Friday five: the week's top restaurant news stories

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Friday five: the week's top restaurant news stories

Related tags Greg Marchand Frenchie Covent Garden richard caring Le Caprice Bib Gourmand Sticks'n'Sushi The fat duck

This week's most read articles include the closure of Greg Marchand's Frenchie restaurant in Covent Garden, the return of Le Caprice and the latest crop of Michelin Bib Gourmands.

- Greg Marchand has closed the Covent Garden outpost of his acclaimed Parisian bistro Frenchie​ after eight years, blaming the ‘increasingly challenging’ trading environment in London. In a statement on Instagram, Marchand thanked the restaurant’s guests, suppliers, landlord, and team who ‘worked tirelessly to make Frenchie rock’, adding that the decision to close had ‘not been made lightly’. Marchand opened Frenchie Covent Garden on Henrietta Street in 2016 as a sister restaurant to his revered, (now Michelin-starred) Frenchie restaurant, Frenchie To Go, Frenchie Wine Bar and Frenchie Wine Shop on Rue du Nil in Paris. 

- Richard Caring will relaunch his iconic London restaurant Le Caprice​ at The Chancery Rosewood, the luxury hotel and leisure redevelopment of the former US Embassy building in Mayfair. As reported by CoStar News, Caring is currently in talks with the building’s owners, Qatari Diar, to bring Le Caprice to the £1bn hotel, retail, restaurant and leisure destination on Grosvenor Square. A source with knowledge of the talks has subsequently confirmed the plans to Restaurant. Qatari Diar is also reportedly looking to bring high-profile New York restaurant Carbone to The Chancery Rosewood for what would be its first London location.

- Twenty restaurants have been awarded a Bib Gourmand in the Michelin Guide for Great Britain & Ireland 2024.​ Coming ahead of the presentation of the Michelin Guide 2024 next week, restaurants including Higher Ground in Manchester, Harneet Baweja’s Empire Empire in London’s Notting Hill, and Adam Handling’s Windsor gastropub The Loch & The Tyne are among those to receive a Bib this year, which is awarded to restaurants ‘offering particularly good quality, good value cooking’. Nineteen of the 20 restaurants to receive a Bib Gourmand this year are new additions to the Guide.

- Investor McWin has bolstered its hospitality portfolio with the acquisition of a majority shareholding in Sticks’n’Sushi.​ The investor, which recently acquired Italian-restaurant group Big Mamma, has bought the 27-strong Denmark-born premium casual sushi and yakitori-focused business, which operates 12 restaurants in Denmark, 12 in the UK and three in Germany. CEO Andreas Karlsson will continue to lead Sticks’n’Sushi in ‘its next chapter of growth’ having joined the company in 2011 and spearheaded its international expansion.

- The Fat Duck has launched an abridged, lower-priced version of its tasting menu.​ Billed as a ‘taster of the tasting menu’, the Sensorium Select menu is priced from £225 per person, a figure that is at least £70 lower than its The Full Sensorium menu, which ranges from £295 to £395 per person, and is available throughout February. According to the three Michelin-starred Bray restaurant’s website the more affordable menu gives guests the opportunity to experience a ‘specially curated series of dishes that capture the creative core of the Sensorium menu’ offering a ‘simple, intense way of exploring exactly what The Fat Duck is all about’.

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