Bo London will open its doors on Thursday 6th December 2012. Located in Mill Street in Mayfair, the restaurant will feature the “X-Treme” Chinese cuisine of chef patron Alvin Leung from 2 Michelin starred Bo Innovation in Hong Kong.
A native of the UK (Alvin was born in London), Bo London realises the chef’s lifetime ambition - to open a restaurant in the capital and become part of its dynamic restaurant culture.
He comments: “London has this unique energy and just feels different from any other city I’ve been to. It has a wonderful rich history of tradition, ceremony and craftsmanship and as long as that is respected, there is also a celebration of innovation and modernism. It seems to filter into every corner - whether it’s design, fashion, music, visual art or even its dynamic food scene. I’m really looking forward to opening Bo London and becoming part of it.”
Bo London will introduce Alvin’s signature cooking style, “X-treme Chinese” to the city, playing with ingredients and techniques with immeasurable precision and combining centuries old recipes with modern cooking methods. The self taught chef breaks down perceptions of traditional and regional Chinese food, taking his guests to the “X-treme” and hopes to revolutionise Chinese gastronomy in London, creating an entirely new dimension for his diners to explore.
The menu at Bo London exemplifies Alvin’s ability to surprise. It will highlight not only favourite dishes from Bo Innovation in Hong Kong, but will also debut new culinary creations inspired by British cuisine and culture. Not one to shy away from controversy, Alvin will also include his renowned “Sex on the Beach” dish on the menu in London. Initially created to raise awareness of HIV and AIDS in Hong Kong, the dish features an edible “used condom”. At Bo London, the dish will be offered at an £8 supplement to the main menu, with all proceeds going directly to the Elton John AIDS Foundation (ejaf.com).
Apart from the main dining area which will seat 32 guests, the ground floor interior of Bo London will accommodate 10 guests in an entrance bar, which will open with lunch service and serve selected dim sum throughout the day. Two “semi-private” dining areas are available within the main room’s design, one of which will be a Chef’s Table seating up to 8 guests and will afford diners a glimpse at the action behind Alvin’s “X-treme” cuisine. A more intimate setting is available on the lower ground with a Private Dining Room – seating 20 guests - utilising subtle lighting and original finishes to provide customers with a personal space to savour the theatre of the kitchen. Bo London will be open for both lunch and dinner and will offer set price menus.
The interiors, created by leading London interior designers Your Studio, take inspiration from the four natural elements – fire, air, water and earth. As with the cuisine, this traditional approach to the design has been modernised for a more urban feel. The natural warmth of wood will complement the textures of smooth marble, coarse-cut granite and hand crafted metal work. The result is a sleek, calming space offering the perfect backdrop to enjoy the excitement of the menu. The lower ground will add an extra dimension utilising a game of shadow and light taking inspiration from Hong Kong’s Wan Chai district skyline at night.
ALVIN LEUNG - The biography
Born in London, chef Alvin Leung grew up in Toronto, before returning to the UK to get a degree in environmental science.
He worked for several successful decades as a sound engineer in Hong Kong and owned noise-control equipment production factories in China.
Throughout his life Alvin loved to cook. His travels gave him the opportunity to experience different cuisine styles, different restaurant cultures and different approaches from traditional tomodern, exploring Chinese and western attitudes and creative approaches. Until this point only friends and family enjoyed the results of his cooking.
In 2003, encouraged by those who knew him, Alvin agreed to take over a 25-seat restaurant from a friend after its chef left.
During this time, his emerging talent for the more creative aspects of the professional kitchen was developed. He embraced modernity whilst respecting the traditions of Chinese cuisine.
In 2005, Leung opened Bo Innovation establishing his own unique brand “X-treme Chinese” cuisine – combining centuries old recipes with modern cooking techniques.
In a world where chefs are hindered by categorisation, Alvin has created his own identity. Breaking down the perceptions of traditional regional Chinese food and introducing his own cooking identity to a world market.
In 2009, Bo Innovation became Hong Kong’s only independent restaurant to be awarded two Michelin stars.
His talents have been recognised, not only in Hong Kong but also on the world stage, where he has represented modern China gastronomy at leading events, including Sydney International Food Festival, Identità Golose in Milan and Lo Mejor de la Gastronomia in San Sebastian.
In 2011, he filmed his first TV series called ‘The Maverick Chef’ where he could show to a larger audience his enthusiasm, creativity and his passion for seasonality and the use of quality local produce and ingredients.
In October 2012, Alvin is bringing his X-treme Chinese cuisine to London.
Bo London in Mayfair will be the chef’s first establishment outside Hong Kong and a return to the city of his birth.