Delhi Brasserie History
Founded on one of Soho’s most exclusive streets, the Delhi Brasserie has come to join its neighbours Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club and Bar Italia as a genuine Soho institution.
First laid out in the late 17th century, The Delhi Brasserie’s Frith Street home is one of the oldest streets in Soho, and has seen more than its fair share of famous faces down the years.
It was on Frith Street that a nine-year-old Mozart stayed in 1764-5, showing off his prodigious talent to flocking crowds of gentry and aristocrats – not to mention the king himself. It was here that the young Mozart composed his first symphony – the ‘London’.
It was also on Frith Street, in the former residence of the Venetian Ambassador, that many of that other great composer Handel’s oratorios received their world premiers.
A few decades later and the street’s artistic atmosphere was still going strong as home to writers William Hazlitt and Mary Stewart Mitford, along with artist John Constable, while nearby the likes of William Blake and Karl Marx made their home.
With Soho luminaries including the likes of Francis Bacon, Marlene Dietrich, Noel Cowerd, Joseph Conrad and Dr Johnson, little wonder that the area retains a Bohemian, artistic feel to this day –you may even spot a famous face or two as you tuck in to your curry, the Delhi Brasserie being a favourite of the area’s resident musicians, artists and actors.
But Frith Street has also been home to innovation. The 1950s saw London’s first espresso bar opened here, showing a sign of things to come in this age of coffee shops on every corner.
But its most earth-altering claim to fame must surely stem from number 22, immediately over the road from the Delhi Brasserie. For here, on 27th January 1926, the world’s first ever public demonstration of television took place, John Logie Baird showing off his futuristic contraption to a packed room – little guessing the impact his invention would go on to have.