ISSUE 21  |  Cottages + Color

Restaurant Visit: Rochelle Canteen in London

May 25, 2011 5:30 PM

BY Christine Chang Hanway

A recent meal at the Rochelle Canteen—where The Secret Garden meets modern British cuisine—reminded me how fortunate I am that London is my home. Located in Shoreditch, the heart of East London, and owned by famed caterers Arnold & Henderson (Melanie and Margot, wives of Jon Spiteri and Fergus Henderson of St. John's fame), the Rochelle Canteen is located on the campus of Rochelle School; a school in centuries past and now a thriving center of creative studios. For more information, go to Arnold and Henderson.

Above: The Rochelle School was built in 1899 for the children of Bethnal Green's Boundary Estate.

Above: The original entryway; to gain admittance, push the buzzer labeled "Canteen."

Above: A refuge from the busy streetscape of Shoreditch: a path leads you through the grassy courtyard to the restaurant.

Above: The restaurant itself is located in a converted bike shed with folding glass doors.

Above: The 30-seat dining room features whitewashed walls and an open industrial kitchen.

Above: A whitewashed brick wall is outfitted with Shaker pegs for coat and hat hanging.

Above: Rows of vintage Ercol chairs; my personal favorite iconic midcentury piece. Photo via Eggbeater.

Above: The Alvar Aalto-designed dining tables from Artek are topped with white laminate.

Above: The offerings include simple, classic English fare (see today's menu).

Above: A vintage earthenware bowl holds books of matches.

Above: The vintage stacking chairs were designed by Ercol in 1957.

Above: Garden blooms arranged in vintage pewter tankards.

Photos via Flickr and Rochelle Canteen.