“We’ve exchanged,” the boys tweeted recently, “but there’s lots of work to do on the property before we can get in there, so likely to be end of 2017.”A family-run business, Eat 17 started a decade back in 2006 when brothers James Brundle and Chris O’Connor opened a neighbourhood bistro and grocery in Orford Road.
Since then the convenience store, restaurant and condiments connoisseurs have added locations in Hackney and Whitstable to their foodie empire, brought the world bacon jam (an award-winning relish that’s just the thing for tarting up savoury food) and bagged a whole bunch of awards along the way.The building they’ve secured in Leytonstone originally belonged to the Gas, Light and Coke Co, and was designed by George Grey Wornum, the architect behind the RIBA (Royal Institute of British Architects) headquarters at 66 Portland Place.
The Eat 17 team have form with restoring deco buildings – their Hackney location on Brooksby’s Walk was previously the Electric Cinema – and their proposal for 676-678 Leytonstone High Road, made back in July last year, includes refurbishing and restoring the original frontage and features and exposing the ceiling.We can’t wait to see this Art Deco beauty restored and are excited to have an Eat 17 just around the corner. If it’s anything like the others (and it will undoubtedly be) we can expect a store stuffed with high quality sustainably-sourced products from independent local suppliers and producers, as well as well-priced staples (they work with Spar to offer “everyday products at competitive prices”). There’ll be a restaurant offering too: it remains to be seen whether that’s a casual burger bar, pizzeria, or more refined Walthamstow-Village bistro-type affair, as well as a refillable wine station and florist.
And they’ll stock their recently-launched range of chilled ready meals based on popular dishes served at the E17 restaurant. A shelf will be dedicated to bacon jam and the growing family of spreads, which includes a Bacon Jam cookbook and the veggie-friendly Onion Jam.
Mouth watering yet? C’mon, it’s February already: it’ll go by in a flash.