bar & restaurant

194 Bermondsey Street
London SE1
tel: 020 7407 5719 for reservations

Open Monday – Friday 12.00-3, 6.30-10.30pm;
Saturday 9.30-3.30 and 6.30-10.30
Sunday 9.30-3.30pm
Party bookings available
We now take American Express

Fr3sh Vape Mod


Bermondsey Kitchen was built in November 2002 by Dela Foster, who worked in the retail and catering industries for six years before launching her own business. She spent a year looking for the right site for her new restaurant. ‘I considered most parts of London,’ she says, ‘and at every party I went to, I asked people where they lived and if they liked it. One friend was particularly persistent, praising the merits of his own neighbourhood of Borough above all other places in London. So I started to look in Borough. And then I found Bermondsey Street. I fell in love with the church and rectory across the street from our site as soon as I saw them.’ The site was originally an engineering workshop, which was converted into offices, and then transformed again into a restaurant.

The street

Most of the area surrounding Bermondsey Street was bombed out in the war, but somehow this street and its church managed to escape destruction. It is a very old part of London, having originally been a slum area on the outskirts of the old City. The antiques market on Bermondsey Square has been going for centuries, and still gathers on a Friday at four in the morning. Apparently, the early start is due to an old law that stated that before dawn, you could not be prosecuted for trading in goods of dubious origin. Many of the existing buildings on Bermondsey Street are 17th or 18th century, and yet there are also fantastic modern buildings like the Fashion and Textile Museum. The restaurant itself is built on the site of a 10th century Abbey, and next to the church is a Trompe l’Oeil – a flat façade painted to resemble a far grander and bigger building. Now there is a great buzz about the place, as new companies move into the area, architects, designers, PR, IT and fashion companies.

The kitchen

The kitchen team was set up by Ruth Quinlan who worked for many years at The Eagle in Farringdon and wrote a recipe column for Metro as well as compiling the Eagle cookbook, Big Flavours and Rough Edges. Having always nurtured a desire to have her own restaurant in Spain, Ruth has now followed her heart and is looking for suitable premises in Ibiza. She passed the kitchen on to Adam Hicks, our sous chef since Bermondsey Kitchen opened. Adam was one of the first generation of chefs trained at Butler’s Wharf Chef School. He worked at Quaglinos and Joe Allen before becoming sous chef at The Honest Cabbage. He shares Ruth’s no-nonsense style, and passion for simply but lovingly prepared food.

The ingredients

We pride ourselves on the ingredients that we use in our kitchen. Fish is brought daily from Essex – wherever possible we use unendangered species. Meat is supplied by The Ginger Pig who sell in Borough Market and Marylebone High Street. Tim Wilson’s farm in North Yorkshire specialises in the traditional rare breeds of Longhorn cows, Tamworth pigs, and Swaledale lambs. These are bred for flavour rather than convenience or the mass market. Rare breeds thrive under a non-intensive system of farm management, systems which are better for the environment, human health and the welfare of the animals. The succulence and flavour of these meats cannot be compared with anything that is mass produced. The slightly higher fat content in these breeds is one of the reasons for the exceptional flavour. In the last 200 years, many rare breeds have already been lost, for instance Cumberland, Ulster White and Yorkshire blue pigs. In supporting the farmers who bread these animals, we can help to prevent more becoming extinct.

Bermondsey Kitchen‘s unusually open kitchen (probably the most visible in London) emphasises the transparency of food sourcing and preparation which we have focussed on since the beginning. The smokiness of the charcoal grill is the perfect partner for our richly flavoured meats and fish.