A globally renowned Brazilian chef whose two-Michelin-starred Rio de Janeiro restaurant Oteque was voted number 47 in the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list this week will open a new venue off Oxford Street in London before the end of the year.
Chef Alberto Landgraf who began his career in the early 2000s in London will open an “casual and fun” restaurant called Bossa beneath the Brazlian consulate on Vere Street; a spokesperson told Eater the chef “will bring the wealth of Brazilian flavours to the city that means so much to him.” It will replace the now-closed Maroush Lebanese restaurant. His spokesperson said it will open, “if there is no delay, at the end of this year.”
“I am really happy that my first international project is going to happen in London. It is very emotional for me as I started my career twenty-two years ago in this city. When returning to Brazil six years later, I never thought I would come back where everything started to open my own restaurant,” Landgraf said in a statement shared with Eater.
“It seems like a wild dream to bring Brazil not only to London but to Europe. I want to make it really special, so I will bring to the city the best part of my Oteque team. As you can imagine, it will not be a traditional place, but it will also not be the second Oteque. We will pamper you with contemporary Brazilian food and a very strong wine and cocktail list in a fun, relaxed, warm atmosphere and I really hope you will enjoy it.”
Landgraf is of German and Japanese heritage; he says he was was raised with great respect for nature, seasons and good produce. His Japanese mother “taught him ethics and discipline, which are always present in everything he does, and nurtured his poetical soul,” his spokesperson said.
In the early 2000s, then a physics graduate, Landgraf came to London to learn English. His accidental move into hospitality came only after he found he needed an income to stay in the city. He worked for both Tom Aikens (!) and Gordon Ramsay (!!) before returning to Brazil in 2006 to open his first restaurant. Epice opened in Sao Paulo in 2008 and quickly won recognition, including a Michelin star.
Oteque opened in Rio de Janeiro in 2018, “focusing on his Japanese heritage not through ingredients, but through simplicity, precise technique and high ethics.” He visited London in February this year to cook at Shoreditch’s Lyle’s with chef James Lowe. His talent for cooking over fire stood out. “Alberto specialises in creating dishes with the diverse seafood landed in the water around Rio,” the pre-event blurb reads. For the collaboration, Landgraf brought special ingredients like raw Brazilian cashew fruit, variations of manioc (Brazil’s main starch), tucipi (the naturally fermented juice of the manioc root), and raw Brazil nuts for ice cream. Like Epice, Oteque was a hit from the off: just a few months after its opening, it won a spot on Latin America’s 50 Best list (it is now number 12) and the first Michelin star, followed by the second star a year later.
He will hope for success here, while Londoners can look forward to his bringing something quite different to the capital.
Correction: 21 July 2022, 8.33 p.m.: An earlier version of this article stated that Bossa would be a fine dining restaurant; it will be a more casual place.