First off, they've finalized name. It'll be called The Commune Social. Head chef Scott Melvin tells me that it's a tapas, dessert and cocktail bar "along the lines of [Atherton's] 22 Ships in Hong Kong." Melvin will helm the kitchen there, and Kim Lyle, Table No. 1's pastry chef will be joining him as well. Melvin will be replaced at Table No. 1 by Christopher Pitts, who used to be the sous chef at Sir Elly's in The Peninsula. Cocktails will come courtesy of Rashid Ghuloom, who they've recruited from Hakkasan in London.
As I reported back in December, Atherton and company are banking on the recent wave of gentrification that's washed through northern Jing'an. There has been a spate of openings in the area: Uva, Patachon, Burdigala and, further afield, Malabar and Le Cafe des Stagiaires. As it turns out, my guess as to the location was slightly off. The Commune Social will be about a half a block north on Jiangning Lu. You can click here for a pinpointed map.
When does it open? Surprisingly soon. Melvin says April 1, maybe sooner, for a soft opening.