Kornicis will launch its new brand, We Are Bar, at the end of this month – with the conversion of its Jamies wine bar site in Bishopsgate, MCA has learnt.
The opening is the first of at least five planned conversions from the existing 16-strong Kornicis estate to the brand, before a focus on expansion into London villages through acquisitions.
Richard Stringer, who led a management buy-in of the business in October last year, told MCA he hoped to complete the next two conversions early in 2017 and to begin acquiring new sites before the end of next year.
Stringer insisted he was still committed to retaining the Jamie’s brand as solely a City business. He said he expected there to ultimately be up to eight Jamies, potentially including some conversions to the brand.
On the format for We Are Bar, he said: “It has been created to be the best neighbourhood bar in the City. We think there have been some great developments in cocktail bars and in beer bars but when it comes down to the all-round neighbourhood bar with a great range of wines, beers and cocktails suitable for the City drinker there’s a gap, which we aim to fill.”
Food will be served from 9am, with a signature breakfast dish of eggy bread with bacon, banana and maple syrup. The daytime menu will run from 11.30am until 10pm with a focus on burgers, sharing plates and hot sandwiches.
A wide selection of wines will be complemented by a selection of world beers and the venue will stay open until 2am on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.
On expansion plans, Stringer said: “Five or six of our current bars have been earmarked as We Are Bar conversions – and there might be one or two more – and then we’ll look to expand beyond the City – into the London villages. We think this would work very well in places like Clapham and Islington. Then in time we’d like to move beyond that into the London commuter belt.”
On the currently 10-strong Jamies brand, he said: “Jamies will remain a very City-focussed brand. I think we’ll end up with a core of seven or eight really good Jamie’s. One or two of which aren’t currently Jamie’s.”