The two-year lease for the 28-cover Roganic restaurant will come to an end on 20 June and, despite initially searching for a replacement site,Rogan has not secured a follow-on unit in London and will instead focus on his existing businesses in Cartmel and Manchester.
A source close to the chef told BigHospitality: “Roganic was always intended as a pop-up, it was a toe-dipping exercise in London. But Simon does want to be in the capital.
“He’s been shopping around and seeing what’s available - there are a couple of things that he’s liked but if either of them even happened they wouldn’t happen this year.
“Simon already has so much on his plate. He’s working 17-hour days at the moment, he’s got a small team and there is just so much going on already.”
Critical first year
Shortly after opening the pop-up on Blandford Street, Rogan told BigHospitality that the reception of the restaurant in its first year would determine the futurefor him and partner Penny Tapsell in London.
“We are confident that we will make a go of it, but the real test is what happens in two years’ time,” he said. “The first year will determine what we’re going to do: whether we stay in London at all, whether we move to a bigger, grander premises or whether we find a nice little site with no pretention and just do exactly the same again.
“There’s always the danger that if we go on to do something bigger and better and spend more money, then people might not think it as quirky as our little place now. So I think it is an important year for us.”
Reservations are still being taken at Roganic for lunch and dinner, Tuesday through Saturday, until the final dinner service on 20 June.
Mr Cooper's at The Midland
Last month saw the opening of The French by Simon Rogan,housed within QHotels’ Manchester property, The Midland Hotel. It was the result of a £400k investment by QHotels into the hotel’s F&B offerings,which would see Rogan manage the fine-dining restaurant and a larger bar and dining room which was named The Colony.
And The Colony is soon set to become Mr Cooper’s, a casual all-day brassiere offering a range of international dishes.
“Mr Cooper’s will be opening mid-summer and will offer around 140 covers,” added the source. “While L’Enclume, Roganic and The French have been restricted to British-only ingredients, this new place is going to have a lot of international influences – it will be much more casual and relaxed.”
But Rogan’s increased workload isn’t just confined to Manchester. L’Enclume, which achieved its second star in the 2013 Michelin Guide,will soon be closing for a month and shifting over to Rogan’s neighbouring casual dining restaurant Rogan & Company while a refurbishment is carried out.
The bedrooms at L’Enclume will also be refurbished, while more will be added above Rogan & Co, bringing the total number of rooms to 17. The Pig & Whistle – Rogan’s pub offering in Cartmel which he took over late last year– also continues to trade as normal.