Margot Henderson knows a thing or two about cooking—her husband, Fergus, owns London nose-to-tail staple St. John Bread and Wine. But, Rochelle Canteen is about much more than food. This is the place you go to hang out, especially in the summer. At the sunny tables in the pretty courtyard, one glass of wine turns to two (or three?) as the afternoon passes by in a pleasant haze of good food and great people-watching. The food is traditional, almost retro, but there’s a reason the British spent most of the twentieth century tucking into mustardy Welsh rarebit and flaky, pastry-topped leek and chicken pies. It’s mouthwatering comfort food that makes us feel happy, full, and deeply understood. Subtle details like the Aalvar Alto tables and the line of straw hats hung along the walls make for restrained, chic decoration in the whitewashed-brick room. The light streaming through the floor-to-ceiling window is the main decoration. (For a dose of Henderson’s fare that doesn’t require a trip east, stop by Rochelle Canteen’s second location at the ICA on the strand.)

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