Chef Merlin Labron-Johnson is to open a wine bar and grocery store close by to his farm-to-table restaurant Osip in Bruton, Somerset. Set to launch in January, The Old Pharmacy – named after the 16th Century building in which it’s housed – will be inspired by the épiceries (grocery shops) of rural France. Working alongside Labron-Johnson on the project will be Osip operations manager David Durban, whose CV also includes stints at Petersham Nurseries and Frenchie. The Old Pharmacy will be open all day for coffees and lunches, which will include seasonal salads made using garden vegetables grown by the chef. In the evening, the wine bar will serve a selection of small plates alongside a list of natural wines, and beers.


High Street, Bruton, Somerset BA10 0AB


By some margin the most ballsy opening of 20201. Alex Ghalleb is spearheading a multi-faceted restaurant venture within the grounds of a Grade I-listed former church that will include a restaurant headed by high profile Israeli chef Elior Balbul. The former Soho House general manager and ex-managing partner at Gold restaurant in Notting Hill expects to open Chameleon in early next year at One Marylebone, which was until recently used as an events space. The restaurant will seat guests within nine luxurious outdoor greenhouses – the largest of these seating up to 30 people – and a tented lounge area with a separate, more casual menu. Balbul is well known in Israel having headed the stove at a number of high profile restaurants in Tel Aviv including Catit and Blue Sky.