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Credit: Rebecca Dickson


Jason Allen 27/01/23


Maene | A Modern Bistro In Spitalfields

The last time Nick Gilkinson opened a restaurant, the entire country was plunged into lockdown a couple of weeks later.

So the fact that he’s announced he’s opening another almost feels like a threat.

But then, the fact that the eatery in question, Townsend, managed to not only survive the various curfews but to somehow thrive in spite of them speaks to the man’s obvious knack for running a decent operation. So, set your expectations to ‘high’.

This new venture is going to be called Maene (after the Old English word for ‘a sense of community’) and you’ll find it in Spitalfields, atop a four-storey former Victorian clothing factory on Fashion Street, sandwiched between Brick Lane & Commercial Street. Boy, they sure knew how to name a street back then. The building itself looks pretty beautiful, in all its brick-built, industrial-era faded glory.

Maene - Nick

The plan is to fill it with dining space, a cocktail bar, and a couple of private rooms, and a stately 18-seater communal table – and the team they’ve entrusted to make it all look handsome is FareInc, the same design studio responsible for the architectural luminaries as Akub and Kolamba. Then, later on in the year, when the mercury creeps up to an acceptable level, they’ll unveil a sizeable roof terrace too (which will almost double the restaurant’s capacity) with a nice view over the surrounding neighbourhood.

The food, meanwhile, is going to follow on in Townesend’s footsteps, taking British ingredients and sculpting them into modern European bistro dishes. On the opening menu, you can expect the likes of La Latteria Stracciatella with pickled squash and “yesterday’s bread”; some Springfield farm chicken with rosemary, garlic and burnt lemon; and some sgroppino pear sorbet with English sparkling wine and elderflower.

Looks like Nick Gilkinson is going to be the, ahem, Maene man.



NOTE: Maene is set to open on 31st March. We’ll be back then with the fill scoop. In the meantime, you can take a peep at their website right here.

Maene | 7-9 Fashion Street, E1 6PX

Looking for more fabulous eateries in Spitalfields? Check out the best Spitalfields restaurants.

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7-9 Fashion Street, Spitalfields, E1 6PX
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