Chef-restaurateur Terry Laybourne is closing his Caffe Vivo restaurant in Newcastle to make way for a new wine bar and small plates concept.
After 10 years of operation, the Italian restaurant will host its last service on 25 August before closing “for several weeks” for refurbishment. It will then relaunch as St Vincent, a wine bar focusing on small, independent producers, as well as cocktails, craft beer, vermouths, Amaro and small plates.
The team will be retained, including Emanuele Lattanzi as head chef, and the venue will have fewer covers – closer to 45 than the current 70+.
Laybourne said: “Nobody can stand still in food and hospitality. We’re always looking to freshen things up and we think this change reflects a growing shift in dining and drinking. We’ve enjoyed an explosion in craft beers this last five years or more and now there’s a big shift within the wine sector with new craft wines coming from emerging small vineyards.”
The site, which will operate under Laybourne’s 21 Hospitality Group, will also serve breakfast from 8.30am and brunch at the weekend.
The Newcastle-based 21 Hospitality Group was founded following the opening of 21 Queen Street, now just ’21’, in 1988 on Newcastle’s Quayside, set up by Laybourne, his wife Susan and brother Laurance. Within three years the fine-dining restaurant won a Michelin star and in 1998, Laybourne was awarded The Caterer’s Restaurateur of the Year – Independent Catey Award.
Caffe Vivo was opened in 2008 and the group now also consists of the Broad Chare pub on Newcastle’s Quayside and Café 21, the Porterhouse Butcher and Grill and Saltwater Fish Company in the Fenwick department store.