Friday, August 31, 2012

Recent arrivals - Summer 2012

So some of these places have been here for a while, but in case you missed them here’s what’s opened, closed or changed in King’s Cross in the last few months:

Shrimpy’s and KXFS

Improbably located in the shop of the old Goods Way BP filling station, Shrimpy’s brought a foody frenzy to King’s Cross with its soft shell crab burger. A few weeks later, KXFS arrived in the covered forecourt with a more down-to-earth booze and pizza offering along with an interesting events programme.

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Shrimpy’s

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KXFS (Kings Cross Filling Station)
 

Granary Square and Caravan

With its child-friendly fountains and steps down to the canal, Granary Square is a space as large as Trafalgar Square that’s hosted a number of successful events over the summer, from Eurostar Traction to the King’s Cross Ice Cream Festival. Overlooking the square is Caravan, which opened in mid-August, a restaurant that’s industrial in both size and design with an interesting all-day menu and great coffee.

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Granary Square

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Caravan
 

Brewhouse on York and Java Tree Café

Brewhouse on York is the first new wave independent coffee shop to arrive in King’s Cross and is a welcome addition to what’s always been a grotty section of York Way. Java Tree Café on Judd Street used to be called Bread & Butter then closed for a while. Foodwise it’s more of a traditional café, but smarter than some - the sort of place you could have a meeting or hang out making use of the free wifi.

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Brewhouse on York

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Java Tree Café
 

Tune Hotel and Kings Cross Inn Hotel

Tune is a Malaysian budget hotel with ambitious expansion plans for the UK. They should give our two very tired Travelodges a run for their money.

Kings Cross Inn Hotel replaces the Northumberland Hotel which was so bad that I used to read its Tripadvisor reviews for entertainment. Not surprsingly, Kings Cross Inn Hotel is pricier than the Northumberland but on a par with many of the other hotels in and around Argyle Square.

One other bit of hotel news: the St Pancras Novotel has re-branded as Pullman London St Pancras, and its restaurant changed from Mirrors to Golden Arrow.

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Tune Hotel

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Kings Cross Inn Hotel
 

Station news

Patisserie Valerie was a late arrival in the new King’s Cross concourse, while Caffe Nero recently opened a kiosk up near platforms 9-11.

Caffe Nero was also one of the places that will soon close its branch in the old arrivals concourse (which is going to be pulled down over the coming months - hurrah) along with Burger King, Upper Crust and Delice de France although only the last of these doesn’t have another branch nearby.

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Patisserie Valerie

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Caffe Nero King’s Cross
 

and finally…

Previously a private club, Base Bar & Club is a cosy basement drinking den in Keystone Crescent with occasional live music.

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Base Bar & Club

Indian Lounge is a smart Indian restaurant and takeaway on the site of the old KFC.

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Indian Lounge

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