Friday five: the week's most-read hospitality stories

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the week's most-read hospitality stories

Related tags Santiago Lastra Restaurant Mexican cuisine MJMK restaurants Tattu The Vurger Co Creative Restaurant Group Endo Kazutoshi Pret a manger QSR

New openings from Santiago Lastra and MJMK, Creative Restaurant Group, and Permanently Unique Group were among this week's most-read stories.

- Mexican chef Santiago Lastra has chosen Mayfair for the location of his second London restaurant. The chef behind Michelin-starred restaurant KOL in Marylebone will open regional Mexican restaurant Fonda​ on Mayfair’s Heddon Street this year once again in partnership with MJMK. Fonda takes its name from the family-owned restaurants in Mexico that serving traditional dishes in an informal setting, each inspired by personal recipes from the generations that came before. The new restaurant is described as building on this concept to showcase recipes from across the country, from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Coast, with a focus on the classics that he seeks out on visits home.

- Creative Restaurant Group is relaunching its 20 Berkeley Street modern British restaurant in Mayfair as a Japanese grill and sushi bar. NIJU​ will be overseen by the group’s culinary director Endo Kazutoshi, who also is also behind the Michelin-starred Endo at the Rotunda in Shepherd’s Bush, Sumi in Notting Hill and upcoming Whitehall restaurant Kioku by Endo. 20 Berkeley Street has only been trading for a little over six months having launched in summer last year. The venue’s launch executive chef Ben Orpwood - whose CV includes Gordon Ramsay Group’s Lucy Cat, Caprice Holdings and Zuma - is understood to have moved on from Creative Restaurant Group. Kazutoshi has appointed head chef Chris Golding, alongside David Bury as head sushi chef.

- Permanently Unique Group (PUG), the team behind Manchester restaurant Fenix and modern Chinese brand Tattu, will open Italian-American restaurant Louis​ in Hardman Square in Spinningfields in the autumn. Described as ‘a love letter to the Italian-American restaurants of New York’ the restaurant has been incubated over a three-year period, according to PUG. The menu has been developed and will be overseen by executive chef Ippokratis Anagnostelis, who recently launched Greek restaurant Fenix. He will bring an understanding of how the Mediterranean influence has shaped Italian American cuisine with a concise selection of classic Italian-American dishes.

- Pret A Manger has cut the prices​ of its six best-selling items following high profile prise increases it introduced last year. The sandwich chain has slashed the price of its most popular sandwiches and baguette, with prices having decreased by 12% on average and one product now being sold for a £1 cheaper, marking a 25% price reduction. Products receiving the price cuts are its pole and line caught tuna baguette, posh cheddar baguette, jambon beurre, egg mayo sandwich, tuna and cucumber sandwich, and cheese toastie.

- Vegan fast-food restaurant group The Vurger Co​ has closed its final three restaurants less than a year after being bought out of administration. Co-founder Rachel Hugh said that The Vurger Co’s remaining restaurants in Manchester, Brighton and London’s Shoreditch had closed their doors ‘for the last time’. Hugh cited a ‘perfect storm’ of challenges as having contributed to the business’ demise including soaring coats, plunging sales, and a decline in both customer and investor confidence.

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