Chef and restaurateur Anthony Demetre is actively looking to sell his flagship, lauded Mayfair restaurant Wild Honey. A new public listing with property agent Restaurant Property notes the restaurant at 12 St. George Street as commanding £103,000 annual rent.
Demetre recently opened Vermuteria at Coal Drops Yard. With a focus on a very on-trend spirit, an all-day, adaptable offering, and the phrase “the first” in its announcement, it’s in the infancy of a possible roll-out, which may provide an insight into Demetre’s motives for selling up. Or, it’s simply a question of time: Wild Honey opened in 2007, and a decade is a long time in a central London restaurant real estate market that gets ever more expensive.
Demetre, together with his business partner Will Smith, opened the equally lauded Arbutus on Frith Street in Soho (famous for popularising the 500ml carafe serve of wine) in 2006; it closed in the summer of 2016, when it was said the owners would relocate. That site would become Flavour Bastard. His other London opening — Les Deux Salons, a vast French brasserie on the edge of Covent Garden — was sold to Sir Terence Conran and Peter Prescott in 2014. That restaurant closed early last year.
Wild Honey, far from being ‘hot’, was the sort of restaurant that served a regular clientele — a reliable, neither traditional nor modern, broadly French option in the mega-monied surrounds of Mayfair. Its location, too, between Hanover and Berkley Squares, was prestigious; it recently featured in the film Phantom Thread, starring Daniel Day-Lewis.
A spokesperson for Demetre’s restaurants did not immediately return a request for comment on the proposed sale. However it is thought the site could be sold as soon as the end of this month.