seems to continue ad infinitum. Or else it turns into something resembling a religious crusade to banish it altogether. The enormous success of Calendar Girls provides an interesting example. The premise of the story is a group of provincial housewives getting naked for a calendar shoot to raise money for cancer research. As such there is a great deal of—artfully staged—nudity in the show. Many well known actresses have taken to the stage to strut their unclothed stuff: Linda Bellingham, Anita Dobson, Jerry Hall, even gardening guru Charlie Dimmock have bare-footed across the boards. And while the thought of their favourite actress disporting in the altogether may have attracted the occasional punter with an unfortunate glint in his eye, the success of the show is based on a heart-warming story of true female friendship in adversity. It’s all good wholesome stuff. At least from the front of house perspective. Backstage, the atmosphere on a production where some famous flesh may be revealed is an altogether different matter. The moment a famous pair of bosoms are about to be bared, the sight police are on hand to make sure that no sly leching occurs. And in these days where cameras are shoe-horned into anything with a battery, god help the techie who strays onstage with any kind of lens. Suffice to say the resulting retribution would have the victim looking around hopefully for the hounds of hell for 49 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
some light relief. It all means that the chance of a mischievous eyeful is actually quite slim. Far more likely is a situation that I faced as a far younger techie. The show in question included a dance company, who at various times would swan on to the stage, dazzle the audience and then exit stage left. I was behind the set working on some props and wearing a head torch because it was so dark, when suddenly I was surrounded by people stripping off for a quick costume change. As I looked up I found out what a terrible thing a head torch can be. The beam arrowed in on a small but perfectly formed pair of breasts. “%&$* off” came a fierce whisper from their understandably irritated owner. Somewhat panicked I swung my gaze in the opposite direction, only for the pitiless beam to highlight a view that should be reserved for one’s wedding night. In desperation I swung my gaze upstage only for the unrelenting beam to focus on a well toned bottom, so close to my face that if I had actually been breathing, prosecution beckoned. I swung back around and stared at the by now perfectly arranged props, until the naked whirlwind had swept back onstage. Now there are those among you who will wonder why I didn’t just turn off the torch. I offer in my defence, that a preview performance a few days away from opening night is a fraught place, occasionally prone to addling the brain. Secondly, thinking back on the whole affair, I’m quite proud of the fact that as a young heterosexual male, faced with a naked beauty everywhere I looked, all I could think about was finding somewhere where there wasn’t any.
You could be forgiven, glancing at the castlist for the Wyndham’s forthcoming show, for failing to see the play for the actors. Vanessa Redgrave, James Earl Jones and Boyd Gaines unite to make this one of the most heavy-weight, star-studded productions to cross the pond in ages. Even the playwright, Alfred Uhry, has a Pulizer to add to the string of prizes trailing the castlist, not to mention the haul of Oscars won by the film version of his story. Yet when Driving Miss Daisy does finally premiere in the west end this month, it isn’t the stars or the glitz that will keep people coming back but a heart-warming portrayal of the transformative power of friendship. And not just any friendship either. Set in the Deep South at a time of even deeper prejudice, Driving Miss Daisy pairs a Jewish matriarch who is too old to drive with an African American chauffeur. One is stubborn, the other proud and compassionate: needless to say their friendship is a slow-burning one. Yet when Daisy does finally turn to the chauffeur and tell him, “You’re my best friend,” those who’ve already seen it on Broadway say it brings tears to the eyes. That it’s been greeted with such rave reviews in the States is a recommendation in itself: there’s no gamble in reserving this one. With Vanessa Redgrave as Daisy and James Earl Jones as Hoke the chauffeur, the actors could easily steal the show. Yet for the two hours you’re in Wyndhams you’re unlikely to see anything beyond a hilarious and beautiful friendship.
arts IN BrIeF
London Design Festival 17th-25th September londondesignfestival.com
deSiGned, SeAled, deliveRed
Paul Smith 40-44 Floral Street 020 7836 7828 9-11 Langley Court 020 7240 5420 paulsmith.co.uk
poSTeR MASTeR /Paul Smith
/London Design Festival
If you happen across a chandelier of LED-powered, trumpet-shaped pendants in Covent Garden Pizza this September, it will be more by design than happy accident. The London Design Festival is returning to Covent Garden this September, and Chandelier 39 by Canadian designer Omer Abel is just part of this nine day celebration of design talent. The festival is being staged across 150 venues dotted around London—but it is a reflection of Covent Garden’s creative vibe that so many must-see exhibitions are based here. The Piazza will host a fully functioning LEGO greenhouse designed by Sebastian Bergne. 63 Great Russell Street will see the arrival of new work by Ashraf Hanna, the award-winning potter whose explorations of form and colour know few bounds, while Endell Street’s Hospital Club is uniting a unique Peace and Non Violence installation from creative agents D&AD with the tried and tested concept of a bar. 50 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
From there it’s but a short stumble to the Aram Gallery, with its aptly titled The Art of Looking Sideways—a celebration of the late great graphic designer Alan Fletcher (pictured above). Even more curious is the display by Physical Pixels at University of the Arts London. Including plants that whisper to your touch and walls that shift shape, it’s called Inside Playful Minds and asks you to immerse yourself in an environment that offers the greatest rewards to the most adventurous players. Up on Bow Street, the Design Council will be asking: “What if we took professional car designers put them in a room with people from ‘the public’ and gave them 12 hours to come up with a green car design?” Check the LDF website for more details on how you can join in with this day of design and debate— the best will be developed into a 3D model and prototyped where possible.
As he’s a man who has mastered more crafts than seems polite, it would come as no great surprise to discover that Sir Paul Smith had at some point been a brilliant soldier and a world class spy as well as a notable tailor and tinker. But what these limited edition posters for the new film version of John Le Carre’s Cold War novel demonstrate is that he is certainly one hell of a graphic designer. To celebrate the UK release of Tomas Alfredson’s version of Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy—which stars Gary Oldman, Benedict Cumberbatch, Colin Firth and John Hurt—Sir Paul’s four silk screen printed posters are being sold in Paul Smith shops. Numbered in editions of 50 and signed by the designer, they are priced at £100 each, with all profits going to Maggie’s Cancer Caring Centres. Sir Paul collaborated with the film’s director in the early development stages of the film, offering his insights on the mood and colour of 1970s London.
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st martin’s courtyard
Located just a minute’s walk from Covent Garden and Leicester Square underground stations, with entrances to the courtyard on Long Acre, Upper St Martin’s Lane and Mercer Street.
exHibiT inky FinGeRS
THe SpAniSH line: dRAWinGS FRoM RibeRA To picASSo
Tenderpixel Gallery 10 Cecil Court 020 7379 9464 Tenderpixel.com
Courtauld Gallery Somerset House Strand 020 7848 252 courtauld.ac.uk
National Portrait Gallery St Martin’s Place 020 7306 0055 npg.org.uk
Ink Illustration is a London-based collective founded by, unsurprisingly, a group of illustrators. Illustrators who use ink. Rachel Gannon, Fumie Kamijo and Chloe Regan studied together at the Royal College of Art, and formed the group in 2007 with a view to bringing their considerable talent to a variety of creative projects: retail, editorial, workshops, curating and exhibitions. Since they started, both Chloe and Fumie’s fine illustrations have appeared on a number of book covers and pamphlets— while Rachel’s inky drawings will be familiar to anyone who has picked up a tote bag from Tenderpixel’s shop. No shopper could have failed to miss the trio’s mural in Topshop’s flagship store. This particular exhibiton will be the group’s second at Tenderpixel and their third show in Covent Garden this year. What it entails remains to be seen, but you can guarantee at least three things. It will be illustration. It will be inky. It will be good.
The Courtauld has one of the best collections of Spanish drawings in Britain. This exhibition curates the finest of them, picking out some 40 of the most representative and presenting them in the light of important new research. It features great artists—Picasso, Ribera and Goya, among many others—but it also sets out to show just how central sketching was to these prodigious talents. Looking at their later work this is difficult to imagine: Picasso is famous for colour, Goya too was a master of bright pigments. Nevertheless looking at their early work, and that of their compatriots, it becomes increasingly apparent that they stem from the same tradition of precision and detail—even while showing extraordinary variation. From the dark scratchings of Alonso Cano and the red chalk smudge studies of Antonio Garcia Reinoso, right though to Picasso’s early pictures of pigs, this exhibition offers an informative insight into a rich and little explored field.
“Only connect the prose and the passion and both will be exalted, and human love will be seen at its height,” runs that oft-quoted motto of EM Forster’s. Whether the National Portrait Gallery’s forthcoming attempt to connect will fulfil these aims remains an open question, but it is certainly an attempt worth seeing. Spanning three centuries and all manner of portraits and sculptures, Only Connect proposes a network of threads between people of note: composers, artists, doctors, sculptors, poets, engineers. The connections range from the obvious to the deeply obscure and result in the wildest of transitions. Benjamin Britten gets to George Bernard Shaw, for example, via a spiders web of violinists, sculptors, and chance encounters. There is no hierarchy, and marriage is as valid a tie as deep enmity. General wisdom has it that we are all connected by six degrees of separation. Nowhere is this principle more attractively illustrated.
29th September—22nd October /Tenderpixel Gallery
52 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
13th October—15th January /Courtauld Gallery
16th April—27th November /National Portrait Gallery
SenSe And THe ciTy: SMART, connecTed And on THe Move Until 18th March 2012 /London Transport Museum London Transport Museum Covent Garden Piazza ltmuseum.co.uk
It seems there is no end to the puns that can be made from the title of the TV series about those women in that city. Thankfully this latest permutation, from the London Transport Museum, does contain more than a touch of sense. Blessed with the tag line “smart, connected and on the move”, this exhibition explores the emerging technologies that are changing the way we access and experience London. The premise is simple, but so timely one wonders why on earth no one did it sooner— especially given that most people will read about this exhibition online and use their smartphones to find their way there. Using a mixture of art, past futuristic visions and retro technology (1980s brick sized mobile phones being a highlight), the exhibition illustrates how technological development integrates into the fabric of the city. Even those gadgets that have yet to be invented are explored in the Visions of Tomorrow wall where some of tomorrow’s designers present practical ideas for 2020. Some, like the bus stop that suggests alternative routes, seem useful; the scooter that expresses its driver’s mood less so. None of them, however, are as crazy as the spiral escalator, winged buses and taxi airships that were the futuristic visions of yesteryear. 53 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
54 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
55 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
the roxy club
1976—a year of glorious weather and miserable economics—was drawing to a close. In the autumn just gone, the noisy exploits of the Sex Pistols had resulted in the nascent punk scene bursting into the public consciousness like a lit fart. Day after day the tabloid newspapers, desperate for some juicy news that didn’t involve OPEC or unemployment figures, gleefully trumpeted their outrage at the filth and the fury of these colourfully offensive youths. As the Sex Pistols’ Anarchy tour of Britain descended into farce, with Christian groups picketing concert venues and beardy old local councillors appearing on TV, spluttering and gurning in indignation, the young devotees of this thrilling new music found themselves barred from pubs, bars and clubs. What they lacked was a place they could call home; a place where they could dress how they wanted, pogo like lunatics and hawk gobs of phlegm at people they admired. Then along came the Roxy—and over the course of 100 incendiary nights, Covent Garden found itself at the centre of a musical revolution. The Roxy was previously a nightclub called Chaguaramas, which opened on Neal Street in the early 1970s and was originally a reggae club, taking its name from Chaguaramas Bay in Trinidad. It was soon taken over by Swiss millionaire René Albert, who transformed it into a gay club, widely known—with amusing inevitability—as Shaggers. This dark, dingy venue, with its low lighting and leatherette, attracted a heady mix of East End gangsters, Piccadilly rent boys and furtive businessmen. It also attracted the ire of local businesses and residents, unhappy at the influx of “those types of people”, and efforts were being made to have it closed down. By 1976 the owners, who were liable to lose a lot of money, were keen to sell the premises or at least sub-let them to somebody else. One of the occasional habitués of Chaguaramas was Gene October, a part time rent boy who also happened to be the singer in the punk band Chelsea. He approached the club’s management to ask if his band could play there. Desperate for any source of cash, they agreed. Sadly for October, by the time his gig came around he had been kicked out of his own band. His erstwhile bandmates, led by Billy Idol, renamed themselves Generation X and 56 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
took over Gene’s Chaguaramas booking. On 14th December 1976 they made their first appearance at the club, followed the next night by legendary New York hedonists the Heartbreakers. The gigs were promoted by Generation X’s manager, Andy Czezowski, a young south Londoner who had previously worked as Vivienne Westwood’s bookkeeper and spent a short and ill-starred term as the manager of the Damned before falling out with the band during a grim, amphetamine fuelled coach trip through France to play at a disastrous rock festival. Andy and his colleagues promoted the Generation X and Heartbreakers gigs with considerable gusto, providing the staff, supplying the beer, hiring the PA, photocopying the handbills and then praying that enough people would turn up to cover the costs. They did. René Albert— nicknamed ‘the one armed bandit’ by his new tenants—happily banked the punks’ money, then offered Andy and his business partners the chance to rent the club on an ongoing basis for £300 per week, cash in hand, no paperwork offered or asked for. The Roxy, as it was now known (the owners had decided that a change of name was necessary to convince the locals of its new and supposedly less threatening beginnings), officially opened on New Year’s Day 1977. Around 400 punters paid £1.25 each to be packed into the 150-capacity venue. The musical treats on offer included a set from the latest incarnation of Chelsea, with Gene October belatedly enjoying the rewards of having found the venue in the first place. But there was no doubting the real draw that Saturday evening—the Clash. The band played two sets that night, with Joe Strummer resplendent in a white shirt with the legend ‘1977’ spray-painted across the front and wielding a magnificent white Gretsch guitar which had just been flogged to him by a Heartbreaker who needed money for heroin. The only sour note on a night of raucous celebration came from the fact that the band’s cacophonous PA proved too much for the rickety little venue. “It’s a shame,” said Strummer. “We set up the gear really good, and when the audience were all there it sounded really shitty.” Thankfully crystalline sound was never a prerequisite for punk. In the weeks that followed, just about
every punk band in the country appeared at the Roxy, and just about every punter who went to the Roxy formed a punk band of their own. One of the most incendiary performances came on the 13th January, when the Damned literally brought the house down—their pogoing followers ripped down the club’s ceiling tiles in an orgy of exuberant vandalism, but the band, rather than being chided for the excesses of the crowd, were instead offered a regular slot, appearing every Monday night for a month. In truth, a few smashed ceiling tiles were the least of the Roxy’s aesthetic problems. The dark, airless basement room was covered in matt black paint and floor-toceiling mirrors, complete with sticky floors and a few benches around the walls. It was very much a spit and sawdust affair—but with an extraordinary excess of spit, and absolutely no sawdust. The stage was a perilous amalgamation of milk crates and plywood, so the bands were only a couple of feet higher than their audience. This meant that the barriers between performers and punters were minimal, with musicians staggering blindly into the crowd and the pogoing congregation leaping onto the stage. The teenage Shane Macgowan, one of the venue’s most exuberant devotees, could often be found with his head wedged in the speaker stack. The Roxy’s toilets were a hotbed of sexual experimentation, drug taking and makeshift hairdressing facilities. Andy Czezowski once found a couple of kids merrily smashing up one of the toilets. “Hey, it’s your toilet, you can smash it up if you want to,” he told them. “But you’ll have nowhere to piss next weekend.” They smashed it up anyway. The upstairs bar was a little more exclusive than the heaving fleshpit downstairs, with fewer missiles and gobs of phlegm flying around. “The wilder punks hang out downstairs,” wrote Adrian Fox, a 16-year-old punk from Ilford who printed his own fanzine on the photocopiers at the local library and went by the handle of Randy Bollocker, “whereas upstairs is the province of the rich punks, fanzine editors and rock journalists.” Among these were the hip young gunslingers employed by the NME, whose offices were just around the corner on Long Acre, to chronicle the energetic new scene that had landed on its
doorstep—Julie Burchill, Tony Parsons and Nick Kent. The venue sold half-pint cans of distinctly warm Colt 45 lager, but as most of the clientele arrived already fuelled with speed and strong cider, the bar sales never quite reflected the popularity of the venue. Any cans that were sold tended to be used as missiles to throw at bands. Adrian Fox took particular pleasure at pelting the Rejects, whom he loathed, noting in his diary that their lead singer had (with angry capital letters) “LONG HAIR!” This hirsute frontman, Bruno Wizard, would later confront Fox in the ladies’ toilets. “Him: ‘Was it you who threw a paper cup and lager can at me, the other night?’ Me: ‘No, not me, I think you play like shit, but I didn’t throw anything at you, honest!’ He stared at me as if he wanted to kill me, or stuff my head down the bog, or something. Blimey, I was nearly shitting myself! We parted on good terms, though (probably cos I’m only 16!). Bruno reckons that, because the Rejects get such a lot of stick from people, that they’ve now got a judo black belt protecting the band. Shit—a private judo black belt protector!” The list of bands who trod those beersoaked boards between January and April 1977 reads like a Now That’s What I Call Punk Music compilation CD: the Clash, the Damned, the Jam, Wire, Siouxsie & the Banshees, the Adverts, the Stranglers, the Buzzcocks, Squeeze, Sham 69. The Police made some of their earliest appearances at the Roxy in early March, initially providing the backing band for the outrageous New York performer Cherry Vanilla, then performing a set of their own the following evening. Sadly, later that week one of the most unlikely double headers in musical history was cancelled—only the flyers proclaiming “Siouxsie & the Banshees/Iron Maiden” survive. Just about the only major punk band not to play at the Roxy was the Sex Pistols. According to Andy Czezowski, Macolm Maclaren was too much of a control freak to allow his charges to become part of somebody else’s scene. Even the Roxy’s resident DJ would go on to become a giant of British culture—the film maker and musician Don Letts. Letts played a huge part in bringing the sounds of reggae to the punk scene, a fusion that did much to influence the musical 57 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
development of his close friends in the Clash. The fact that the punk scene was in its infancy meant that the DJ had little choice but to introduce the Roxy crowd to other sounds. “There weren’t that many good tunes in punk,” he said. “You could play all the best ones in about 20 minutes.” The Roxy burned bright, but it faded very quickly. As with so many grassroots cultural movements, it was killed by the twin hydras of popularity and greed. As the music press frothed with excitement, the Roxy began to draw a wealthier, less manic crowd from beyond the highly creative, close-knit clique of the early punk bands. This meant queues at the door, queues at the bar and a simmering sense of resentment. “Their hundred pound clothes get on me wick,” wrote Adrian Fox of the new wave of prosperous punks. “They even get their jackets impregnated
with vomit, grease and fuck knows what else! The scummy rich can’t even dirty their own clothes—even THAT has to be done for ‘em. Shitbags.” It wasn’t just the rich kids who were the problem. Football hooligans were being drawn to the area looking to stomp on a punk, fuelled by lager and tabloid lies. Others who ruined the mood of the Roxy included the man who spent an evening cutting himself up with a razor blade in the middle of the dancefloor. Even worse, the doormen had started letting hippies in. One hippy chick tried to seduce the legendary Randy Bollocker in the upstairs bar in April, but he turned her down. “Punk isn’t about love,” he wrote. “Besides—I was scared, cos I’m a virgin.” Many of the better bands were beginning to get bookings at much larger venues than the cramped Neal Street basement, and the quality of the Roxy’s offering started to dip. “There was a demise after the first two or three months,” said Don Letts. “In the last month it did fizzle out.” To make matters worse, the venue was violently robbed after a Stranglers gig, leaving Andy Czezowski and his team locked in a cupboard for over an hour. At the same time, the venue’s leaseholders were looking to cash in. Czezowski told music journalist John Harris: “A chap came out of prison for manslaughter. He was one of the hoodlums who used to come to the club before we had it, and René Albert showed him round. The place was packed full of kids who were buying lager and he must have thought, I’ll have some of this.” With pound signs flashing in the owners’ eyes, Czezowski and his crew found themselves thrown out of the venue after a Siouxsie & the Banshees gig on 24th April 1977. The Roxy carried on under new management for around a year, but the wild excitement had long since dissipated. In the end petitions from local residents to close the venue successfully worked their way through the courts, and the Roxy was forced to close for good. The building in which the club once stood is now a Speedo store. Given the drug of choice of the pogoing masses who once placed this tiny space at the very epicentre of British popular culture, that fact alone is enough to raise a smile.
Accessorize The Market at Covent Garden 22 The Market Building 020 7240 2107 monsoon.co.uk agnès b 35-36 Floral Street 020 7379 1992 agnesb.com Womenswear & menswear All Saints 5 Earlham Street, Seven Dials 020 7179 3749 57 Long Acre 020 7836 0801 allsaints.co.uk Womenswear & menswear Aubin & Wills 12 Floral Street 020 7240 4024 aubinandwills.com Banana Republic 132 Long Acre, St Martin’s Courtyard 020 7836 9567 bananarepublic.gap.eu Womenswear & menswear Barbour 134 Long Acre, St Martin’s Courtyard barbour.com Womenswear & menswear Base 55 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7240 8914 base-fashions.co.uk Womenswear Ben Sherman 49 Long Acre 020 7836 6196 brand.bensherman.com Menswear Betsey Johnson 4-5 Carriage Hall, 29 Floral street 020 7240 6164 betseyjohnson.com Womenswear Birkenstock 70 Neal Street, Seven Dials 020 7240 2783 birkenstock.co.uk Shoes Burberry Brit 41-42 King Street burberry.com Womenswear Calvin Klein 120 Long Acre 020 7240 7582 calvinklein.com Womenswear & menswear Camper 39 Floral Street camper.com Shoes Carhartt 15-17 Earlham Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 1551 carhartt.com Womenswear & menswear
Cos 130-131 Long Acre, St Martin’s Courtyard 020 7632 4190 cosstores.com Crocs 48 Neal Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 2505 crocs.eu Shoes Desa 6 Slingsby Place, St Martin’s Courtyard 020 7836 6055 desa.uk.com Leather & womenswear Diesel 43 Earlham Street, Seven Dials 020 7497 5543 diesel.com Womenswear & menswear Dune 26 James Street 020 7836 1560 dune.co.uk DUO 21 Slingsby Place, St Martin’s Courtyard duoboots.com Footwear East 16 The Piazza 020 7836 6685 east.co.uk Womenswear Eileen Fisher 4 Slingsby Place, St Martin’s Courtyard eileenfisher.com Womenswear Energie & Killah 47-49 Neal Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 7719 energie.it Menswear Fat Face Clothing Thomas Neal’s Centre, 35 Earlham Street, Seven Dials 020 7497 6464 fatface.com Womenswear & menswear Fenchurch 36-38 Earlham Street, Seven Dials 020 7240 1880 fenchurch.com Womenswear & menswear Fifi Wilson 38 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7240 2121 fifiwilson.com Womenswear Firetrap 21-23 Earlham Street, Seven Dials 020 7395 1830 firetrap.net Womenswear & menswear Formes 28 Henrietta Street 020 7240 4777 formes.com Pregnant womenswear
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Fred Perry 14 The Piazza 020 7836 3327 6-8 Thomas Neal’s Centre 020 7836 4513 fredperry.com Womenswear & menswear Freddy 30-32 Neal Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 5291 freddy.it Womenswear & menswear Fullcircle 14 Floral Street 020 7240 8310 fullcircleuk.com Womenswear & menswear Gary Holder 22 Thomas Neal’s Centre, Seven Dials 020 7836 7889 garyholder.com Jewellery G-Star 5-11 Shorts Gardens, Seven Dials 020 7240 3707 g-star.com Womenswear & menswear Hoss Intropia 124 Long Acre 020 7240 4900 hossintropia.com Womenswear Jack Wills 136 Long Acre, St Martin’s Courtyard 020 7240 8946 jackwills.com Jaeger London 2 Slingsby Place, St Martin’s Courtyard 020 3328 9441 jaeger.co.uk Womenswear and menswear Joules 3 Slingsby Place, St Martin’s Courtyard joules.com Womenswear & menswear Kabiri 18 The Market Building 020 7794 0754 kabiri.co.uk Jewellery Karen Millen 22-23 James Street 020 7836 5355 karenmillen.com Womenswear Kurt Geiger 1 James Street kurtgeiger.com Laird London 23 New Row lairdlondon.co.uk Hats Laura Lee 42 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7379 9050 lauraleejewellery.com Jewellery L K Bennett 138 Long Acre, St Martin’s Courtyard 020 7379 9890 lkbennett.com Womenswear
Lollipops 55 Neal Street, Seven Dials lollipops.fr Women’s accessories Lyle & Scott 40 King Street 020 7379 7190 lyleandscott.com Massimo Dutti 125-126 Long Acre, St Martin’s Courtyard 020 7935 0250 massimodutti.com Womenswear & Menswear Mimco 46 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 9826 mimco.com.au Accessories Mint 20 Earlham Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 3440 Vintage clothing Monsoon 5-6 James Street 020 7379 3623 monsoon.co.uk Womenswear Nicole Farhi 11 Floral Street 020 7497 8713 nicolefarhi.com Womenswear & menswear Orla Kiely 31-33 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7240 4022 orlakiely.com Womenswear and homewares Original Penguin 8 North Piazza orginalpenguin.co.uk Menswear and womenswear Pandora 23 Long Acre pandora.net Jewellery Paul Smith 40-44 Floral Street 020 7836 7828 9-11 Langley Court 020 7240 5420 paulsmith.co.uk Womenswear & menswear Pop Boutique 6 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7497 5262 pop-boutique.com Vintage womenswear & menswear Poste Mistress 61-63 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7379 4040 postemistress.co.uk Shoes Pretty Ballerinas 7 Slingsby Place, St Martin’s Courtyard prettyballerinas.com Shoes Replay 32 Long Acre 020 7379 8650 replay.it
Rugby Ralph Lauren 43 King Street rugby.com Womenswear & menswear Santos & Mowen 10 Earlham Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 4365 santosandmowen.com Menswear Size? 37a Neal Street, Seven Dials 020 7379 7853 Shoes Skechers 2-3 James Street uk.skechers.com Shoes Sole 72 Neal Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 6777 sole.co.uk Shoes Stone Island 34 Shelton Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 8402 stoneisland.co.uk Menswear Superga 53 Neal Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 6935 superga.co.uk Shoes Super Superficial 22 Earlham Street, Seven Dials 020 7287 7447 supersuperficial.com Superdry 24-25 & 28 Thomas Neal’s Centre, Seven Dials superdry.co.uk Womenswear & menswear Tatty Devine 44 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials tattydevine.com Jewellery Ted Baker 1-4 Langley Court 020 7497 8862 tedbaker.com Womenswear & menswear Twenty8Twelve 8 Slingsby Place, St Martin’s Courtyard 020 7042 3500 twenty8twelve.com Womenswear Tzar 15 King Street 020 7240 0969 Womenswear UGG Australia Long Acre uggaustralia.com Accessories UNCONDITIONAL + 16 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 6931 unconditional.uk.com Womenswear & menswear Urban Outfitters 42-56 Earlham Street, Seven Dials 020 7759 6390 urbanoutfitters.com Womenswear & menswear
Vilebrequin 9 King Street vilebrequin.com Men’s swimwear Volcom 7 Earlham Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 3353 volcomeurope.com Surf and skate fashion WeSC 35 Neal Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 4473 wesc.com Skate fashion Whistles 24 Long Acre 020 7240 8195 whistles.co.uk Womenswear
health & Beauty
Adee Phelan 29 Shorts Gardens, Seven Dials 020 7240 3777 adeephelan.com Hair & beauty salon Ahava 39 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7240 8815 ahava.co.uk Skincare Bare Escentuals 40 Neal Street, Seven Dials bareescentuals.co.uk Skincare and cosmetics Benefit 19 Shorts Gardens, Seven Dials 020 7379 0316 benefitcosmetics.com Cosmetics The Body Control Pilates Centre 35 Little Russell Street 020 7636 8900 bodycontrol.co.uk Covent Garden Dental Practice 61g Oldham Walk 020 7836 9161 cgdp.com Covent Garden Dental Spa 68a Neal Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 9107 coventgardendentalspa.co.uk Covent Garden Physio Ground Floor, 23-24 Henrietta Street 020 7497 8974 coventgardenphysio.com Physiotherapists The Covent Garden Salon 69 Endell Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 8362 thecoventgardensalon.com Hair & beauty salon Crabtree & Evelyn The Market at Covent Garden 3 The Piazza 020 7836 3110 crabtree-evelyn.co.uk
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Erno Laszlo 13 The Market Building 020 3040 3035 ernolaszlo.com Skincare Good Vibes 14-16 Betterton Street 020 7240 6111 goodvibesfitness.co.uk Power Plate fitness studio Hair By Fairy 8-10 Neal’s Yard, Seven Dials 020 7497 0776 hairbyfairy.com Hair & beauty salon Karine Jackson 24 Litchfield Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 0300 karinejackson.co.uk Hair & beauty salon Kiehl’s 29 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7240 2411 kiehls.com Skincare L’Artisan Parfumeur 13 The Market Building 020 3040 3030 artisanparfumeur.com Perfume L’Occitane 6 The Market Building 020 7379 6040 Lush 11 The Market Building 020 7240 4570 lush.co.uk Mac 38 Neal Street, Seven Dials 020 7379 6820 maccosmetics.com Cosmetics Melvita 17 Slingsby Place, St Martin’s Courtyard uk.melvita.com Skincare Miller Harris 14 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 9378 millerharris.com Molton Brown Emporium 18 Russell Street 020 7240 8383 moltonbrown.co.uk Skincare & cosmetics Murdock 18 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 3393 7946 murdocklondon.com Barbers Neal’s Yard Remedies 15 Neal’s Yard, Seven Dials 020 7739 7222 nealsyardremedies.com Natural remedies & skincare Nickel 27 Shorts Gardens, Seven Dials 020 7240 4048 nickelspalondon.co.uk Men only spa
Pro Health Store 16 Drury Lane 020 7240 1639 pro-healthstore.co.uk Sports nutrition and health supplements relax 7 Mercer Street, St Martin’s Courtyard 020 7871 4567 relax.org.uk Beauty and massage centre The Sanctuary 12 Floral Street 0870 770 3350 thesanctuary.co.uk Women only spa Sanrizz 4 Upper St Martin’s Lane 020 7379 8022 sanrizz.co.uk Sassoon 45a Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7240 6635 sassoon.com Hair salon Screen Face 48 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 3955 screenface.com Cosmetics Shu Uemura 24 Neal Street, Seven Dials 020 7240 7635 shu-uemura.co.jp Skincare & cosmetics Space NK 32 Shelton Street, Seven Dials 020 7379 6384 spacenk.co.uk Skincare & cosmetics Stuart Phillips 25 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7379 5304 stuartphillips.co.uk Hair salon Toni & Guy 4 Henrietta Street 020 7240 7342 toniandguy.com Trevor Sorbie 27 Floral Street 0844 445 6901 trevorsorbie.com Hair salon Walk in Back Rub Neal’s Yard, Seven Dials 020 7836 9111 walkinbackrub.co.uk Massage
Aram Designs 3 Kean Street 020 7240 3933 aram.co.uk Furniture Artbox 14 Thomas Neal’s Centre, Seven Dials 020 7240 0097 artbox.co.uk Fun accessories
retail continued Berghaus 13 Shorts Gardens, Seven Dials 020 7379 9313 berghaus.com Outdoor clothing and accessories Cath Kidston 28-32 Shelton Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 4803 cathkidston.co.uk Homewares Coco de Mer 23 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 8882 coco-de-mer.com Womens erotic boutique Covent Garden Academy of Flowers 9 Slingsby Place, St Martin’s Courtyard 020 7240 6359 academyofflowers.com Flower design courses The Dover Bookshop 18 Earlham Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 2111 doverbooks.co.uk Design books Ellis Brigham 3-11 Southampton Street 020 7395 1010 ellis-brigham.com Mountain sports Field & Trek 64 Long Acre 020 7379 8167 42 Maiden Lane 020 7379 3793 fieldandtrek.com Outdoor pursuits Kathmandu 26 Henrietta Street 020 7379 4748 kathmandu.co.uk Outdoor pursuits Kidrobot 19 Earlham Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 4074 kidrobot.com Designer toys Kirk Originals 29 Floral Street 020 7240 5055 kirkoriginals.com Eyewear London Marathon Shop 63 Long Acre 020 7240 1244 londonmarathonstore.com Running equipment The North Face 30-32 Southampton Street 020 7240 9577 thenorthface.com Outdoor pursuits SJ Dent 34 Great Queen Street 020 7242 6018 sjdent.com Sporting memorabilia Slam City Skates 16 Neal’s Yard, Seven Dials 020 7240 0928 slamcity.com Skateboarding equipment
Specialized Cycles 11 Mercer Street, St Martin’s Courtyard specializedconceptstore.co.uk Bikes and cycling equipment Spex in the City 1 Shorts Gardens, Seven Dials 020 7240 0243 spexinthecity.com Eyewear Stanfords 12-14 Long Acre 020 7836 1321 stanfords.co.uk Maps Time2 128 Long Acre 020 7292 1247 time2.co.uk Watches The Tintin Shop 34 Floral Street 020 7836 1131 thetintinshop.uk.com Tintin memorabilia Treadwell’s Bookshop 34 Tavistock Street, Opera Quarter 020 7240 8906 treadwells-london.com Herbals The White Company 5 Slingsby Place, St Martin’s Courtyard 020 8166 0200 thewhitecompany.com Homewares
Food retailers & caFes
Battersea Pie Station 28 The Market Building 020 7240 9566 batterseapiestation.co.uk Pies Ben’s Cookies The Market at Covent Garden 13a The Market Building 020 7240 6123 benscookies.com Bougie Macaron 3 Russell Street, Opera Quarter 020 7836 4980 bougie.co.uk Candy Cakes 36 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 30 The Market Building, Lower Courtyard 020 7497 8979 candycakes.eu Bakery Crème de la Crepe 29 The Market Building, Lower Courtyard 020 7836 6896 cremedelacrepe.co.uk Crepes Double Shot Coffee Company 38 Tavistock Street, Opera Quarter 020 7240 9742 doubleshotcoffee.co.uk Ella’s Bakehouse 20a The Market Building ellasbakehouse.com
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Euphorium Bakery Thomas Neal’s Centre, Seven Dials, 020 7379 3608 euphoriumbakery.com Bakery Frances Hilary 42 The Market Building 020 7836 3135 franceshilary.com Gardening Gelatorino 2 Russell Street, Opera Quarter gelatorino.com Italian gelato Hope and Greenwood 1 Russell Street, Opera Quarter 020 7240 3314 hopeandgreenwood.co.uk Sweets Kastner & Ovens 52 Floral Street 020 7379 6428 Bakers Ladurée 1 The Market Building laduree.fr Macarones Monmouth Coffee 27 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7379 3516 monmouthcoffee.co.uk Coffee Mr Simm’s Olde Sweet Shop 25 New Row 020 7240 2341 Sweets Neal’s Yard Dairy 17 Shorts Gardens, Seven Dials 020 7240 5700 nealsyarddairy.co.uk Cheese New York Deli The Market at Covent Garden 24 The Piazza 020 7379 3253 Notes Music & Coffee 31 St Martins Lane 7240 0242 notesmusiccoffee.com Coffee shop Patisserie Valerie 15 Bedford Street 020 7379 6428 patisserie-valerie.co.uk Patisserie Primrose Bakery 42 Tavistock Street, Opera Quarter primrosebakery.org.uk Cakes Scoop 40 Shorts Gardens, Seven Dials 020 7240 7086 Italian gelato Sweet Couture 23a New Row sweetcouture.co.uk Cupcakes, cakes and small bites The Tea House 15a Neal Street, Seven Dials 020 7240 7539 Tea
Tea Palace 12 The Market Building 020 7836 6997 teapalace.co.uk Tea Tea Pod 22 Wellington Street, Opera Quarter 020 7240 5550 teapodtea.co.uk Whittard The Market at Covent Garden 38 The Market Building whittard.co.uk 020 7836 7681 Yu-foria Frozen Yoghurt Co 19a The Market Building, Lower Courtyard 020 7240 5532 yu-foria.com Frozen yoghurt
Axis at One Aldwych 1 Aldwych 020 7300 0300 onealdwych.com Modern British Belgo Centraal 50 Earlham Street, Seven Dials 020 7813 2233 belgo-restaurants.co.uk Belgian Bill’s 13 Slingsby Place, St Martin’s Courtyard 020 7240 8183 bills-website.co.uk Cafe & deli Boulevard Brasserie 38-40 Wellington Street 020 7240 2992 boulevardbrasserie.co.uk Modern European Busaba Eathai 44 Floral Street busaba.com Thai Café des Amis Bar & Restaurant 11-14 Hanover Place, Long Acre 020 7379 3444 cafedesamis.co.uk French Canela 33 Earlham Street, Seven Dials 020 7240 6926 canelacafe.com Portugese/Brazilian Cantina Laredo 10 Upper St Martin’s Lane, St Martin’s Courtyard 020 7240 0630 cantinalaredo.co.uk Mexican Carluccio’s Garrick Street 020 7836 0990 carluccios.com Italian Chez Gerard 45 The Market Building 020 7379 0666 chezgerard.com French
CHLOE HOLDSWORTH LOCATION SHELTON STREET WHY ARE YOU HERE? WORKING AT COMPTON SALON WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE COVENT GARDEN SHOP? ZARA
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restaurants continued Christophers American Bar & Grill 18 Wellington Street, Opera Quarter 020 7240 4222 christophersgrill.com Modern American Clos Maggiore 33 King Street 020 7379 9696 Quality food French Côte 17-21 Tavistock Street, Opera Quarter 020 7379 9991 cote-restaurants.co.uk French bistro Dishoom 12 Upper St Martin’s Lane, St Martin’s Courtyard 020 7420 9320 dishoom.com Bombay cafe Le Deuxieme 65a Long Acre 020 7379 0033 ledeuxieme.com Modern European The Forge 14 Garrick Street 020 7379 1432 theforgerestaurant.com Modern European Great Queen Street 32 Great Queen Street 020 7242 0622 British Hawksmoor Seven Dials 11 Langley Street 020 7856 2154 thehawksmoor.co.uk Steak and cocktails Hi Sushi Izakaya 27 Catherine Street, Opera Quarter restaurantprivilege.com Japanese The Ivy 1-5 West Street 020 7836 4751 the-ivy.co.uk Modern European The Marquis 51/52 Chandos Place themarquiswc2n.co.uk Pub classics J Sheekey 28-32 St Martin’s Court 020 7240 2565 j-sheekey.co.uk Fish and seafood Jamie’s Italian 11 Upper St Martin’s Lane St Martin’s Courtyard 020 3326 6390 jamieoliver.com Kitchen Italia 41 Earlham Street, Seven Dials 020 7632 9500 kitchen-italia.com
Kopapa 32-34 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials kopapa.co.uk 20 7240 6076 Fusion food L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon 13-15 West Street 020 7010 8600 joel-robuchon.com French Le Deux Salons 40-42 William IV Stree 020 7420 2050 lesdeuxsalons.co.uk French Livebait 21 Wellington Street, Opera Quarter 020 7836 7161 livebaitrestaurants.co.uk Fish and seafood Loch Fyne Restaurant & Oyster Bar 2-4 Catherine Street, Opera Quarter 020 7240 4999 lochfyne.com Fish and seafood Masala Zone 48 Floral Street 020 7379 0101 masalazone.com Indian Mon Plaisir 21 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 7243 monplaisir.co.uk French Opera Tavern 23 Catherine Street, Opera Quarter 020 7836 3680 operatavern.co.uk Tapas Palm Court Brasserie 39 King Street palmcourtbrasserie.co.uk French PJ’s 30 Wellington Street, Opera Quarter 020 7240 7529 pjscoventgarden.co.uk Bar and grill Porters English Restaurant 17 Henrietta Street 020 7836 6466 porters.uk.com British Restorante Aurora 3 Catherine Street, Opera Quarter 020 7836 7585 Italian Rossopomodoro 50-52 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials 020 7240 9095 rossopomodoro.co.uk Italian Rules 35 Maiden Lane 020 7836 5314 rules.co.uk British Sagar 31 Catherine Street, Opera Quarter 020 7836 6377 gosagar.com
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Sarastro 126 Drury Lane 020 7836 0101 sarastro-restaurant.com Turkish/Mediterranean Simurgh 17 Garrick Street 020 7240 7811 simurgh.co.uk Persian Sitaaray 167 Drury Lane 020 7269 6422 sitaaray.com Indian Sofra 36 Tavistock Street, Opera Quarter 020 7240 3773 sofra.co.uk Turkish Sophie’s Steakhouse 29-31 Wellington Street 020 7836 8836 sophiessteakhouse.co.uk Steak Souk Medina 1a Shorts Gardens, Seven Dials 020 7240 1796 soukrestaurant.net North African Strada 13-15 Tavistock Street, Opera Quarter 020 3077 1127 strada.co.uk Pizza SUDA 23 Slingsby Place, St Martin’s Courtyard 020 7240 8010 suda-thai.com Thai Wahaca 66 Chandos Place 020 7240 1883 wahaca.com Mexican World Food Café 1st Floor 14 Neal Street 020 7379 0298 World Food
Arts Theatre 6/7 Great Newport Street 020 7836 2132 artsheatrelondon.com Theatre The Courtauld Gallery Somerset House Strand 020 7848 2526 courtauld.ac.uk Gallery Donmar Warehouse 41 Earlham Street 0870 060 6624 ddonmarwarehouse.com Theatre The Funny Side 33-35 Wellington Street 0870 446 0616 thefunnyside.info Stand up comedy
Grosvenor Prints 19 Shelton Street, Seven Dials 020 7836 1979 grosvenorprints.com Antique prints London Coliseum St Martin’s Lane 020 7632 8300 eno.org Opera London Transport Museum Covent Garden Piazza 020 7565 7298 ltmuseum.co.uk Noel Coward St Martin’s Lane 0844 482 5141 delfontmackintosh.co.uk Theatre Novello Theatre Aldwych 0870 950 0940 novellotheatre.com Theatre The Poetry Cafe 22 Betterton Sreet 020 7420 9887 poetrysoc.com Poetry Royal Opera House Bow Street 0207 240 1200 royalopera.org Opera Somerset House Strand 020 7845 4600 somersethouse.org.uk Tenderpixel Gallery 10 Cecil Court 020 73799464 tenderpixel.com Visual arts Vaudeville Theatre 404 Strand vaudeville-theatre.co.uk Theatre
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63 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011
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Uk Large Lettings Agency of the Year 2011 Gold Award Large Lettings Agency of the Year 2010 Gold Award Luxury Lettings Agency of the Year 2010 Silver Award National Estate Agent of the Year 2010
Ridgmount Street WC1E £750 per week
Great Queen Street WC2B £675 per week
Whitehall SW1A £500 per week
Bedford Avenue WC1B £315 per week
A rare opportunity to rent this interior designed modern apartment found perfect for the delights of Fitzrovia & Covent Garden. Comprising reception, open plan kitchen, 2 bedrooms, bathroom with tub and shower & air conditioning.
A stunning 1st floor newly refurbished apartment found in this highly prestigious portered block moments from Trafalgar Square. The property boasts a 19ft reception, separate kitchen, double bedroom, bathroom & wooden flooring.
Lettings 020 7379 5300
A newly refurbished duplex apartment set in the heart of Covent Garden. Comprising reception, fully fitted kitchen, 2 double bedrooms, modern bathroom with bath & shower, hard wood floors & double ceiling height.
A well presented apartment found within this sought after portered mansion block located next to the British Museum just off Tottenham Court Road. Comprises reception open plan fully fitted kitchen, separate sleeping area & shower room
Queen Square, Bloomsbury WC1N £2,250,000 share of freehold
John Adam Street, Strand WC2n £1,295,000 leasehold
An outstanding 2 bedroom apartment, styled and appointed to an exceptional standard. Bespoke handmade fitted kitchen & 2 luxurious bathrooms. Enviable setting overlooking Queen Square gardens.
A spacious & contemporary 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom apartment positioned on the 3rd floor of this desirable development in a handsome period conversion. Superb location just off the Strand.
Upper St Martins Lane, Covent Garden WC2H
Tavistock Street, Covent Garden WC2E £445,000 leasehold
Superb 1 bedroom apartment with secure underground parking, in a exclusive & sought after development. Large living room & separate kitchen, both enjoying a magnificent outlook.
A lovely 1 bedroom apartment positioned on the 4th floor of this popular and enviably located building, on the corner of Tavistock Street & Drury Lane close to the Royal Opera House & Piazza.
65 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011 email@example.com Sales 020 7836 2888
Harmony Korine Louise Bourgeois
Claude Lévêque www.agnesb.com 66 Covent Garden Journal Issue 13 Autumn 2011