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Chez Léon to open in London

07 December 2011 by
Chez Léon to open in London

Famous Belgian restaurant Chez Léon is set to come to London, with the opening of a site in the West End in January.

Renowned for its moules frites and hearty Flemish classics, the London restaurant will be the first international branch of the Léon de Bruxelles franchise. It has been brought to the UK by Duncan Shakeshaft, CEO of hospitality and hotels for the Triangle Group, an asset management and advisory firm.

Located in Cambridge Circus, the restaurant will seat 220 people with 12 bar covers and 39 seats on the terrace.

Head chef Jessica Lavender will oversee the kitchen, having joined from the Hilton Sydney. Restaurant manager Eric Kebbab will head up front of house. He previously worked at the Michelin-starred Umu and Marco Pierre White's Criterion in London.

The restaurant's interior follows a more contemporary take on the Belgian original, with sleek black and brick red leather banquettes paired with dark wood chairs, white and black tiled walls and parquet wooden floors.

The menu at Léon De Bruxelles will offer its signature list of 11 variations of mussel dishes next to a range of hearty brasserie and Flemish classics. These include traditional fish soup, the Smelts, small fried fish with tartar sauce, as well as Flemish Carbonnade of beer braised beef with frites, and a selection of waffles.

The drinks list will feature Léon De Bruxelles' own range of micro brewed beers and lager alongside world wines and cocktails, available from the bar.

Entrepreneur Léon Vanlanker opened Chez Léon back in 1893 on Rue Des Bouchers in the heart of Brussels, a stone's throw from the Grand Palace. Today the group owns nine restaurants, with the Léon De Bruxelles franchise totalling 67 sites in France, including a flagship restaurant on the Champs Elysees in Paris.

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By Kerstin Kühn

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