Updated: Church and State's Yassmin Sarmadi Going Into Former Royal Clayton's Space: Same Idea (Maybe), New Name
Correction: This post inaccurately describes Royal Clayton's as reopening under new ownership. As the co-owners of the British pub, Elizabeth Peterson-Gower and her husband Tony Gower, sold neither the name nor the concept, Royal Clayton's will not be reopening when Yassmin Sarmadi takes over the space. Sarmadi will instead be opening a new pub (see below) with a new name. Peterson-Gower and Gower are currently in negotiations to lease a new space downtown, and have plans to reopen Royal Clayton's (same name, same concept) later on, of which more later. We regret the error. But we're pretty damn happy to report that we've now gone from no Royal Clayton's at all, to two new pubs downtown.
Anne Fishbein Yassmin Sarmadi at Church & State
Original post, published January 24th:
Royal Clayton's, the downtown British pub that closed its doors in December, will be opening them again under new ownership sometime later this year. Yassmin Sarmadi, owner of the downtown bistro Church & State, which is coincidentally right across the street, is taking over the space and will reopen the pub under a new as-yet-to-be-decided name.
Yes, the fact that she (and what she described as limited partners) will now have an English pub right next to a French bistro has occurred to her. She thinks it's as funny as we do. Just think of Industrial Street as the English Channel.
"I'm going to keep it as an English pub," said Sarmadi by phone on Friday. "I think their concept was really good; I'd just execute it differently."
Sarmadi, who bought out her former Church & State partner Steven Arroyo in 2009, says she's still working on the menu, staffing, aesthetics and the specific concept ("we're still playing with the concept; we're not 100% sure yet"), but that Church & State executive chef Jeremy Berlin will be the chef at the new pub as well.
The beer and cocktail list is evolving; Sarah Clarke, also of Church & State, will be doing the wine list. As far as a more definite opening date, Sarmadi said "early 2011" was as specific as she could get right now. We asked Sarmadi if she has plans to open an Italian place downtown too. (Your EU joke here _____.) She just laughed, which you can take any way you want.