Benito's Hat to open two new sites
Mexican-style casual dining group Benito's Hat is to open two new locations across London, in Liverpool Street and Bromley.
Liverpool Street is expected to be a "street food pod" opening in January, while Bromley is the group's first suburban high-street site, and is planned for February.
The street food pod concept will be open from 7am to midnight, and offer a pared-back version of the brand's usual menu, including breakfast, lunch and late-night dishes such as tacos and burritos, plus a newly-designed "torta" dish. Alongside dishes to go, the site will also feature 15-20 seats.
The Bromley site will be 2,000 sq ft, and form part of the town's newly developed North Village area. It will have 60 covers indoors and 24 outside, and offer the full all-day menu plus cocktails, beer and wine. Its décor will feature a large communal copper table, alongside exposed brick walls, enamel furniture and neon lighting installations.
The group already runs six sites across the capital, including Covent Garden, King's Cross and Goodge Street.
Ben Fordham, managing director of Benito's Hat, explained that the company was happy to be developing its street food side, and had wanted to launch a site south of the Thames for a while.
He said: "We're looking forward to getting back to our street food roots and feeding commuters at Liverpool Street Station, which allows us to simplify things but also gives us the freedom to experiment with some new ideas. We're also delighted to launch [in Bromley], as it's an area we've wanted to explore for a long time."
Co-founded by Fordham with now-executive chef Felipe Fuentes Cruz, the first Benito's Hat opened in Goodge Street in 2008.
It announced plans to double its estate in late 2013, after securing an investment of £1.4m from Calculus Capital. Since then it has also opened sites including Farringdon and Aldgate, and broken the record for the "UK's biggest burrito", creating a 100ft version of the favourite dish in London's King's Cross Square in October 2013.
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