Custard Bakery & Gunpowder Restaurant
The One Tower Bridge development continues to go from strength to strength with its latest opening, Custard Bakery and Gunpowder Restaurant, owned by Harneet and Devina Baweja.
Inspired by the old coffee houses of Kolkata, Custard is a 40 cover bakery specialising in savouries, pastries and sandwiches from across the Indian subcontinent, alongside European influences and in the evening, Custard becomes a wine bar.
Gunpowder at Tower Bridge is a 60 cover restaurant inspired by Calcutta.
Work on the project was undertaken by Block 1 Design who were asked to create both spaces. Custard had to be an informal bakery with Gunpowder, on the second floor, acting as the main dining area, continuing upstairs to the mezzanine.
Speaking to Premier Hospitality magazine, Justin Melican of Block 1 Design said: “We wanted to create a space that reflected traditional materials and a colour palette of India without creating a themed restaurant or recreating something that already existed. Before we did this I had been in India for about a month where I had taken lots of pictures of things like the tiles and colours so when I came back, we had a really good reference of what to go with.”
Due to the space being two separate entities, each needed their own identity. This was achieved through a creative selection of materials, colour and texture. Through the use of polished terrazzo floors, raw blackened steel, concrete and bespoke custom designed tiles, the overall design is a contemporary interpretation of India that reflects the warmth of traditional design.
Commenting on some of the sites design highlights, Laura Kiely, Co-Partner at Block 1 Design said: “The stairs is definitely one of them. We kept the mezzanine open and then kept the same feature running through the mezzanine and along the stairs.
“The bakery back wall is all reclaimed pieces of marble that we sourced from salvage yards across England so they are pieces from old marble fireplaces cut down to create the whole wall. Where some of them cracked we filled those cracks in with a gold paint.
“The whole thing is then contrasted with wooden table tops, pewter table tops and a whole set of vintage reclaimed 1950s chairs which came from an old working man’s club.
To divide the spaces, Block 1 Design created a bespoke cloak cupboard and newspaper rail that floats between the structural columns. The design allows for visibility through the space with the ability to separate the bakery from Gunpowder during the day.
Laura added: “The challenge was to create a space that was open and flexible but maintained a character and cohesion so at night it can be turned into a wine bar and Gunpowder restaurant but then during the day it has its own identity as the bakery.”
The Gunpowder Restaurant opened on 3rd September 2018 with Custard Bakery due to open in October.
Justin concluded: “This whole project was actually pretty good for us because the client was quite willing to trust us and let us go with the concept that we had envisioned so it was creatively freeing and very rewarding.”