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Comments

Robert McArthur

As an American student in London during the summer of 1990 I came across N P and made repeated visits while I was there. The food was great, the price was right for a tight budget and the atmosphere was icing on the cake. In 1992 I was fortunate enough to come back to London with some of my family. I made a point to visit N P to let them experience what I had enjoyed.
I still think of my trips to London and my visits to N P. I too am very disappointed to hear that it may not be there on my next visit. However, I'm still wishing for the best.

Ingrid

This is my absolute favorite cafe in London, and I suddenly realize I haven't been there for a while. I will go there this weekend for a cup of tea, and hope to get some positive answers on the continuation of this very nice Cafe.

Patrick

I was in the New Picc the Saturday before last, and thought I'd have a word with Lorenzo about the current state of play. It's a bit confused. It sounds like the proposed development scheme has been revived, and that it might start in 6-12 months time.

It's the same situation that the proprietor of Lino's in Store St had to deal with, i.e. knowing that the end was nigh, but not knowing from one month to the next when the axe would fall.

It would be useful if other New Picc punters could check, as Lorenzo was rushed off his feet, and wasn't able to spend too much time gassing.

As I said before, pass the word round, and tell everyone to visit the place as often as possible in the next few months.

Ingrid

I had a longer talk with Lorenzo a few weeks ago. It seems that the whole block where the cafe resides is going to be brought down in order to built some really ugly offices in stead. It looks like the Cafe is going to close in about 6-9 months from now. Lorenzo seems to have peace with that, as he has spent most of his life running the place, and he looks forward to his retirement.
I still hope something will safe the Cafe, as it is a place that in many ways means an awful lot to me.

Joel

I have heard that the café is to close in December of this year. I imagine this is because of the proposed demolition of the block: the whole area of South Regent Street is being redeveloped (no doubt into a mass of corporate-friendly glass and pine), and I suppose this must be part of that project.

Patrick

According to Adrian Maddox of Classic Cafes, the New Piccadily closes on September 23rd.

Pass the word round and tell everyone to eat there as many times as possible in the next few months. Let's put some money in Lorenzo's pocket, as a sign of our appreciation !

Joel

Indeed, I was there this evening, and was told the 22 September (I had heard December on Monday).

Greg Ogarrio

Curses, a thousand curses. I just heard the news about the New Piccadilly. Incredibly, I was thinking of flying over for a show outside London on Sept. 22. Sept. 22, the day before Sept. 23. Now, it looks like I must come and then pay my respects to one of great London institutions.

Greg Ogarrio
San Francisco

Jon Cooke

How sad, another part of london's history to be pulled down & replaced with some faceless office block

Patrick

There's a two page spread in today's (27th July) Standard about the closure of the New Piccadilly, which it says is due to happen on 22nd September. It opened in 1951. Not a bad run for what Lorenzo once told me was a "slutty old place" !!!

You won't see its like again, so get there as often as possible in the next few weeks.

My best New Picc "famous face" moment was seeing Ewan McGregor there last year (or was it the year before?), when he was starring in "Guys and Dolls" in the theatre up the road.

For those wanting a cheap meal, the Stockpot in Panton Street is quite a good alternative. It's been there since 1958, I think, though it had a refurb, probably in the 80's. It's got the potential to be another much-loved gem.

Jonathan Edwards

That's appalling. It's worth 10 stately homes in my opinion. Never mind we could do with another Pret A Manger or Starbucks!

Mark

It's so sad - this place is an institution and what annoys me is that someone is getting rent for this place but because they want more money eventually they will get no money.

It's all wrong. Anyone know of any celebrations planned for the place before it leaves ? One last tea with white sugar ?

Andrew Walmsley

For the eight years since we started i-level, the Regency Cafe in Regency Street near Victoria has fuelled us. From braised steak on Monday to fish and chips on a friday with top fry-up action in between it's been our boardroom and our refuge. Now we're moving to Oxford Circus, we'll miss Marco, the loudest voice in cafedom, being served tea in mugs, the atmosphere, the 50's decor and more than anything the food.

Proper caffs (where they're not just staffed by blokes in vests who deep fry everything to kill the botulism) are an increasingly rare sight, and we treasure them. Any caff tips for the Great Titchfield St area?

Patrick

Andrew,

Franks in Gt. Titchfield St is pretty good, as is the Market Place Cafe, near Oxford St ( see Russell's entry).

The New Picc went down all guns blazing. The last couple of weeks were manic, I'd never seen it so full. I popped in on the Monday and Friday of the last week. People were queuing to get in !!! Lorenzo, Carlo and the rest of the staff looked almost shell-shocked by the number of punters. It was a tribute to how much this place was revered.

Lorenzo had said he'd strip out the place, and he's kept to his word. I walked past at 6pm on the 24th, all the interior fixtures had been ripped out, and were piled up inside. The place was boarded up shortly after.

There was a sign stuck in the window recommending Cafe Rio at 58 Brewer St, open 7am-4pm, Mon-Sat, established since 1949.

I understand that the Italian restaurant up the road, La Cuccilina (?) is owned by Lorenzo's sister. Perhaps we should keep the Marioni clan in business and have a few meals here.

At least we can take some comfort from the fact that the New Piccadilly received massive coverage in its last few years, so there's a good selection of photos, not to mention "The Girl in the Cafe", to partially assuage our nostalgia.

Mind you, seeing the Chris Moyle feature in Saturday's Independent, was appalling ! He'd been photographed sitting at a couple of the New Picc's tables.

As a kind of methadone for all those on New Piccadilly cold turkey, I can recommend the West End Kitchen in Panton St, open 7-7.30am to 11.45pm, 7 days a week, which is a great place with a hint of the King's Road's Chelsea Kitchen (closed December last year). The basement has a good snug feel. The Stockpot almost opposite is a good place as well. Both started in 1958, but have had (I would guess), 1980's refits.

Carrie

God I miss this place.

Went there for years. It was right around the corner from where I worked, and I could just hide away in a colourful corner with my bangers and mash and coco-cola... Sigh.

Bar Bruno has become my cafe replacement. Lovely place though. Miss bangers and mash and the ole waiters like mad though.

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