The company has become one of the first restaurant casualties of the year after shutting its eponymous site on Bristol’s Whiteladies Road last weekend after less than 18 months in the city.
It also appears to have closed its food-led London pub, which launched in 2013.
A message on the Ape & Bird answering machine said: “Unfortunately we are closed due to unforeseen circumstances.”
Polpo launched its first Venetian-inspired restaurant in Soho in 2009 and has since expanded to six London sites and regional locations in Bristol, Brighton and Exeter.
It was also lining up an opening at the £440m Westgate Oxford food and retail development, though MCA reports that this has been put on hold.
When contacted about the Bristol closure Polpo’s managing director Scott Macdonald told The Bristol Post: “I will be making an announcement soon but it’s too premature for me to comment at this stage.”
Polpo also runs two Spuntino sites, in Bristol’s Cargo 2 shipping container development and Soho.
The closure of Ape & Bird marks the third time in recent years a more ambitious restaurant has struggled in Cambridge Circus. Jacob Kenedy’s Italian site Vico shut its doors in 2017 after less than two years at the tourist hotspot, and has since been replaced by Shake Shack.
Belgian restaurant group Leon De Bruxelles also made its UK debut in the area in 2012 but the site is now a McDonald’s.
BigHospitality has contacted Polpo for further comment.