Eater has learnt that three of Icelandic-born chef Agnar Sverrisson’s restaurant group, of which Texture in Marylebone is the flagship site, are for sale and are expected to close. The properties which together comprise the group’s wine bar brand 28-50, are currently being marketed for an undisclosed sum.
The Texture Restaurant Group was established in 2007 when the flagship site, whose full name is Texture Restaurant & Champagne Bar — which serves “modern European food with Scandinavian influences” — opened on Portman Street in Marylebone. Soon after opening, the restaurant won a Michelin star, which it has maintained ever since.
The group expanded three years later, when Sverrisson partnered with sommelier Xavier Rousset, to open a wine bar and restaurant called 28-50, on Fetter Lane in 2010. A third followed in 2012, on Marylebone Lane. The most recent opening was in 2013 when the group opened a third 28-50 on Maddox Street in Mayfair. Eater understands from multiple sources that all three 28:50 restaurants are for sale.
The 28-50 wine bar-restaurants take their name from the latitudes within which most of the world’s vineyards are located. The sites each serve modern European food, much of which is available in sharing format, as well as an extensive wine list with many bins available by the glass, carafe, as well as by bottle. 28-50 was among the first in London to offer such an extensive range of wines in those smaller formats.
Sverrisson, a contemporary and former mentor of Hide’s Ollie Dabbous (who worked as head chef at Texture between 2009 and 2011), rose from junior sous chef to head chef at Raymond Blanc’s famous Oxfordshire restaurant, Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons.
News of the restaurant’s fate fits with the pattern of an increasing number of established brands — most recently, Prescott & Conran’s surprise triple-closure announcement yesterday — being forced to sell and/or close: A result of the much-cited strains placed on the industry following rent and business rate increases, increased competition and a devalued pound.
An earlier version of this article stated that Texture Restaurant itself was for sale. Its owners, via a spokesperson, have told Eater that this is not currently the case.