Steve Drake, who left his role as chef-patron of Drake's in Ripley in August, is to open a new restaurant in Surrey.
Sorrel will open on the site of Little Dudley House in Dorking in spring following a "full refurbishment". It will feature a 40-seat restaurant and bar. Steve (pictured here with fellow Roux Scholar Sat Bains) received the keys for the site, 77 South Street, yesterday.
As chef-patron, Steve will oversee a team of 15. He has signed a 10-year lease on the restaurant, which will boast open fires and a lounge with a bar.
The chef, who held a Michelin star at Drake's until his departure this summer, told The Caterer that the food at Sorrel will be inspired by "simplicity and discovery". "It's a style I've been constantly refining," he said.
The 2001 Roux Scholar left his eponymous restaurant Drake's, in Ripley, Surrey, at the end of August as he and his wife Serina finalised their divorce. He continues to own and operate the Anchor pub, situated across the road from Drake's in Ripley.
He said: "I can't wait to get back to doing what I love."
Steve and Serina Drake took over Michel's restaurant on Ripley High Street and transformed it into Drake's in 2004, after Steve left his head chef position at Drakes on the Pond in Abinger Hammer, Surrey. Drake's earned a Michelin-star the following year and has retained one until the most recent guide.
In September, Serina Drake announced the promotion of Fred Clapperton to head chef following Steve's departure.
Clapperton joined Drake's in 2012 as a demi chef de partie and worked his way up through the brigade before being made sous chef in 2013.