Bourgee steak and lobster to open first site outside Essex

(Photo: Bourgee)

Steak and lobster group Bourgee is to open its third restaurant, in Bury St Edmonds, Suffolk, as part of its plans to become a 'household, nationwide name'. 

The brand was founded by chef Mark Baumann and James Welling, and bills itself as offering ‘affordable luxury’. It already has one site each in Essex’s Southend-On-Sea and Chelmsford.

The Bury St Edmonds venue will open in early May, within the town’s recently restored Cupola House building. The site will be refurbished to the group’s own branding, but retain historic features such as the original central spiral staircase.

Staff will be recruited from the surrounding area, and the restaurant has events planned to help ensure locals feel welcome.

The opening is part of the group’s stated expansion plans, and marks its first site outside Essex. Further sites for 2017 are expected.

“As a truly iconic British market town, filled with heritage and culture, Bury St. Edmunds provided an immediate draw for us to establish our third site,” says director Welling.

“Our aim is to enhance the traditional aesthetics of the [Cupola House] building, whilst giving the area a new restaurant concept that will hopefully help to boost the town for the better.”

“As we branch into a new county…we want to challenge consumer perceptions in East Anglia and show that customers can enjoy the ‘London dining experience’ without having to travel or suffer the over-inflated price tag,” adds Baumann.

Bourgee first opened in Southend in 2014, having invested £1m into that first 140-cover site. With 100 covers inside, it opened with a 40-cover terrace, and a Josper grill in the kitchen to cook the lobster and tapas-inspired dishes also on the menu.

It also offers a wide range of cocktails and Champagne, plus the usual drinks menu of wine and beers.

The group went on to open a 120-cover space in Chelmsford in 2016, but already in 2014 had stated ambitions to open as many as 15 sites in total, aiming for venues across Sussex, Surrey, Kent, and the rest of the UK (except London).

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