Former police cells to become bar at second site for Joe’s

joes southern kitchen

Maxwell’s Restaurant Group has announced plans to open a second site for its American concept Joe’s Southern Kitchen & Bar in London.

With restaurateur Brian Stein, it is due to launch the new venue, with a basement bar called Jailbird, in Kentish Town, north London, in March after opening the first in Covent Garden (pictured) in 2013.

Inspired by the American South, it specialises in American-style dishes including fried chicken and an extensive cocktail menu. The Covent Garden site also has a separate bar in its basement.

Spread over two floors and occupying the former site of Kentish Canteen, the new Joe’s in Kentish Town Road will feature a 90-cover ground floor restaurant and an outside 20-cover barbecue and dining space.

Jailbird in the basement will take inspiration from the site’s history as a police station, with alcoves originally used as cells transformed into cosy drinking booths.

The cocktail list will feature original recipes alongside new takes on the Southern classics, the Julep and the Sazerac. It will have a good selection of bourbons and rye whiskeys and a range of American craft beers.

Jailbird will play Southern American music and its influences, form old-fashioned blues and classic country to rockabilly and Northern Soul.

Restaurant operations manager Jim Robertson said: “After the success of Joe’s in Covent Garden, we decided it was time to open up our kitchen to more Londoners and a new venue in Kentish Town was an obvious choice for us.

“The restaurant scene in NW5 is about to explode and we want to be a part of it.”

The restaurant will have sleek interiors, tapping into classic Americana, but have a modern urban edge. It will feature a mix of raw exposed brickwork with parquet-topped tables, scarlet leather banquette seating, vintage Coca-Cola signs and neon American billboards.

The kitchen will be headed by executive chef Trevor Tobin, formerly of London restaurants and bars Steam & Rye, The Big Easy and Goodman, working alongside Mark Jeevaratnam, head chef and creator of the original Joe’s menu.

As well as having many of the favourite dishes from the Covent Garden site, it will focus on the signature new recipe, Sweet Tea Brined Fried Chicken with Lemon Salt & Tabasco Honey.

Other dishes, all designed for sharing, will include Beef Short Rib and Southern food such as Devilled Eggs, Mac ‘n’ Cheese and Gooey Corn Spoon Bread. Breakfast and brunch will feature American breakfast favourites.

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