A former old water mill in Portishead is undergoing major refurbishment into Mezze Restaurants to secure its future and bring much needed jobs to the town.
Despite the current economic climate, Bristol-based family run company Mezze Restaurants is ploughing ahead and is set to open another venue.
Mezze at The White Lion in the High Street will be the sixth restaurant under their belt and will be the jewel in the crown following a £1.6 million makeover.
The historic inn, which dates back to 1810, was a former old tide mill and the waters of the Bristol Channel used to reach up as far as the mill providing a mooring point for boats.
It was most recently known as the White Lion pub but has been derelict since 2010 and now Mezze is injecting a new lease of life into the venue.
A new heated roof top terrace and sunken Mediterranean gardens are being created, along with an ice cream parlour, a cocktail bar, Mezze restaurant and the A La Carte restaurant.
The venue will landscape its gardens to work with Portishead in Bloom, and its converted skittle alley with new vaulted ceiling will offer a facility for weddings and conferencing.
Mezze offers a vibrant Mediterranean menu created by a team with experience of Browns, Severn Shed, Aqua, Melbournes and Redcliffs.
Mezze owner Alex Tryfonos, of Ham Green, said: “Everyone loves what we do and we feel we are investing and helping to raise the profile of the areas in which we locate, as well as providing new jobs.
“At the heart of every community you will find a community hub and we are certain as a central feature in Portishead High Street, Mezze will fill that void.
“This is certainly our biggest challenge to date. With the venue being an old tidal mill the building has seen better days but with careful restoration we have kept some key features.
“Mezze at The White Lion will be the jewel in our crown and we hope the community will get behind us and welcome the transformation.”
Mezze is growing at a phenomenal rate and now has The Green Dragon in Downend, The Royal George in Thornbury, The Warwick Arms in Clutton, The Ship & Castle in Congresbury and The Anchor, Ham Green.
Mezze at The White Lion opens on Friday July 5, following a series of pre-launch evenings for local residents and a VIP night conducted by a host of local sports stars and celebrities.
Alex added: “We are certain that the transformation of the White Lion will be thoroughly welcomed by Portishead residents and I hope they support this exciting venture.”
For more information visit www.mezzerestaurants.com or call Alex Tryfonos on free-phone 0808 1782045.