Kleo Tabuku set to open Jesmond restaurant

Chef Kleo Tabuku is set to realise his long-held dream and launch his own restaurant in Jesmond.

Council bosses have approved plans for the former Sale Pepe venue at St George’s Terrace to be turned into Lovage, a Mediterranean-style bistro.

The kitchen will be led by chef and part-owner Kleo, who will be serving up the food he grew up eating.

Kleo has been in the hospitality industry for more than 25 years, having previously worked at hotels including Jesmond Dene House and Wynyard Hall. He also spent time with the group behind the recently opened Novello’s in Washington, which is partnering with him on the new venture.

“It’s extremely exciting and it means I can cook the kind of food I love best, the kind of food we would eat at home but elevated to a very high level,” said Kleo. “It will be about seasonal food and I want to talk to local allotment owners about them being able to provide us with produce we can use, so that our ingredients will always be freshest we can get.

“Flavours from all over the Mediterranean will be combined with seasonal produce and fresh fish and meat,” added Kleo. “Think grilled sardines, fish and meat all simply marinated and accompanied by grilled vegetables and fresh salads, fresh pasta dishes, fresh bread with aioli and hummus.”

Work is underway on transforming the restaurant, which will have 50 covers, and the team hopes Lovage will open in late September.


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