After 15 months in the making, Center Point’s brand new Arcade Food Hall will feature a nine-cuisine menu developed by JKS Restaurants, the group behind a suite of London’s most popular and well-known restaurants. It will open on Friday, April 22, with dishes ranging from modern British sandwiches and jalapeno fried chicken to outrageous jellies, nori sandos and seafood tapas.
Among the kitchens will be an exclusive JKS North Indian fast food kitchen based on Islam, a cult street food in Delhi’s Muslim Quarter that only serves iterations of butter chicken; perhaps the most exciting American fast food since #MeatEasy as Bake Street’s Feroz Gajia brings his smashburgers and Nashville hots to central London from Clapton; a seafood tapas counter from Sabor’s Nieves Barragan and juicy, generously wrapped sandwiches from Margot and Hector Henderson of Rochelle Canteen.
And in addition to a whole slew of new kitchens, new chefs and dishes replacing those that originally opened at the flashy, glass-encased food court in 2019, JKS has implemented a completely different service model at Arcade: it will act much more like a multi-kitchen. sit-down restaurant (one with 380 covers) than a free-for-all food hall, where customers can reserve a table, and from this allocated space, order at any or all of the nine separate outposts of the site. The food will then be transported from the kitchens to the seated guests.
Along with making these changes – “the days of people waiting in line are over” – creative director Karam Sethi told Eater that he “wanted influential chefs, we wanted the flavors to be familiar, but with great originality. Well seasoned; punchy flavors. Catering quality in a food hall. Here’s an overview of the cuisines, their menus, and some key dishes to watch out for in Arcade Food Hall:
Hero is a North Indian street food/fast food featuring the chatpatta flavors of Delhi and wider Punjab.
Hero is the brainchild of Karam Sethi (JKS’s K), who led the appointment of all chefs and the development of all kitchens in the new Arcade look. The food will most closely resemble that served at the Brigadiers BBQ Restaurant, where hot, sour, sweet, hot, salty and smoky flavors and tastes are evenly distributed. As such, the cuisine will particularly emphasize the cult Punjabi makhani sauce, rich in tomatoes, fenugreek, cashews, cream and a powerful kabab masala.
There will be butter chicken pao (sliders); Wagyu keema pao; aloo gobi vada pao; masala fries chaat; and butter chicken wings, smothered in a rich, tangy sauce.
About this cuisine, Sethi told Eater that her goal is to be seen as an “Indian KFC or McDonalds.”
Burger and fried chicken cuisine “inspired by US dine-in culture”, which sees Feroz Gajia, former Eater London contributor and chef-owner of Bake Street in Clapton, teaming up with JKS Restaurants on a kitchen which promises to be the most exciting American fast food to emerge since the #Meateasy of the early 2010s.
The smashed burger will see a remorseless beef patty on the griddle, joined inside a steamed bun with American cheese, pickles, mustard and ketchup. Along with that, there will be hot Nashville offerings, a jalapeno popper fried chicken bun and a hot honey chicken sandwich.
Berenjak’s Kian Samyani pop shawarma bar will see the signature dish of khobez bread stuffed with chicken shawarma and marinated lamb doner. The menu will also feature a range of Middle Eastern mezze.
Sabor’s little Michelin-starred sister site by Nieves Barragan and José Etura. The menu offers classic tapas as well as seafood specialties that change daily. Shrimp, clams, razors, scallops and oysters are among the fresh catches that will fill the seafood display behind the counter. Saborcito dishes can also be eaten in a 10-seat bar, and customers can either leave the experience in the hands of the chefs or choose to order from a menu.
A new sushi bar developed by the founders of Yashin Sushi and JKS. Alongside a weekly changing sushi menu available for the food hall, Sushi Kamon will offer a reservable 8-seat counter for a traditional omakase experience, where sushi chefs prepare a bespoke menu for guests.
For the dining room as a whole, the kitchen will offer nori sandos, stacked with sushi rice and shrimp tempura.
A new sandwich shop and bakery open from 8am each morning, serving Margot’s Pride, an exclusive range of sandwiches from Margot and Hector Henderson of Shoreditch’s Rochelle Canteen, as well as seasonal pastries from James Lowe and Helen Evans’s Flor Bakery; the coffee will be sourced from Origin, one of the UK’s top roasters
This daytime cuisine will also have a nocturnal allure: in the evening, expect Provisions Lates, with hot sandwiches (mutton and anchovies; cheese toast) from Henderson and a few negronis.
Arcade’s desserts come from Jelladrome, an eye-catching and elaborate concession from Bompas & Parr and JKS restaurants. It hosts Benham & Froud, the fine British Jelly brand serving up architectural trifles to share layered with jelly, blancmange and other things that wouldn’t seem out of place at Abigail’s party.
In addition to the kitchens above, Chef Luke Farrell, as previously announced, will be taking charge of Bebek! Bebek!, a spot that focuses on Indonesian fried poultry, served with sweet and sour sambals.
Farrell’s main post, however, will be at the 55-seat restaurant, Plaza Khao Gaeng, which will have its own entrance and overlook the rest of the dining hall.
“This is the most exciting project I’ve worked on,” Sethi said. “Diversity, building brands, working with new partners. It’s been one of the funniest times I’ve had in the past 13 years since I’ve been with JKS.