New owner announced for Sunderland's much-loved D'Acqua restaurant

After being on the market for more than a year, D’Acqua restaurant is being bought by a city chef.

Saturday, 13th March 2021, 7:00 am
Plans have been unveiled for a new restaurant at D'acqua
Plans have been unveiled for a new restaurant at D'acqua

Christopher Spence, owner of Emily’s Table dining, has taken over the city centre site, subject to contracts exchanging, to transform it into an upscale dining experience called Undisclosed.

He’s aiming to open the restaurant on May 17, in line with the easing of Lockdown restrictions, following a £10,000 refit of the John Street building.

Christopher will also be looking to hire experienced kitchen hands, waiting staff and cocktail bartenders.

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Christopher Spence is in the process of buying the site

The Chef Patron was inspired by the hidden bars he visited during his time in Australia and his new venture will have a speakeasy influence, with little branding to evoke an exclusive vibe.

Food-wise, the restaurant will feature a gastronomy menu and molecular cocktails.

Christopher opened Emily’s Table nine months ago as a fine-dining experience that you can enjoy in your own home. And after seeing that D’Acqua was for sale, he took the opportunity to expand by making an offer to the owners, Jimmy and Hannah Shadforth to bring his high-end dining to a restaurant setting, with affordable prices.

He said: “We are grateful to Jimmy and Hannah Shadforth, current owners of D’Acqua, for the opportunity, and wish them the very best in their new adventure, Jacob’s Pantry, an outside catering business and for allowing us to fulfil our vision for Undisclosed and carry on from everything they have achieved over the last 13 years.”

The restaurant built up a stellar reputation as D'Acqua

During its time in the city D’Acqua, housed in the old Sunderland and South Tyneside water board building, built up a solid reputation and was regarded as one of the best restaurants in the city.

Christopher aims to build on its reputation and will continue the takeaway service, until the restaurant can open for sit-in dining in May.

He added: “There is no other restaurant in the North East like Undisclosed, and we are excited to bring this unique experience to Sunderland and welcome old and new clients alike.”

The business was put on the market before Lockdown, with the asking price reduced by half last October, from £150,000 to £75,000.

The restaurant is housed in the old water board building

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