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Tue 8th Jan 2013 - Breaking News - La Tasca to open independent tapas bar
La Tasca to open independent tapas bar: La Tasca Restaurants will unveil the first of its new independent format tapas bars, called Bellota, later this month in Brighton. Bellota will incorporate the UK’s first standalone Cava Bar, in partnership with Grupo Codorniu. Alongside the Cava Bar, Bellota will serve high quality tapas including the award winning Jamon Iberico de Bellota from Guijuelo in Salamanca famous for its black hoofed Iberico pigs. Chief Executive Simon Wilkinson said: “Bellota will operate totally independently and will have no branded signals whatsoever. It will be a contemporary independent Spanish tapas bar serving high quality food and drink products. We have identified a further eight sites that would potentially convert pending a successful trial in Brighton, with a Norte site in Edinburgh and a yet to be named London site being next in the pipeline. There are certain demographics that demand innovation and independence alongside quality and Bellota in Brighton will tick all those boxes. Strategically within our portfolio we want Spanish concepts positioned across every market segment except for fine dining (for the time being that is). We believe this will be achieved with Bar y Tapas, a rejuvenated and re-positioned La Tasca and our successful La Vina concept.” On festive trading Wilkinson added: “Trading for the festive period was on track with expectations, we are three months into the new company and are ahead on both sales and Ebitda, which is a great achievement by the team considering we have a largely un-invested estate and the kicking the high street is taking from on-line Christmas shopping. Particularly pleasing was the continuing double digit growth within our flagship Victoria La Tasca site for the second year running and the performance of our latest minor investments, namely La Tasca Covent Garden and La Vina in Hale both of which were in double digit growth. The best performing site in the country was La Vina in Manchester, which illustrates our resurgence within our north west heartland, which will be further strengthened by the refurbishment of the Trafford Centre site at the end of February, where stage two of new look La Tasca will be launched.”

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