Michelin Chef Takes On Wimbledon Common Pub

Fox and Grapes to re-open in February

The historic Fox and Grapes pub by Wimbledon Common is going to be taken over by the owner of a two-star Michelin Mayfair restaurant.

It did have an uncertain future after former owner, the Massive Pub Company, went into administration. But now French brothers Claude and Cedrick Bosi are to take it on.

Claude Bosi is the chef patron of the exclusive Hibiscus restaurant in Maddox Street, where two courses on a midweek night cost £60.

But they will not be providing the same menu, with planned dishes including coq au vin, chicken Kiev, sausage and mash, fish pie and sharing platters of roasted meats. A bar menu will offer pork scratchings, sausage rolls and pork pies.

The Bosi brothers are not new to the pub trade having operated the Bib Gourmand-rated Bell Inn, Ludlow, Shropshire, which closed in February.

The Fox and Grapes has earned a place in football history for many reasons - from 1868-1888 it was used as the changing rooms by what later became Wimbledon Football Club.

The pub subsequently hosted a drinking session by the players of Wimbledon the night before they beat Liverpool in the 1988 FA Cup final. In 2002 it was where a group of disgruntled Dons' fans started plans to set up AFC Wimbledon in response to their club's relocation to Milton Keynes.

It was also the setting for a performance by jazz legend George Melly in the early 1980s.

A refit is now underway at the Camp Road pub, with the re-opening planned for early February.

November 11, 2010

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