Steve and Claire Love to close Loves restaurant in Birmingham
Steve and Claire Love are to close Loves restaurant in Birmingham at the end of this month, and plan to re-open in Warwickshire "in the near future".
The move comes six years after the couple moved their eponymous restaurant from Warwickshire to the city, gaining three AA rosettes within four months of opening.
But they have decided not to renew their lease on the Canal Square restaurant, which has a 32-seat main dining room and a private room for eight.
Eventually, they hope to purchase a freehold property in Warwickshire and are actively seeking an investor or group of investors to help them do so.
In the meantime, they plan to focus on their consultancy business Loves Consultancy, their young family, as well as becoming more heavily involved in the Bocuse d'Or.
"Claire and I have had an enormously successful and really enjoyable time here in Birmingham. However there are so many things that we have going on and maintaining the restaurant in the city was going to become increasingly more difficult," Steve said.
The Loves hope the decision will give them more time to concentrate on their consultancy work, which sees them advising businesses on menus, kitchen design, front of house training and creating wine lists.
"We could literally work eight days a week just on this part of the business," Claire said. "After 15 years of running our own business, we are now finding so many people like us, small independent businesses, that need support in some way."
In addition to the consultancy, Claire also runs a wine business called ClaireLovesWine (www.claireloveswine.co.uk).
Meanwhile, Steve, who is a former Roux Scholar (1997) and National Chef of the Year winner, as well as being a Master of the Culinary Arts, hopes to play a more active role in the UK team for the Bocuse d'Or culinary competition, the world finals of which are next due to be held in Lyon in January 2017.
Love finished a close second place to Adam Smith, head chef at the Devonshire Arms hotel in Yorkshire, at last year's Bocuse d'Or National Selection, which took place at Hotelympia in April 2014.
So close were the two chefs that it was decided that both should have the chance to work alongside Adam Bennett as he prepared for Lyon 2015, in which he finished 10th.
He also plans to run a series of pop-up restaurants over the next 12 months, details of which will be announced online.
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