Celebrated chef Mark Hix has confirmed that he will close Hix Soho after 10 years, as reported by Bloomberg’s Richard Vines. Hix said:
We’ve enjoyed a very good run in Soho, but sadly due to rising rents and difficult market conditions we aren’t able to find a way to carry on, a growing problem for restaurateurs across London. I can’t thank our loyal customers and hardworking staff enough, who’ve been the life and soul of HIX Soho.
Hix, awarded an MBE in 2017, both stands alongside the likes of the late Gary Rhodes, Sally Clarke, Fergus Henderson, and Simon Hopkinson as an advocate for pride in British cooking, and breaks from them. As chef director of Caprice Holdings he oversaw the then-spectacular Ivy, the marine glamour of J Sheekey; going out on his own, he opened seven restaurants in four years at the height of the recession, with Tramshed’s colossal Damien Hirst artworks and cavernous ceilings as Hix as the conscientious purchasing of beef and chicken for a menu which then deliberately offered little else.
Down the road, The Rivington Bar and Grill — now Blacklock Shoreditch — that Hix opened on his own steam (and unbeknownst to Caprice) in 2005 took the unadorned route and earned high praise from Jay Rayner for its simplicity, which restored his “faith in restaurants”; it was also a Shoreditch early adopter that then served one of the city’s best burgers. Restaurants at Mayfair’s Browns Hotel, Selfridges, and in the City have followed and since closed.
Hix Soho also had an ace in the hole in the shape of Mark’s Bar, whose three-ingredient approach to drinks and “yes, this place is cool” vibe dovetailed with Hix’s bridging of two schools of London restaurant.
Hix Soho will close on 22 December.