Housed next door to the neighbourhood-style restaurant from which it takes its name and launching in November, Bar Levan will draw inspiration from classic Parisian spots like Aux Deux Amis and Septime La Cave, serving a menu of ‘dynamic and playful’ wines alongside a selection of bar snacks.
The 34-seat wine bar will be the first project from Gurney and Bushnell following their amicable split from business partner Nicholas Balfe, which was announced earlier this month.
“Our love of Paris, and the wine bar scene over there is no secret, we wanted to bring a slice of that to south London,” says Gurney.
Bar Levan’s wine list will follow a similar ethos to its eponymous sister restaurant with a focus on organic and biodynamic wines, alongside a selection of older vintages and unique ‘one offs’ by the glass.
The food menu has been created by the Levan kitchen and will include rillettes; charcuterie; cheese; mussels on crisps; and a croque monsieur.
A series of guest chef takeovers are also planned in the coming months.
The launch of Bar Levan follows the recent closure of Larry’s, the New York-inspired diner that Gurney, Bushnell and Balfe launched in March 2020 – just four days before the first national Coronavirus lockdown.
Speaking to The Standard, Gurney said the restaurant had become ‘untenable’.
He said: “As a concept, it was a casualty of a number of things. Firstly, Covid-19, which meant we had to close it the day we opened it, followed by the energy crisis and wider rising costs, all of which meant it was untenable.
“We did everything we could to keep it open but were sadly unsuccessful.”