star 1933It’s been a busy year so far for us here one way and another. The Gin Club continues to go from strength to strength and keeps us on our toes. We love it and it seems you do too. So, we’re proud to announce a new arrival.

As some of you may know The Star has been in my family for 81 years. My Granddad opened ‘Forte’s Star Café’ in 1933 as a tea shop and confectioners, and Dad took over running it in the 1950’s. In fact Mum and Dad met here when Mum came in for her lunch one day and spotted a dark handsome Italian behind the counter! I spent much of my childhood here helping out in the Café and getting into trouble with my potato gun on Dean Street, happy days! I opened the bar here in the evening some 12 years ago, and the Gin Club is very much a product of my Dads support.

Sadly and unexpectedly my Dad passed away earlier this year, leaving a gaping hole in the Soho community and rendering the Star Café temporarily closed.

With the Star being the oldest family run establishment in Soho, and a sense of personal commitment and duty to continue and maintain the family tradition – Dad’s passing meant I had to step up to the plate. Tricky, as I have a crazy busy bar which I love and work all hours of the day and night. Unless someone invented a 48 hour day I had no idea how I was going to take on the day time.

Serving Soho since 1933
Serving Soho since 1933

Serendipity played its hand. For the past 2 years or so I’d been getting to know one of our most lovely and dedicated guests, Dan, who had been popping in after a hard day’s work to unwind with a Negroni or two. We chatted about all sorts of stuff and it turned out Dan is a coffee geek heart and soul. On top of that we have the same sense of doing things well and proper. Everything fell into place, Dan was ready for the challenge of opening a brand new coffee shop in Soho to match our Gin Club style, and so, equally excited and nervous we have opened the doors on The Soho Coffee House at The Star.

We’ve been working very hard over the last few months to bring to Soho something good, honest and genuine, maybe like what my Mum and Dad knew back in the 1950s. We’re finding our feet, and trying very hard to get things right: our aim for the day time is to bring together excellent coffee – meticulously selected for is provenance, genuine fair trade and quality, exquisite teas and lovingly homemade food. Of course, the London Gin Club at The Star continues to bring you the best gin and perfectly balanced cocktails by night.

It’s a very exciting time, laced with some pressure to get things right for many reasons, but pressure is good. So come and see us and tell us what you think.

Dad, I hope you like it, I wish you were here to see it .We’ll do our best to get it right… at least for the next 80 years or so.

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