Britain may be saying au revoir to the EU but that won’t stop Chester saying bonjour to a new French brasserie.
Côte Restaurants are busy transforming 36 Bridge Street, formerly occupied by the Christy linen shop, into a 140-cover restaurant.
The chain gained change-of-use planning and listed building consent as well as a premises licence last summer.
A large extension is being built at Row level to the rear of the grade II-listed building, ready for the opening towards the end of March.
Spokeswoman Genevieve Sparrow said: “We will be making the most of the original features with exposed stone and timber beams on the ground floor level, giving the restaurant a unique and distinctive character.
“In terms of jobs, the site will employ around 40 people across roles in management for both front and back of house, waiting and kitchen staff. We would look to recruit predominantly from the local area with some experienced staff transferring internally.”
Côte offers gluten free and children’s menus. Among the main dishes available on the à la carte menu are beef bourguinon at £14.95, roast duck breast at £14.50, Breton fish stew at £13.95 and rump of lamb priced £14.95.
A document accompanying the plans explained: “Côte is a well renowned restaurant, the concept of which is based on the many famous bistros of Paris. Inspired by new trends, Côte is dedicated to serving authentic classic brasserie dishes with a modern twist, using high quality ingredients at great prices.
“Côte are open every day for breakfast, through to lunch and dinner. Côte’s atmosphere is informal and friendly.
“Accordingly, unlike some other, more formal restaurants, Côte provide for a range of diners. This creates a high degree of pedestrian flows, including customers consuming a full meal through to those purchasing a simple snack.
“Thus, Côte’s customers comprise a mixture of dwell-times, which would not only encourage pedestrian movement but also promote linked trips with other uses within the city centre.
“Given the nature of Côte’s operation described above, a new restaurant would contribute to the vitality and viability of Bridge Street and the city centre .”