Fay Maschler's 50 favourite restaurants in London
A restaurant in the converted bike shed of a former school in the Boundary Estate in Shoreditch sounds so achingly here and now, but Margot Henderson and Melanie Arnold’s spinoff from their outside catering company has been bowling along for more than 12 years. Permission has recently been granted for evening opening Thursday to Saturday. Heavens, the next thing you know they’ll be getting a liquor licence but if so, it shouldn’t stop you visiting the lovely, fastidious Leila’s (shop) nearby. The way in — through a small blue door in the high brick wall — invokes The Secret Garden and when the weather is so inclined it is a lovely, peaceful green space in which to loll. Margot is married to Fergus Henderson of St. John (see right) and shares his direct, wholesome approach to cooking but augmented by the spirit apparent in her terrific cookbook, You’re All Invited. Here is one of London’s hidden treasures.