London is having its busiest period this fall: a state funeral; one big London Fashion Week, as well as a mini one; the Frieze Art Fair, and the BFI London Film Festival. The city is still jam-packed with multicultural offerings, from Israeli food, Iranian art to real stories told onstage.
Where to Eat
Celebrity Israeli chef Eyal Shani is bringing his restaurant chain Miznon to London, after expanding in Paris; Vienna, Austria; Melbourne, Australia, and New York. The concept is an easy one: food for all, just as you would find in any Middle Eastern home. The menu includes roasted cauliflower and broccoli; ratatouille on tahini; lamb kebab; thin slices of rib eye steak, and more. Shani is about to become a name about town, the same way Yotam Ottolenghi has.
A taste of Australia in London’s Soho and Queen’s Park. The restaurant serves brunch all day featuring a heavy seafood menu, from kingfish crudo to a yellow monkfish and mussels curry. At the Queen’s Park branch, the parasol outside adds to the Aussie ambience.
London’s Notting Hill is getting the Greek treatment with Zēphyr, a new restaurant from the Pachamama group whose other locations dish out Peruvian food. The venture is named after the Greek god of the west wind, which aptly fits the west London location. Greek South American chef John Skotidas is heading up the kitchen serving up tarama, a cod roe emulsion; soutzoukakia, spiced mince beef with cumin yogurt; crispy potato terrine, and Loukoumades, fluffy sweet honey balls that are the Greek version of doughnuts.
KOL is Mexican food not as you know it. Chef Santiago Lastra’s concept restaurant is all about “simple flavors in bold combinations,” made with British ingredients. The autumn dishes on the menu include chicharrón with wild mushrooms; carnitas, which translates to little meats, using confit pork cheek, and elote, a sweetcorn cake with buttermilk ice cream and fig leaf. The restaurant has its own online store that stocks wine and mezcal.
What to See
Keeping It Surreal: Objects of Desire
The weird and wonderful is taking place at the Design Museum, which has been curated with the Vitra Design Museum. “Keeping It Surreal: Objects of Desire” tracks the movement of surrealism from 1924 to the present day featuring more than 300 objects on display, including Dalí’s Lobster Telephone and Man Ray’s The Gift (Le Cadeau). A part of the exhibition will focus on fashion’s relationship with surrealism demonstrated by pieces such as Daniel Roseberry’s contemporary take on Elsa Schiaparelli’s design and Maria Grazia Chiuri’s Salvador Dalí ensemble for Dior.
The Credit Suisse Exhibition Lucian Freud: New Perspectives
The National Gallery has staged seven decades of Lucian Freud’s work, starting with his early pieces such as “Girl with Roses” from the 1940s; “Reflection With Two Children” in the 1960s, through to the 2001 portrait of Queen Elizabeth II. The exhibition includes more than 60 loans from museums and major private collections around the world.
Soheila Sokhanvari: Rebel Rebel
The Barbican is hosting the first major U.K. commission by an Iranian artist. Soheila Sokhanvari’s show explores the lives of Iranian women between 1925 and the 1979 revolution. It’s a celebration of womanhood in 31 portraits, where all the subjects are captured with their hair uncovered.
The Horror Show!
Somerset House is presenting the phenomenon of horror in three acts: “Monster,” “Ghost,” and “Witch,” with more than 200 works that examine how the genre has transformed in the last 50 years. The images on display look at the disruption of 1970s punk; modern witchcraft, and the global financial crisis of 2008. The artists used in the exhibition include Judy Blame, Leigh Bowery, David Shrigley, Marisa Carnesky, and more.
What to Watch
A Single Man
Christopher Isherwood’s 1964 novel “A Single Man” is getting a West End stage take at the Park Theatre. It has the same premise as Tom Ford’s film, following college professor George as he grieves the death of his long-term partner, Jim. Theo Fraser Steele is set to play the main role and in November he will be starring in Netflix’s “The Crown,” as Princess Anne’s second husband, Timothy Laurence.
Light of Passage
Critically acclaimed choreographer Crystal Pite is returning to The Royal Opera House for “Light of Passage,” based on her Olivier Award-winning ballet “Flight Pattern,” which is based on the refugee crisis. Pite has worked with the likes of the Paris Opera Ballet, the National Ballet of Canada and Nederland Dans Theater.
The Boy With Two Hearts
Brothers Hamed & Hessam Amiri are sharing their real-life experiences on stage at The National Theatre. Their family fled Herat, Afghanistan, in 2000 after their mother spoke out against the Taliban. The family escaped their home by way of Russia and through Europe until seeking refuge in the U.K., by which the eldest son’s life-threatening heart condition worsens.
Elton John is spreading the gospel of Tammy Faye and Jim Bakker at London’s Almeida Theatre with a new musical about the couple that preached to millions of people 24 hours a day from their South Carolina studio. The true story is directed by the theater’s artistic director Ruper Goold. The Hollywood production “The Eyes of Tammy Faye,” starring Jessica Chastain and Andrew Garfield, won two Academy Awards in 2022.