Sister act

Categories: News and previews

John Ogier and James Lowe on what to expect from their new bakery, restaurant and wine bar: Flor

You’ve probably heard (or seen) by now that the esteemed team behind Michelin-starred Shoreditch restaurant Lyle’s is opening up a new site at Borough Market—and if you haven’t, where have you been?

Described as Lyle’s’ “informal little sister”, the new bakery, restaurant and wine bar from chef James Lowe and manager John Ogier opens 11th July on Bedale Street, in a beautiful, historic three-floored building. With its metal, Crittal-style floor-to-ceiling windows, white-washed brick walls and sleek, wood-heavy interior, in appearance it is everything you’d expect from the pair’s second baby. But where Lyle’s is steadfastly British, its menu changing daily according to our island’s micro seasons (much to the credit of James’ creativity), Flor is more reflective of its position both within the Market, and wider London. “London is an enormous food distribution hub and it’s incredibly multicultural,” says James. “The Market itself also has huge variety—we want to embody that. It’s been loads of fun, writing the menu and bringing in ingredients I wouldn’t put on the menu at Lyle’s.”

Burrata, salted tomatoes, fennel blossom

Baking at its heart
What isn’t negotiable, though, is the standard of produce (and indeed, the resultant dish) or the ethical integrity of the suppliers—everything is sourced with a mind for not just quality, but also the care with which the people and the landscape that produced it are treated. Be it veg, meat, coffee, or wine, “agricultural responsibility” is paramount. They’ll bake their own bread and pastries, using flour they’ve milled themselves, in their new onsite bakery. “We have always done bread at Lyle’s but we’ve not had a proper bread oven,” James continues. “Whatever came next, we were going to get one—now we can really make fantastic bread. It’s nice to have it at the heart.”

The plan is to be open all day: from morning coffee and croissant, to working lunch, to indulgent dinner, to quick (or leisurely) glass of wine after work. “We want it to be somewhere that’s fun and relaxed—where people can have a good time,” says John. “We want to create places that we would want to go,” James adds. “Borough Market is an iconic place. It’s a destination already—we want to be a destination within that destination.”