Casual Dining Group is making a move into pub operations after securing a tender to run two pubs at Heathrow Airport. It will launch a new Ale & Coffee House concept at the pubs in Terminals 3 and 5, currently known as the Three Bells and Five Tuns but now to be called the Darwin and the George. The concept has been developed with the support of Geronimo Inns co-founders Jo and Rupert Clevely, and will provide an all-day offer with the emphasis on premium drinks and coffee. Mark Nelson, CDG’s managing director of concessions and franchising, said: “We’re delighted to have secured these sites and our new partnership gives us huge credibility as we enter the pub sector. It demonstrates our continued passion to be at the forefront of the hospitality sector, not just as an operator of casual dining restaurants but food-led pubs too.” CDG plans to seek more similar opportunities in travel hub locations.
Steak concept Flat Iron has just opened its fifth restaurant, on Goldborne Road in Portobello.
Fast Mexican operator Barburrito has opened at the Oasis dining area of the Meadowhall centre in Sheffield. It is the brand’s 21st site, and the arrival is part of a £60m overhaul of Meadowhall. Barburrito chief executive Morgan Davies said: “This is a huge milestone for Barburrito—our 21st store. I am thrilled to be opening here in Sheffield, Meadowhall—it is a fantastic destination with a thriving shopping environment.”
Las Iguanas will open at the BH2 complex in Bournemouth in the next few weeks. Also launching there is frozen yoghurt concept Llaollao, while Five Guys and The Real Greek both open their doors on Friday (26 May).
Craft Union Pub Company, part of the Ei Managed Operations group, has taken its estate to 122 pubs with the opening of several new sites in the south of England, including The Boundary in Norwich, The George in Ashford, The Crown in Ramsgate and The Clocktower in Torquay. The group is also now trialling a new food offer including more burgers and pizzas. Operations director Frazer Grimbleby said: “It’s always been our intention to develop into a leading scale operator of community pubs and our recent expansion southwards marks an important milestone in that journey. We aim to put great quality pubs back at the heart of the local community as we strongly believe pubs play a vital role in the lives of their customers and we are committed to nurturing this.”
Ei Managed Investments has announced a new deal with the Three Cheers Pub Co that will see it reopen various sites from the Ei Group. The new venture, to be called Six Cheers, will start with the relaunch of the Bedford in Balham. It is the eighth alliance announced by Ei since it set up its ‘Managed Expert’ partnership scheme. The joint ventures have 25 pubs between them. Tom Peake of Three Cheers Pub Co. said: “We are absolutely delighted to be working alongside Ei Managed Investments and we are especially excited about taking on a venue as iconic as The Bedford. It’s a pub we’ve known all our lives and we are thrilled to have the opportunity to restore it to its former glory.” Nathan Wall, Operations Director for Ei Managed Investments, said: “Six Cheers is an exciting venture for us. We’re delighted to be working alongside the Three Cheers Pub Co. team and harness the experience they’ve gained from building their unique pub company.”
Novus Leisure has launched a new Balls Brothers venue on Brook Street in Mayfair. It is the tenth Balls Brothers location, and Novus now wants to secure more locations for the brand.
Whitbread’s Beefeater brand has opened at Commerce Park in Frome. It is a conversion of a venue previously operated under the Table Table format.
Bill’s has confirmed an opening in Plymouth. It has taken a unit previously occupied by Ed’s Easy Diner in the Drake Circus shopping centre in the town.
Hollywood Bowl is to open a bowling alley with attached Hollywood Diner and bar at the O2 centre in Greenwich. It should launch in mid-June.
Nando’s will open in Worthing before the end of the year, the Worthing Herald reports.
Chinese restaurant and cocktail bar concept Tattu opens its second venue on East Parade in Leeds on 9 June. It joins the original Tattu on Spinningfields in Manchester.
Pub company Unique Hospitality Management has launched a new steak and seafood concept at the Wheatsheaf Pub & Grill at Bow Brickhill near Milton Keynes. The £120,000 refurb of the pub will also bring events including Surf & Turf nights and a butchery masterclass.
Birmingham-based Japanese concept Yakinori is opening a second restaurant in Bristol.
Celebrity chef Gino d’Acampo is to open a branch of his My Restaurant concept on Chalk Farm Road in Camden. The 150-cover site will open in July. The brand has previously announced new restaurants for Liverpool and Harrogate over the summer.
Marston’s has applied for permission to build a new 150-cover pub restaurant in Workington in Cumbria, the local newspaper reports.
US burger concept Smashburger opened on Southgate Street in Bath this week.
Ikoyi, a new restaurant specialising in west African food, will open at St James’ Market on 15 July. It will be a 48-cover unit, designed by Studio Ashby, with more space at a small bar.
The Eighty Six List group is to launch a month-long series of pop-up restaurants in the events space at Borough Market. The four chefs taking part include Conor Sheehan and Jackson Berg from ‘movable’ concept Xiringuito and Freddie Janssen and Sebastian Myers of Snackbar. Each pop-up will run for three days, starting on 1 June.