The old “you don’t what you’ve got until it’s gone” saying couldn’t be a more appropriate description for our relationship to chain restaurants. Who knew you could actually miss Pret? Or that the closing down of Maccy’s would have you fantasising about how many nuggets you could fit into your mouth at once? Whilst closing outlets was absolutely the right thing to do to ensure the safety of staff, we have been watching to see how chains would re-open and when, because an at-home recreation just doesn’t quite match the real thing. And slowly but surely, it’s starting to happen.
Gregg’s – there was a lot of back and forth about when and where Gregg’s was going to re-open some of its branches and the bakery chain has decided that 800 stores across the country will reopen from 18th – you can see the full list here.
McDonald’s – Maccy’s will be reopening 924 drive-thru restaurants in the UK and Ireland at the beginning of June, with another 75 sites opening for delivery. They’ll run a reduced menu, so that means no breakfasts but the classics will be there. Locations will be revealed on 2nd June so fingers crossed for more London branches.
Honest Burgers – a handful of Honest sites have reopened for delivery (including Swiss Cottage, Peckham, Old Street, South Ken, Chiswick and Borough) with more coming over the next week. To celebrate, they’re bringing back some of their most-loved specials. First up is the Spring, with smoked bacon, Westcombe cheddar and wild garlic pesto, with the Brindisa collab Chimichurri (with chorizo, manchego, chimichurri and chipotle mayo) following in June.
Burger King – 50 restaurants around the country have reopened for delivery and drive-thru orders. There are six currently open in London, including Merton, Tottenham Hale and Croydon, with six more opening soon.
Nando’s – after a trial run delivering thousands of meals to charities and the NHS, 94 Nando’s restaurants have opened nationwide, 37 of which are in London. You can get your peri-peri fix delivered via Deliveroo or click & collect.
KFC – the Colonel started with four London shops re-opening with a limited menu for delivery only but more have joined, so you can get your chicken fix from Enfield, Putney, Mornington Crescent, Hammersmith, Ealing, Whitechapel, Colindale, Walworth Road, South Woodford, Leyton and Hayes End – check Deliveroo or Uber Eats for your closest. As well as serving us the chicken, KFC will continue to donate meals to the NHS.
Five Guys – a bunch of Five Guys restaurants have actually been delivering during lockdown but more locations have started to reopen, taking the London number to over 20, including sites in Westfield London, Fulham, Baker Street, Camden, Wimbledon, St Paul’s and Islington – check Deliveroo for your nearest, or you can click & collect using the Five Guys app.
Pizza Express – they released their famous dough ball recipe so we could all get our fix at home but Pizza Express will soon be cooking them up themselves. From 28th May 13 branches will be open on Deliveroo, including Balham, Chiswick, Belsize Park, Ealing, Greenwich, and Dulwich.
Pret – 101 branches of Pret have now reopened across the country, 30 of which are in London. The list includes Warren Street, City Road, Tooting Broadway, Vauxhall, South Kensington, Brixton, Shoreditch, Islington, Battersea and King’s Cross, have reopened for delivery and takeaway – find your nearest on Deliveroo and Uber Eats. Pret is also donating food to charities including the Felix Project.
Shake Shack – two London Shake Shacks are now open – Tottenham Court Road and Canary Wharf – for delivery and takeaway orders from the restaurants, with a special delivery-only kitchen opening in Battersea. They are donating meals to the NHS and NHS workers can also get a second burger on the house with their orders.