Living Ventures goes for Michelin star

Living Ventures managing director Tim Bacon has established a joint venture with chef Aiden Byrne to create a new restaurant in Spinningfields with the intention of bringing a Michelin star to Manchester.

Allied London's development has had its leisure scene improved by Living Ventures' Australasia restaurant, Alchemist bar and Oast House pub in the past couple of years.

The new fine dining venture will occupy several floors of Tower 12, formerly Manchester House, and will be called The Restaurant & Lounge @ Manchester House.

Aiden Byrne was the youngest chef to be awarded a Michelin star in the UK, when he was 22 years old working at Adlards in Norwich. Byrne will join Bacon and his business partner Jeremy Roberts as a shareholder and director of the new venture.

Bacon said: "It is incredible that a city of Manchester's size and pedigree does not have a starred restaurant, there should be three or four at least and we at Living Ventures would like to get the ball rolling. I invite other chefs and proprietors to join in the endeavour."

Bacon wants the new restaurant to 'embody Manchester and its people, celebrating the history and culture'.

Manchester has not had a Michelin starred restaurant since 1975, when The French in the Midland Hotel was among the first restaurants awarded the honour.

Further details are due to be announced in late 2012 and The Restaurant & Lounge @ Manchester House is scheduled to open in March 2013.

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Anything with @ in its name cannot win a Michelin star, by law

By Ted Europa

I think Aiden needs to walk before he can run with his north west offer and concentrate on getting things right with his existing establishment what with the failure at Hillbark and West Kirby.

By Bryn H

Living Ventures have produced my favourite Manchester establishments and I feel the Grill on the Alley should be mentioned before Australasia should. No wonder West Kirby was a failure, there’s the problem right there, it’s in West Kirby… There’s no better group than Living ventures to pull this off. I look forward to it! Why compete with outside of the NW when you can dominate the area?


A good Kirkby lad there.

By John.

Strictly speaking it was in Trafford, not Manchester, but Paul Kitching’s Juniper in Altrincham deservedly had a Michelin star until he moved to Edinburgh in 2008.

By Steve

Is LKS confusing Kirkby with West Kirby? It sounds like! They are two VERY different places!

By Secret Squirrel

Straight away for me, right off the bat, the latter name of the place, ‘….and Lounge’, screams that this will be yet another trendy Manchester eatery, which relies way too much on selling booze to keep its head above water. I’ll be very surprised if Michelin award a star to such a place in all honesty. A star isn’t just about the food, and its only part of the equation, no matter what Michelin say, so even if Aiden is actually at the stove which I doubt, the rest of the package will no doubt be very Living Ventures. Slick, modern, trendy, well financed, but starred material? Australasia was discussed in the same way, when it was obvious that they were nowhere close to what Michelin demand in terms of layout. I just dont see it happening, which may be harsh since the new venture hasn’t even opened yet, although Id love to be proved wrong. Manchester deserves a star, even if as a city, we don’t really get it when it comes to fine dining. Getting one and keeping one are two issues though, and Manchester has proved time and time again, that it is great at booze, and average at food, simply because to subsidise the food sales, they feel the need to bolt on a bar/club.

By Chris Handley