Speaking at Hotelympia’s Women in Hospitality Day yesterday (8 March) Roux said she had put an offer on a site with her Italian husband Diego Ferrari, who is head chef at her family’s restaurant Le Gavroche in Mayfair.
She added that she would like the menu to offer a mix of French and Italian food with “accessible” pricing, but had so far struggled to find a suitable location.
“I’ve put an offer on a restaurant," said Roux. "I desperately want to open a place with my husband but it’s exceptionally difficult to find somewhere that has a rent that is affordable.
“It would be something that isn’t quite fine dining, we’d like everyone to feel at ease in our restaurant, obviously with very good food, but I’m going to try and go for accessible pricing.
“A lot of places are closing down. Again this is all about rates and rent, and rent going up every five years is very difficult for a restaurant.
“If all goes to plan it would open this year."
Roux trained at catering college in France before working in the kitchens at Alain Ducasse’s three-Michelin-starred restaurant Le Louis XV in Monaco and then Akrame in Paris.
Her planned new restaurant will have a sustainable focus, and she has partnered with a grower who will transform kitchen waste – including bones and fish – in to compost to grow vegetables.
Women in kitchens
Speaking at the event to mark International Women’s Day, Roux also called on hospitality employers to do more to address the gender imbalance seen at higher levels in kitchens.
“I think we don’t see [as many] women who are head chefs and chef patrons because it’s very difficult at that age, when you become an owner or a head chef, to have a family," said Roux.
“That’s where women are obliged to choose either their career or a family, hence you see very few women head chefs with kids - and I think that’s a massive problem.
“I think employers should be able to talk it through and organise how shifts can be made to work with a family.”