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Champagne and lobsters as London diners splash out to celebrate new Covid lockdown freedoms

Jonathan Prynn
·1-min read
<p>One chef said the spending had “gone nuts” </p> (Getty Images)

One chef said the spending had “gone nuts”

(Getty Images)

London diners are celebrating the end of the long winter lockdown with extravagant spending rarely seen outside the Christmas season, according to restaurateurs.

Spend per head has soared since Monday’s return of outdoor dining and drinking after a near continuous closure since November.

One chef said the spending had “gone nuts” as Londoners marked the reopening in style. No shows are also said to be running at below normal levels despite the chilly weather.

Kerridge’s Bar and Grill at the Corinthia hotel in Whitehall ran out of £49.50 lobster and saw huge demand for Laurent Perrier Grand Siecle champagne at £28 a glass on Monday’s “day one”.

Martin Williams, chief executive of M restaurants in Victoria and the City said there had been a rush of sales of Wagyu Tartares with 100 ordered in the first hour of service. Champagne sales across the group, which also includes Gaucho steakhouses, were up 169 per cent on the same day in 2019.

Mr Williams said: “It was nice to see some reservations sitting down to enjoy belated birthday celebrations and family gatherings that had been in the planning for some time.”

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