JJ Goodman and James “Hoppy” Hopkins have been close friends since their teens. Their business partnership started with nothing more than a small loan from JJ’s mum Lizzie. This helped them to open the Covent Garden Cocktail Club on an impossibly tight budget.
JJ and James then quickly started to revolutionise London’s cocktail scene – helped along by their victory on the 2009 UK television show, The Restaurant, with restaurateur Raymond Blanc and Dragon’s Den’s Sarah Willingham. Since then they have opened multiple bars across London and have won a range of prestigious awards from the likes of London Lifestyle, Time Out and Design My Night.
Despite all their commercial achievements, JJ and James insist that their greatest triumph is paying off that loan from Lizzie!
CO-FOUNDER & CREATIVE DIRECTOR
A creative to the core; JJ brands every LCC bar single-handedly to the minutest detail. A well-known entrepreneur and mixologist; JJ has won a series of accolades including the 2008 Cocktail World Cup and the London Club & Bar’s Bartender of the Year. He has judged some of the world’s most acclaimed bartending competitions and continues to present at events such as London’s Ideal Home Show and Imbibe Live.
Originally from Melbourne Australia, James oversees HR and recruitment of LCC’s highly skilled bar teams. As an entrepreneur, bar industry personality and business investor, he pours his love of the industry into the team he recruits. With an academic background in business and international trade, James has been working with JJ from the beginning to grow the company to its current portfolio.
Michelle was appointed in 2015 to oversee LCC’s phase of expansion. She started her career as one of the Managers running the Hacienda nightclub in Manchester, ran night clubs and late bars in London’s West End and worked as Operations Manager for Lewis + Clarke (Imbiba), Operations Director for Kornicis and has had her own business. She loves start-ups and the energy and dynamism of small businesses.
Lance is the Senior Independent Director and Chairman of the Audit Committee for Henderson Global Trust plc. and Chairman of Thompson Dunn Ltd. He has been CFO of companies such as WIN plc., Executive Director of IMImobile and Head of Corporate Finance and Planning for Storehouse plc. He is a fellow of the Association of Corporate Treasurers and a Visiting Professor at Cranfield School of Management from which he has a PhD.
RAYMOND BLANC OBE
Acknowledged as one of the finest chefs in the world, Raymond Blanc owns Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons in Great Milton, Oxfordshire and Brasserie Blanc, a group of 20 French Cuisine brasseries in England. Raymond is a best-selling author and continues to host a number of BBC Two television series. Raymond is the President of the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA), a not-for-profit organisation leading the industry in becoming more sustainable.
A judge on the panel of BBC’s Dragon’s Den, Sarah was formerly a judge and investor on BBC Two’s The Restaurant and Cooks to Market. She is an entrepreneur, investor and consumer expert with expertise in the hospitality industry. She was a director of the Clapham House Group where she developed and sold the Bombay Bicycle Club. Sarah is recognised as one of Britain’s most well known female consumer champions.