Natasha being much more on the ball than I am arranged for me to come along to the Family Club soft launch of the space, allowing us to get a preview without the crowds.
The space had been transformed from a boarded up warehouse to a a brightly lit open space decorated in IKEA’s classic minimal (but quirky) Swedish style.
Entering through the cafe we decided to browse the space before getting a taste of Sweden, just as we would when visiting one of their main stores.
The shop had a good selection of small kitchen basics and plants, but mainly what the central space gave was inspiration: 3 kitchens set up with a chef cooking up a storm with IKEA’s food items.
After reminding ourselves what it is like to be in a real kitchen (as opposed to our pokey London flats) we ventured through to a long corridor, which had various party set ups covering almost every hosting style.
These displays then lead us on to a sensory food experience by Vetiver which included video displays, lights, sounds and tastes which aimed to make us think about the full sensory experience that food offers.
Unfortunately, only 5 of the room got to eat the food being cooked up so after being taunted by freshly cooked scents and talk of food for an hour we headed to the cafe which offers sharing boards, cakes and, of course, classic IKEA meatballs.
I went for 5 [veggie] meatballs which came with a small selection of vegetables and a spicy sauce which was a complete bargain at only £2.
The cafe has long sharing tables, private comfortable booths and a long window bar with plenty of plug sockets and free wifi making it perfect for the local creative community, or those waiting for a train from nearby Liverpool Street Station.
Being the day before opening the staff were very fresh and struggled in the cafe but hopefully that was just first day nerves and it will improve with time.
The space is only around until 25th September and offers up a varied programme of food themed events, so if you want to check it out get in there quick!