It’s hasta luego to a popular Spanish tapas eatery but bonjour to an existing Belgian seafood restaurant that will take its place.
Many will be sad to hear that La Tasca in Cuppin Street, Chester, closed for good on Sunday.
An email reminded customers there were other La Tasca sites elsewhere and signed off: “We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your custom, we appreciate your loyalty throughout the years.”
But as one door closes another door opens, as explained by restaurateur Duncan Ryalls, whose Moules a go-go restaurant is moving from Watergate Row into the old La Tasca building.
“We are the only restaurant on The Rows. You can’t trade on The Rows,” he said. “We want to get on street level where everyone else is.”
Duncan says the parent company behind La Tasca, the Casual Dining Group, also owns Las Iguanas, Cafe Rouge and Bella Italia. He suspects the company felt it was competing against itself and said La Tasca outlets had also closed in Leeds and Glasgow.
He added: “Our new premises are slightly smaller but will be more high profile and it’s the same rent. We are moving everything out; lock stock and barrel.”
Duncan is sad to be leaving The Rows where he has been for a total for 22 years including his other venture, Dos Americas, which closed a few years ago.
But he is looking forward to a fresh start. He feels there will be more of a bistro atmosphere at the new place – which will be over two levels as now – but the food will be ‘exactly the same’ with the same freshly caught mussels for which the restaurant is known.
The eatery will be close to what has been dubbed the new restaurant quarter in Pepper Street but he believes his independently-owned business will offer something different.
“Chester will flourish with a mixture of chains and independents,” continued Duncan, who said a total monopoly by the chains would result in a bland offer and ‘clone town’.
“Chester has got a thriving independent scene and we would like to part of that and I think the new location will be better suited to us.”
He hopes the new Moules can open around June 12 or 13.