But Gill has now closed the site, admitting extended building work on a hotel opposite and muted growth in the local area began to impact trading. The team are now focusing their energy on a new project outside their Clapham heartland.
Speaking to BigHospitality at Food On The Edge in Galway, Gill described Paradise Garage as a ‘successful failure’.
“We had an excellent team and an incredible first year, we won lots of awards and had great reviews,” says Gill.
“It’s nuts because it was also a year of great financial success, exceeding all expectations, but then it just started to level out and something wasn’t right.
“We came under some difficulties, there was building going on at a hotel in front of us and the area didn’t grow as quickly as we expected. We tried lots of different things but it just became more challenging, so we decided to cut our losses and focus our energies on other things.”
The chef has sold the Paradise Garage site to a new operator and plans to take his restaurant business in to central London for the first time.
Details are firmly under wraps for now, so it’s not clear if the team plan to recreate the laid-back farmhouse feel of their Clapham restaurants The Dairy, Counter Culture and The Manor in the inner city.
“We have a new opening that the intention is to open in July 2018,” says Gill. “We decided the location was really important, [so] this is our move in to central London. I’m dying to tell you what it is but I can’t.”
Dublin-born Gill arrived in London in the late-1990’s to work at Marco Pierre White’s The Oak Room, and has cooked at Noma and Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons.
He opened The Dairy in 2013 followed by The Manor in 2014 and Counter Culture last year.