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Paul Rankin closes Cayenne in Belfast

26 March 2013 by
Paul Rankin closes Cayenne in Belfast

Celebrity chef Paul Rankin has closed his flagship restaurant Cayenne in Belfast.

The restaurant, which was Rankin's last remaining business, stopped trading on Sunday 24 March after its lease had come to an end.

The former Ready Steady Cook star, who was forced to sell his Roscoff Brasserie and Rankin Café chain in 2008 after hitting financial difficulties, said he was now looking for new premises.

"We've enjoyed a very loyal and supportive relationship with our customers over all these years and hope that they will bear with us while we find the right location to re-establish our restaurant," he told the BBC.

"Given the change in the Shaftesbury Square area over the past number of years, it doesn't make sense to undertake the necessary investment required to continue to operate there at this time."

Rankin, who won Northern Ireland's first Michelin star in 1991, added that recent disturbances in the area made it unsuitable for the business.

He said: "Location is key in the restaurant business, particularly at a time of economic downturn, and our current setting is no longer sustainable. The disturbances around the flag protest, particularly during the Christmas period, also confirmed our decision."

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