Things to do in London this weekend (14 – 16 June)

The best summer days lead to long summer nights. London looks and feels its best when the daytime sun stretches into a warm evening, allowing for rooftop lingering and nights out. Or, to put it plainly, there is a chance to Go Out.

This weekend is full of those chances. New restaurant openings and old favorites are, naturally, down to a big night celebrating pirate radio and UK garage, and possibly the weirdest late-night comedy show in town. There’s also a Soho drinking den, a great new play in Hammersmith and the launch of a new art exhibition (with cocktails, of course).

Summer nights don’t get much better.

The hot table: Carmel

    (Steven Joyce)

(Steven Joyce)

The original Carmel in Queens Park is all blush pink tiles and big mirrors, soft furnishings and long lazy lunches. The newer Fitzrovia outpost takes over the old La Rampa site, just behind Oxford Street and is a greener business altogether. Polished and buffed, the menu gets a bit of a lift in the second location as well, with the dishes still accessible. Most items are priced between £10 and £16 and should be more than enough for a small handful to share, with the large flatbread with peppers and sundried tomatoes and Levantine beef and eggs feel like good places to start.

Market Place, W1W 8AG,

Old favorite: Pastaio



It’s always a pleasure to visit a favorite old man, especially when you prefer to make rich bowls of homemade pasta to tide you over. This is hearty, hearty food; Fried nduja and mozzarella sandwiches are a must to start things off, before a bowl (or three) of pasta, which changes regularly enough to keep everyone coming back for more. The bright room can accommodate those looking for a quick meal in 20 minutes, but is comfortable enough for those inclined to wait longer. Stevie Parle knows how to do a restaurant, and we’re eagerly awaiting his new location, rumored to be coming to the West End later this summer.

19 Ganton Street, W1F 9BN,

The drinking den: Bar Crispin

    (Karolina Bajda)    (Karolina Bajda)

(Karolina Bajda)

The Ham group is in rich form. Bistro Freddie and Crispin at Studio Voltaire are the two latest ventures to find success in town, but Bar Crispin (from the same team) remains a central London drinking spot of note. Yes, there is food, but come for the wine list. The by-the-glass offer is strong but for the best value, get a friend or so together and pick a few bottles of low-intervention wine. Not only will this strategy work for better value per person, but you’ll get out and drink a lot more.

19 King Street, W1B 5PY,

The gig: A History of UK Pirate Radio at Jazz Cafe

    (© Photography by Rob Jones)    (© Photography by Rob Jones)

(© Photography by Rob Jones)

Throughout June, Camden’s Jazz Cafe will host a series of club nights focusing on pirate radio and its influence on the UK music scene. Covering different genres over different nights, from grime to dubstep and funk, UKG (UK garage) is this weekend’s offering. Expect DJ Spoony and Wookie at this throwback club night celebrating the best of garage and its contribution to the wider UK scene, as well as the pirate radio scene that gave these genres their was coming up again and again.

14 June, 5 Parkway, NW1 7PG,

The chef residency: Chap Bistro

Angus Kitchin has set up shop in the Haggerston, vibe-forward E8 pub. The residency is called Chap’s Bistro, and the man at the helm has some serious stuff: Kitchin is perhaps best known for his time leading the kitchen at FKABAM. The menu is French, but British produce is coming through. Carpaccio-like melon arrives with almond and flecks of ricotta followed by a pig’s head croquette in a crunchy, slippery, delightful delight. Take a hungry friend, order everything on the menu, and thank us later.

438 Kingsland Road, E8 4AA, @chapbistro.e8

The artistic repair: the Courtauld Lates, the summer of Art

    (Via Courtauld Gallery)    (Via Courtauld Gallery)

(Via Courtauld Gallery)

This weekend, the Courtauld gallery relaunches its “lates” program with a first look at the brand new show: Roger Mayne, Youth. Also hanging is the Henry Moore exhibition, and the amazing permanent collection (one of the best in London really). Guests of the late-night show can delve into evocative photographs of Mayne’s mid-century catalogue, brilliantly curated to tell the story of young people in post-war Britain. Cocktails and art talks combined with live music and masterpieces – what more could you want?

14 June, Somerset House, WC2R 0RN,

The culture setting: Wedding Band

Saskia Holness, Poppy Graham, Diveen Henry, Deborah Ayorinde and Bethan Mary-James in Wedding Band (Mark Senior)Saskia Holness, Poppy Graham, Diveen Henry, Deborah Ayorinde and Bethan Mary-James in Wedding Band (Mark Senior)

Saskia Holness, Poppy Graham, Diveen Henry, Deborah Ayorinde and Bethan Mary-James in Wedding Band (Mark Senior)

This American drama from the sixties is presented strongly at the Lyric in Hammersmith, its first UK production on this scale. Telling the love story of a mixed-race couple in 1918, South Carolina, the distant conflict in Europe is the backdrop to a battle for rights and race at home. The Standard’s theater critic Nick Curtis has called it “remarkable”, and this show is only on for a limited time.

Until 29 June, Lyric Square, King Street, W6 0QL,

Comedy fix: Frankie Thompson at the Soho Theatre

The incident happened at the end of Paul Currie's hour-long show at the Soho Theater (John Stillwell/PA) (PA Archive)The incident happened at the end of Paul Currie's hour-long show at the Soho Theater (John Stillwell/PA) (PA Archive)

The incident happened at the end of Paul Currie’s hour-long show at the Soho Theater (John Stillwell/PA) (PA Archive)

Frankie Thompson is taking over. CAttS is a one-woman show of the musical Cats, except, not the same. The show itself is described as a “lip-synced ballet of distractions and obsessions,” which sounds about as timely as can be in today’s world of distractions and obsessions. Then there’s Frankie Thompson Collects Horrible Things, his other new show. This double bill is for June 15, but the two shows can also be booked separately. It all sounds weird and wonderful, probably why Thompson warns “if you laugh, it’s comedy, if you don’t, it’s live art”.

14 and 15 June, 21 Dean StreetW1D 3NE,

The ticket to book now (for later): Bordeaux one-day elementary school

    (Via Berry Bros.)    (Via Berry Bros.)

(Via Berry Bros.)

This one is a blowout. For anyone looking to step up their wine game (and we really mean it) or give their dad the best Father’s Day gift ever, this is for you. Berry Bros is renowned for its events and tastings, and this special one-day crash course is sure to leave anyone with a legacy. More than a dozen of Bordeaux’s best wines will be available at a masterclass tasting and lunch featuring the region’s most famous vineyards and vignerons. These highly sought after wines can fetch over £300 a bottle so the tickets aren’t cheap – but for a blowout, nothing beats Bordeaux.

29 June, tickets £395, 63 Pall Mall, St. James’s, SW1Y 5HZ,

The other ticket to book now (for later): Bubala Pride Party

    (Haydon Perrier)    (Haydon Perrier)

(Haydon Perrier)

Bubula is turning five this June and to mark the occasion​​​​​​, the vegetarian Middle Eastern restaurant is hosting a range of chefs at its Soho site to collaborate on special menus. The likes of Crispin’s Lewis de Haas and Mambow’s Abby Lee have already appeared and at the end of the month, Sager & Wilde’s Diarmuid Goodwin will co-host a charity Pride Party, with all money raised going to an LBGTQ+ charity . There will be a huge raffle that night with prizes ranging from full dinners to bumper hampers; each meal ticket is equal to one raffle entry and profits will go to The Outdoor Project.

30 June, 15 Poland Street, W1F 8QE, seven

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