On Wednesday 13th March, PRELUDE by Oriole will open in The Yards, Covent Garden – a three-month pop-up restaurant, bar and innovation space from the team behind acclaimed cocktail bars Oriole, Nightjar and Bar Swift. PRELUDE by Oriole will pave the way for the second iteration of award-winning speakeasy, Oriole, which will reopen in a permanent location in The Yards, Covent Garden later this summer.

At PRELUDE by Oriole, food and drink will be on equal footing, giving guests the opportunity to enjoy a brand-new list of cocktails featuring the likes of Brugal 1888 rum, The Macallan, and Highland Park. For the first time at Oriole, cocktails will be accompanied by an à la carte food offering. Argentine Head Chef Gustavo Giallionardo has created a menu which explores the ways that Latin American ingredients and cooking styles intersect with those from the rest of the globe.

Drawing influences from various places and traditions, including Nikkei (Japanese-Peruvian fusion) and Argentine-Italian cuisines, the menu will combine ingredients such as Mexican delicacy huitlacoche (corn smut), Peruvian ají amarillo (yellow pepper), koji, seaweed and matcha in a creative variety of small plates, mains and desserts. Dishes will include:

Oyster, Amarillo Leche de Tigre


Raw Scallop, Edamame Agua Chile, Kiwi, Seaweed


Beef Tartare Sando, Koji Emulsion


Pumpkin, Tamarind, Peanut Sambal, Green Curry Creme Fraiche


Duck, Orange Mole, Beetroot, Pickles, Dukkah

In line with the adventure-seeking, migratory, oriole birds from which the bar takes its name, the drinks menu will draw inspiration from culinary and imbibing traditions around the world, with each cocktail paying homage to the distinctive ingredients and heritage of its region.

Bar Manager Samet Ali has developed a selection of cocktails, including the Mizuwari, combining 12-year-old Highland Park whisky washed with chocolate miso, asparagus distillate, amontillado sherry, green walnut vermouth and cold brewed Hojoicha tea. Drinks have been expertly paired with the food menu to create a rounded culinary experience, with the Mizuwari perfectly complementing the dish of Huitlacoche, Mushrooms and Egg Yolk; and the Apple Tart, Miso, Dulce de Leche Ice Cream, which will be paired with the Aomori, featuring ultra-premium Brugal 1888 rum from the Dominican Republic, as well as oak-aged quince rakia, meadow vermouth, Fuji apple juice and cherry blossom vinegar.

PRELUDE by Oriole

Many of the drinks and dishes served will appear on the menu at Oriole’s new permanent home in Covent Garden later this year, with the pop-up serving as a research and development space for both food and drink. For fans of the original Oriole, selected signature cocktails will also appear on the menu, such as the Acadia, a playful take on a Whisky Sour, inspired by the peanut butter and jelly sandwich.

Located on Slingsby Place within The Yards, Covent Garden, the 34-cover restaurant and bar will be designed to evoke the natural world through a rich colour palette of warm browns and deep greens. Plush banquette seating and brass touches will combine with low lighting to finish the sleek and sultry space. As with the original Oriole, live jazz music will soundtrack long evenings, transporting guests away from the hustle-and-bustle outside.

Edmund Weil, Director of Speakeasy Entertainment, says: “After leaving Smithfield in 2023, we always planned to revive Oriole with our top employees as operating partners. Finding a new home has proved a long journey, but we are delighted to have settled in within The Yards at the heart of Covent Garden and one of the most happening locations in London.”

PRELUDE by Oriole

On behalf of The Yards, Jamie Thipthorpe, Director at CBRE, said: “Oriole is an exciting step forward in our long-term strategy to cement The Yards as a unique mixed-use day-to-night destination in the heart of Covent Garden. This pop-up will be a great addition to The Yards ahead of its permanent site later this year and is a testament to the area and the opportunities it provides for new concepts to thrive. We will continue to work closely with the council, residents, and key stakeholders alike to deliver Oriole’s vision, which we look forward to welcoming to our community.”

PRELUDE comes from Speakeasy Entertainment, the group behind the award-winning Bar Swift and Nightjar, which opened in 2010 and was voted one of the top three bars in the world at 50 Best Bars 2012, 2013 and 2014. In 2015, Speakeasy launched the original Oriole in Smithfield Market, which was soon after named

 ‘Best New International Cocktail Bar’ at the Spirited Awards 2016. The original site closed in Smithfield in 2022 due to the redevelopment of Smithfield Market, but has now been given a new lease of life in this new incarnation. The pop-up is in partnership with Edrington UK, the UK’s number one premium whisky supplier owning brands including The Macallan, Brugal rum and Highland Park.

PRELUDE by Oriole will open for three months from Wednesday 13th March. The restaurant and bar will be open to guests Wednesday – Saturdays, 5pm-11pm.

@theoriolebar | oriolebar.com

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