Henry Harris, chef-director at Soho House Group, has left the company to return to his former London restaurant, Racine.
Harris, who joined Soho House Group last August, has bought the equal share in Racine from former business partner Eric Garnier after a six-month legal battle and is now running the Knightsbridge restaurant on a full-time basis.
Harris launched Racine together with former Fish! operations director Garnier in 2002. Garnier had set out to buy Harris out of the business last year but after difficulties raising the necessary funds a legal battle broke out between the two partners and 10% shareholder kitchen designer James Lee.
Backed by new partner George Bennell of the Fresh Olive Company, along with Lee, Harris bought out Garnier and took control of the restaurant earlier this month while Garnier was away on holiday abroad. "I returned to Racine the day after the court order in which Eric consented to sell his shares and pay £50,000 of our legal costs," Harris said.
He confirmed that a number of front-of-house staff, including the restaurant manager had consequently resigned from the restaurant. "I'm very excited to be back at Racine," Harris added. "Things weren't as they should have been but I feel really humbled by the support I have had from all corners of London's restaurant industry."
Garnier, who insisted that during Harris's absence Racine had been thriving, told Caterer that despite his efforts to remain at the restaurant, he is now focusing on several new opportunities.
"I'm delighted to be free," he said.
By Kerstin Kühn
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