Luca Longobardi and Chris Denney, co-founders of Notting-Hill-based 108 Garage, have announced the launch of a second restaurant, Southam Street, in September.
Formerly a Victorian pub called the West Thirty Six, Southam Street at 36 Golborne Road in Notting Hill, London, will be split across three floors.
The ground floor will feature a Japanese robata grill and Big Green Egg to give meat bold barbecue flavouring. A private BBQ area will also be accessed via a lower ground garden.
On the first floor in the Raw Bar, a Japanese sushi master will create a Nikkei (a fusion of Peruvian and Japanese ingredients) menu and sake will be served in a separate room.
The second floor will house a private member's champagne bar, offering champagnes from Grandes Marques through to smaller-production, artisan brands.
Longobardi moved from Naples to New York aged 21, selling shirts on the street before taking up a job at investment bank VTR Capital.
In 1999 he launched his own international investment bank, State Capital, in Italy, Miami, New York and Brazil. However an accusation of laundering money for the Italian mafia put Longobardi on Interpol's ‘most wanted' list and he was arrested and sent to a maximum-security prison in Brazil alongside criminals such as Colombian drug lord Pablo Rayo Montaño and Italian terrorist Pierluigi Bragaglia.
He was cleared of all charges and released in September 2010, but his business did not survive.
Denney started out as a struggling artist, working as a pot-washer. After deciding to become a full-time chef, he pulled himself up through the ranks. Denny has worked in Michelin-starred restaurants around the world including Hambleton Hall in Oakham, Nahm in Bangkok and the Square in London's St. James's Square.
The pair came together via an advert on Gumtree. They now have several projects in the pipeline including Home Noir, which will combine a members' club with 20 loft apartments, a restaurant, clubhouse and roof deck. The location of Home Noir is yet to be announced.
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