London-based healthy eating restaurant group Abokado has appointed its first managing director as part of its ongoing growth plans for the business. Kara Alderin (pictured above), who joined the company last February as operations director, has been promoted and will join the board.
Alyn Williams has left his role as chef patron at The Wild Rabbit gastropub in Kingham after less than a year. He joined the pub in May 2018 with the intention to split his time between the Cotswolds and his Michelin-starred London restaurant Alyn Williams at The Westbury, but he has now returned to the capital to focus on his Mayfair hotel restaurant full time.
The Byron burger chain has appointed Simon Wilkinson, former head of La Tasca, as its new CEO. Wilkinson oversaw a turnaround of La Tasca from 2011, which led to its acquisition by Casual Dining Group for c.£20m in 2015. Byron, which closed 21 sites since under a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) in 2018, says he will oversee a planned refurbishment of its remaining 53 restaurants.
Adam Simmonds has left Restaurant Adam Handling Chelsea at the Belmond Cadogan Hotel, which opened last month. Simmonds, who previously worked as executive chef at Danesfield House in Marlow-On-Thames, was announced as executive chef of the Chelsea restaurant in September. He previously said he wanted to open his own restaurant following the conclusion of his Test Kitchen pop-up in January 2018.
Sourced Market has appointed Scott Macdonald as managing director. He previously held the same position at Bill’s, which grew from four to 72 sites under his tenure. Macdonald also oversaw the consolidation of Polpo’s estate last year, with the closure of three restaurants. Sourced Market raised £872,980 on Crowdcube in 2018 and is planning to double in size from four to eight sites this year.
Bokan, the rooftop restaurant in Canary Wharf, has appointed Guillaume Gillan as its executive chef. Originally from France, he undertook an apprenticeship at Le Grill in Monaco before moving to London to cook at the Bulgari Hotel. He also spent time as chef de partie at Michelin-starred L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon.
Samira Effa has left her role as head chef at The Box Tree in Ilkley. She joined the team at Simon Gueller’s restaurant in October 2018 after the closure of Alimentum in Cambridge last year, where she was head chef.
Rowley Leigh and Harvey Trollope
Chef Rowley Leigh has been appointed culinary director at Sam Harrison’s upcoming Sam’s Riverside restaurant in west London. Leigh is collaborating with Harrison on everything from kitchen design to menus at the 90-cover brasserie. Head chef will be Harvey Trollope, who previously cooked at The Ritz.
Steve Richards is to step down as CEO of Casual Dining Group (CDG), the operator of Las Iguanas, Bella Italia and Café Rouge, after over five years. He will depart the business at the end of May to join Parkdean Holidays as CEO. A search for Richards’ replacement is currently underway. Rooney Anand, outgoing chief executive of Greene King, was appointed non executive chairman of CDG last year.