Whitbread locks horns with casual dining stalwarts as new brand gets lift off

Bar + Block King's Cross artist's impression

A new steak-focused casual dining brand launched by Whitbread is to get its second site – and first in London – before the end of the year.

Bar + Block is the hospitality giant’s latest effort at expanding its business in the all-day casual dining sector and it debuted in Birmingham earlier this year.

The concept will now be extended to the capital with the launch of a branch in King’s Cross this November. More outlets are set to follow between now and the end of Whitbread’s financial year in March.

Whitbread picked the site next to King’s Cross and St Pancras International as it 120 million visitors pass through it annually.

The 5,522 square-foot, 212 cover King’s Cross site has been developed by Harrison Design, and will include a 68-cover central feature bar with copper detailing, a large open kitchen, branded mosaic signage at the entrance and a mix of stand-alone seating and leather booths.

Exposed brick walls will showcase a number of contemporary artwork pieces including their signature neon cow signage and preserved moss ‘Hello’ sign, as well as wall calligraphy detailing the Bar + Block brand story.

Whitbread has positioned Bar + Block as an informal all-day dining venue serving breakfast, lunch and dinner with an emphasis on high quality steaks at affordable prices all hand-cut to order.

The ‘Butcher’s Block’ will feature a range of rotating specials. Bar + Block will also offer an extensive drinks list, with a focus on craft beers and ciders from Brew Dog, innovative cocktails and a specially curated wine list.

David Murdin, COO of brand developments at Whitbread Restaurants, said: “We’re very excited to be launching our flagship site in London following its success in Birmingham. We’re keen to develop the brand further, and aim to have several venues open by the end of this financial year.”

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