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Hamlet pairs with Goin, Styne for upscale concept

LOS ANGELES Hamlet Restaurant Group last week closed its Brentwood location and has invested in a new concept to be developed in that location by acclaimed Los Angeles chef-operators Suzanne Goin and Caroline Styne.

Goin and Styne are known for their fine-dining concept Lucques as well as a more casual tapas and wine bar, called A.O.C. Goin and her husband, chef David Lentz, also have two locations of the seafood concept The Hungry Cat. Plans for the Brentwood location have not yet been disclosed.

Andrew Tavakoli, owner of Hamlet Restaurant Group, said the Brentwood location was better suited for a fine-dining restaurant. The company holds a minority stake in the new endeavor, he indicated.

Hamlet now has seven locations of its upscale-casual concept across the country, and the company plans to start franchising this year.

The group is also developing a fast-casual, burger-centric variant that will use the chain’s original name of Hamburger Hamlet. That concept also is designed for franchising potential.

The original Hamburger Hamlet was a 58-year-old thespian-theme hamburger restaurant concept founded in Los Angeles by actor Harry Lewis and his wife. It was later bought by Prandium Inc., which filed for bankruptcy. Tavakoli bought the then-12-unit chain in 2004.

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