Imperial Bento Chinese restaurant to close. Update: For refurbishment

Update: After some conflicting reports from several sources, not helped by Imperial Bento seemingly unwilling to comment it turns out that the popular restaurant is only closing for refurbishment and will reopen to business as usual but having dropped Dim Sum from the menu.

Twitter user Aileen (@aileencheng58) has kindly let me use a photo she took of a notice Imperial Bento had hastily put up in their window:

With local press and social media reporting the closure of any business it’s important for management to ensure any statements are made promptly and that they are accurate. It seems in this case that staff were either unwilling to answer questions on the presumed permanent closure or were misinformed, giving out incorrect information.

This is great news for those that enjoy Imperial Bento and I look forward to visiting them again when they reopen later this month.

Continue reading “Imperial Bento Chinese restaurant to close. Update: For refurbishment”

Tasting the Cafe Clarkes menu

After some polite pestering, Lee Clarke, head chef at Clarkes restaurant kindly invited me to sample some of the menu at the newly opened Caf? Clarkes restaurant at the Key Theatre in Peterborough. Rarely will I refuse a free lunch so I braved the rain and headed along to the Embankment.

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Pop-up Peru in Peterborough

by guest reviewer Nyree (@eerynnyree)

A few weeks ago, while procrastinating on Facebook, I saw a post about a new pop-up Peruvian restaurant in Peterborough. With a brother living in Peru?s bustling capital Lima, and having just returned from two weeks there myself, it caught my eye.

I booked for the first pop-up Peru evening on 9th May. The venue was Club Caliente at Parnwell Centre, an unusual choice but it actually worked well on the night with plenty of space to accommodate all attendees. The Peruvian music and decorations helped create the right atmosphere. Continue reading “Pop-up Peru in Peterborough”

Riva Italian Restaurant moves home

With the loss of the Riva Italian restaurant from the Key Theatre, some have been wondering what this meant for Riva, one of the last independent Italian restaurants in the city.

Riva-Logo3[1]Well, I’m pleased to hear that Riva won’t be disappearing but are moving to a new location – the village of Eye, occupying the building formally run as the popular Toscanini’s. Other businesses I’ve spoken?claim city centre costs are forcing them to look outside of the city but thankfully Eye is only a few minutes on the parkway from wherever you are in Peterborough. I’m not sure what the circumstances are behind the closing of Toscanini but the silver lining to this cloud is that at least Riva will live on. Continue reading “Riva Italian Restaurant moves home”

Cafe Clarkes to open at the Key Theatre

Not content with running just one great Michelin-recognised restaurant in Peterborough, Lee Clarke of Clarkes on Lincoln Road is set to take over from Riva at the Vivacity-run Key Theatre and transform it into “Caf? Clarkes”, a “classic British restaurant with more of an informal, casual atmosphere”.

I caught up with Dinesh Odedra of the Banyan Tree who is teaming up with Lee on this venture to find out more about their plans to bring another independent, locally-owned dining experience to Peterborough. Continue reading “Cafe Clarkes to open at the Key Theatre”

Carluccios opens in Peterborough

If you’ve been living under a rock or possibly one of the Cathedral Square paving slabs you will have missed that Peterborough’s latest restaurant – Carluccio’s has finally opened.

Founded by the “Godfather of Italian Food” Antonio Carluccio (but since sold to a Dubai-based investment company), the restaurant is styled more as a smart-casual caff? where you can pop in for great food whether it’s a breakfast pastry or an evening dinner for two. As chain Italian restaurant, Carluccio’s gets mentioned in the same breath as PizzaExpress, Ask, Prezzo, etc but really it deserves a bit more respect.

What I appreciate about Carluccio’s is that it’s always about the food – great Italian food – despite being a chain restaurant. They don’t even need pizza on the menu, just a veritable smorgasboard (and then some) of dishes. Continue reading “Carluccios opens in Peterborough”

Carluccios Peterborough announces opening date

After over a year in the planning, Peterborough’s hottest new Italian restaurant Carluccios is set to open it’s doors on January 31st. UPDATE Carluccios opens to the public on February 6th – the January date is a soft launch for staff training!

Where some other chain restaurants prefer out of town retail parks, Carluccios seems to prefer the city centre locations which is good for Peterborough as our city centre has been flat on it’s backside for a couple of years. Any new restaurant will put increasing pressure on existing restaurants, especially the independents like Riva and The Pizza House with 2012 seeing Topo Gigio on Cowgate pretty much close it’s doors (apparently it’s still open for private hire). Coincidentally, the new Carluccios restaurant is in what had previously been Topo Gigios and then a tea room.

My hope is that it the opening of Carluccios in Peterborough will encourage the independents to go above and beyond what the chains can normally offer by providing a more personal and intimate service, introducing seasonal menus using local ingredients.



Clarkes rated top restaurant in Peterborough

You can almost hear the Champagne corks popping along Lincoln Road as fine dining restaurant Clarkes finds their way into the 2013 edition of the Michelin Guide, picking up a very respectable 3 forks and spoons “Very comfortable restaurant” rating for their efforts.

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