Chef Dan Doherty has confirmed the acquisition of a Marylebone pub in London with business partner Andy Ward.
The lease for the Royal Oak, London W1H, was bought from Golden Age Public Houses off a guide price of £450,000 and the pub is expected to reopen under its new ownership on 19 June following minor refurbishment and the installation of a new kitchen.
Announcing the plans via his Instagram account, the former Duck & Waffle executive chef said: “It’s not in the best state, but it has a beautiful soul, one that we wish to bring back to life through plenty more hard work.
“We have put every penny we have into this, along with some trusty friends, and it’ll take us a while to get it up and running but we will make this work.”
Doherty, who is a presenter and judge on the BBC’s Britain’s Best Home Cook, added: “We have listed building consent to deal with, and maybe some operators would shut for a lengthy period of time and reopen with a fanfare, but we aren’t going to do that.
“I firmly believe pubs are the anchors in a community; facilitating great times rather than dictating them. Because of that, we want to share our vision with our community. We want you to see it at its worst all the way through to its best. With everything in-between.”
Headed up by Patrick Marling, vendor Golden Age Public Houses is an independent pub group that also operates the lease of the Prince in Stoke Newington.
Marling commented: “Selling The Royal Oak will allow us to focus on The Prince, which is a modern community pub in a strong residential neighbourhood. We will look at other similar pubs in London for future expansion.”
Chris Bickle, licensed leisure director at Savills, which represented Golden Age Public Houses, added: “Operator demand for free-of-tie pubs in affluent Central London locations such as Marylebone remains strong.
“In particular, those offering residential accommodation on the upper floors are increasingly hard to come by. As such, The Royal Oak generated significant interest and we are very pleased with the strong result achieved on behalf of our client.”
Doherty launched Duck & Waffle on the 40th floor of London’s Heron Tower as its executive chef in 2012, later becoming chef consultant and director.
He recently left the business and last month revealed plans to open an as-yet unnamed restaurant and bar in New York in partnership with hospitality group Rhubarb.