Business spotlight: Women-owned restaurants in the City of London


International Women’s Day falls on 8 March, but the campaign for equity and equality is a battle that is being waged 365 days of the year, writes Zoe Patterson.

There are myriad ways to support this campaign as part of your own day-to-day, and one is by backing the women-owned businesses across the City of London.

Buying from women-owned businesses means you are investing in women’s economic development, gender equality, and growth in your community – and there are loads of women-owned businesses in and around the Square Mille to choose from.

Here are just a handful of the food-focused businesses you can sink your teeth into this month.

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Cheese at Leadenhall

Cheese at Leadenhall

Name one pairing that’s better than wine and cheese – we’ll wait. Cheese at Leadenhall is a specialty cheesemongers, casual restaurant, and wine and port bar that serves up (you guessed it) wine and cheese.

The business is owned and led by Sue Cloke, who started it in 2005. She’s also a regular judge at the British & World Cheese Awards and has been dubbed the ‘Duchess of Cheese’ by her team.

Kick back, nibble and sip at this wonderful spot in the iconic Leadenhall Market. And if you’re looking to treat a special someone in your life, the cheese hampers are always a good shout.

Gracechurch St, EC3V 1LT

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credit Ethiopiques London


Hungry for wholesome vegan food? The next time you’re visiting the Southbank Centre, head to Ethiopiques: a woman-owned business founded by Elizabeth Hailu in 2006.

The vegan menu is inspired by Ethiopia and includes traditional injera: Ethiopia’s famous flatbread. You can also tuck into warm vegan stews, nutritious salads, couscous and much more. Arrive hungry for this one.

Southbank Centre Belvedere Road SE1 8XX

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Koya City

Udon noodles, rice dishes and other Japanese eats, sound good? Koya City is one of the top women owned businesses in the City of London for a reason. It was co-founded by Shuko Oda, who also serves as Head Chef, and serves some of the best Japanese food in town.

Koya City is the second Koya branch and can be found just around the corner from the London Mithraeum; it launched seven years after the first branch opened in Soho.

Koya City is best known for its Izakaya-IzaKoya: special small plates that are designed to be enjoyed with sake and draught beers. Yum.

60 Bartholomew Cl, Barbican, London EC1A 7BF

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credit My Kids Are Hungry

My Kids Are Hungry

Founded during lockdown, My Kids Are Hungry was first created as a social media guide to home-cooked Vietnamese dishes and quickly developed a cult following.

Founded by Vivien, a mother of three hungry kids (hence the name), you’ll quickly learn how to serve up loads of nut-free, natural and fresh dishes if you give her Insta a follow (@mykidsarehungry_).

Want to experience the real thing? Head to Southbank Centre from Friday to Sunday to try some of her epic dishes. Must-tries include the chicken and prawn sheng jian bao and Vietnamese banh mi baguette.

Southbank Centre Belvedere Road SE1 8XX

Sessions Art Club

Food is art. At least a form of it. And Sessions Art Club has merged the two to create a creative space for those who like to dabble in both.

Headed by Florence Knight, this restaurant-cum-art studio features a dining room, three terraces with fireplaces, rooftop bar, and garden, adorned with striking pieces that compete for gazes with the delicious dishes being cooked up in the kitchen.

It’s a mighty combo based in Clerkenwell, and one that certainly needs your attention, stat.

Old Sessions House, 24 Clerkenwell Garden EC1R 0NA
Sessions Arts Club

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credit Stem & Glory

Stem & Glory

Founded by entrepreneur Louise Palmer-Masterton, Stem & Glory is a 100 percent vegan, plant-based business featuring three restaurants and catering services. Menu items include katsu curry, cauliflower wings, Korean ‘fish’ tacos and more.
The Stem & Glory London Barts branch is around the corner from Barbican Centre, making it one of the top women-owned businesses in the City of London.
Stem & Glory is all about sustainability and is a carbon neutral business aiming to help shift public consciousness towards a more eco-friendly world. And doesn’t that just hit the spot?rld.

60 Bartholomew Cl, Barbican, London EC1A 7BF

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