Pesto, the north west-based pub and restaurant chain owned by La Tasca founder Neil Gatt, is planning to open 10 more sites under its Pesto in a Pub format next year after securing its third site for the concept. The group, which its in talks about raising new funds for the format’s expansion, is currently converting its third Punch Taverns site, the former Prune Park Inn pub in Allerton, West Yorkshire to the format, with an opening planned for next week. The company is close to securing a managed house in the Wirral for its fourth opening under the brand and is believed to be talks with Punch regarding taking a fifth site before the end of the year. The Allerton opening will be Pesto’s seventh site, it operates four restaurants, since the company was formed in 2006. Gatt told the Bradford Telegraph he hopes to open 10 more sites next year, including more in Yorkshire. Earlier this year, Gatt told M&C Report that he was impressed with Punch’s innovative approach and willingness to invest in the sites and believed this opened up a lot of opportunities to roll out the concept. He said: “They are very willing to listen to our ideas and therefore there is no real need to talk to anyone else when it comes to looking for further opportunities.” The company launched its first pub site, the Cabbage Hall in Tarporley, in November last year, before opening its second Punch lease in April, in Widnes.