In 1863 the wine merchant Daniel Nicholas Thévenon moved from Paris to London and soon set up the Café Royal on Regents Street. The combination of a superb wine cellar and fine French cuisine proved a seductive draw and by the end of the 19th Century the Café Royal became the most fashionable destination in London, frequented by Royalty, writers and artists alike. The Prince of Wales, Oscar Wilde, H.G. Wells and Rudyard Kipling along with Augustus John, Walter Sickert and Jacob Epstein were all regular patrons of this sumptuous establishment.
The present work is a study for the larger composition, The Café Royal (1911), in the collection of Tate, London. (C. Ginner, Notebooks, 1905-1952, p. 11; M. Easton, Charles Ginner: Viewing and Finding, p. 206).