The chef has acquired the 50-cover Collingwood pub in West Kirby which he is reopening this week.
The move sees him walk away from his partnership with the Hillbark hotel in nearby Frankby, where he opened an eponymous fine-dining restaurant in July. Head chef Stewart Warner will remain at the 18-bedroom boutique hotel and wedding venue to oversee the restaurant following Byrne’s departure.
Byrne, who previously worked at Danesfield House in Marlow, Buckinghamshire, and the Dorchester's Grill restaurant in London, told Caterer he decided to quit the Hillbark to focus on the new venture.
“It has been my intention to open another Church Green type restaurant for some time and I had my eye on the Collingwood for a few months,” he said.
“It was a mutual decision to end my involvement with the Hillbark as I don’t have enough time to concentrate on all three restaurants. Stewart has been working with me for six years and we realised that it was time for him to do his own thing so he is staying on at the Hillbark as head chef.”
Byrne added that the Collingwood would be a family restaurant offering anything from fish and chips to his more refined signature dishes. “For the first month or two we will offer just a bar menu but come mid-January we will launch a similar menu to the Church Green,” he said.
Byrne opened the Church Green, which holds three AA rosettes, in 2008.
The owners of the Hillbark hotel were unavailable for comment.
By Kerstin Kuhn
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