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Mon 8th Oct 2018 - Propel Monday News Briefing

Story of the Day:

Restaurant Marketer & Innovator Awards open for entries: The Restaurant Marketer & Innovator Awards has been launched. The awards, in their second year, recognise outstanding marketing and innovation in the sector. Finalists will be invited to an awards ceremony, which will be held at Cafe de Paris in London on Thursday, 17 January, which is the grand finale of the Restaurant Marketer & Innovator European Summit, which takes place over two days. Awards are open to any eating or drinking out brand or outlet in Europe. There are 13 categories – Integrated Campaign of the Year, Digital Campaign of the Year, Innovation of the Year, Launch Campaign of the Year, Best Use of Technology, Best New Website, Best Use of Video, Best New/Improved Visual Identity, Best Use of Social Media, Best Use of Research/Insight/Data, Marketer of the Year, Innovator of the Year and Future Marketing Leader of the Year. Propel managing director Paul Charity said: "We launched this event last year and had 850 people, coming from across Europe, attend over the various segments. The awards recognise the very best within the spheres of foodservice marketing and innovation." Awards co-founder James Hacon added: “We're back after a stellar inaugural awards in 2018 that attracted more than 90 entries. We set out creating the awards to recognise the growing importance of marketing, innovation and strategy professions within the restaurant and foodservice sector. We saw a superb calibre last year and have amazing momentum with our events throughout the year. We're expecting an even more impressive list of entrants this year." Entries are now open. The closing date is 11.59pm on Monday, 5 November. Entry information and criteria an be found here.

Industry News:

Hospitality workers happy to recommend career in industry but sector has ‘long way to go’ on mental health and well-being: More than three quarters (78%) of hospitality workers would recommend a career in the industry despite its challenges and obstacles, new research has revealed. However, the inaugural CODE Hospitality Happiness In Hospitality report showed the industry still has a long way to go when it comes to mental health and well-being, with nine out of ten staff having experienced or witnessed abuse in the workplace. The report touches on the more emotional sides of working in the sector, focusing on workforce talent, mental health and well-being, and remuneration and benefits. It revealed almost two-fifths (38%) of people working in hospitality left an employer to obtain greater personal development, with 56% finding their new roles through their own network – highlighting the importance of employers having an official and effective in-house recruitment referral scheme. The report also highlighted the need for a more official mentorship programme to be in place across the industry, with 85% wanting to be mentored and 87% wanting to mentor. In terms of remuneration and benefits, the over-riding feedback across all job levels was a requirement for more flexible working hours – with a nod towards employees with families and those entering the industry as a second career. The report also reveals hospitality professionals don’t leave an employer for a pay increase – only 7% cited this as their main reason to find a new job compared with 51% of the UK workforce generally. CODE Hospitality founder Adam Hyman said: “As an industry we need to unite and collectively implement improvements to the workplace to attract new talent and retain those already working in it. People work in restaurants, bars and hotels for more than a pay cheque – they do it from a more deep-rooted passion.” Max Coltart, head of CODE Careers, added: “The UK has every element required to set the global standard for hospitality, yet we lag behind the rest of the world in our treatment of people. Only when our industry is seen as a viable career, let alone a sustainable one, will we flourish further.” For more details or to purchase a copy of the report, which will be published annually, email max@codehospitality.co.uk

Pret A Manger confirms second allergy death: A second customer died from an allergic reaction to a product bought from Pret A Manger, the company has confirmed. The individual died in 2017 after eating a "super-veg rainbow flatbread", which was supposed to be dairy-free. The company said it was “mis-sold a guaranteed dairy-free yoghurt”, which contained dairy protein, which was used in the flatbread. The case follows the inquest into the death of Natasha Ednan-Laperouse, 15, who went into cardiac arrest after eating a Pret baguette in 2016. The second customer died on December 27 last year after buying the sandwich from a store in Stall Street, Bath. Pret said the yoghurt in the product was supplied by Coyo, a coconut milk brand that is stocked in shops and supermarkets across the UK. The company said it withdrew all affected products as soon as it was made aware of the incident by Bath and North East Somerset Council. A spokesman said subsequent testing by Pret and two independent authorities found the Coyo dairy-free yoghurt contained traces of dairy protein. Pret then ended its relationship with Coyo and is in the process of taking legal action, he added.

UK hotel industry ‘helped’ by Britain’s approach to Brexit: The UK hotel industry has been “helped” by Britain’s approach to Brexit, new research has suggested. The findings by the Good Hotel Guide 2019 showed trading for most hotels has been good (69%) or fair (28%), with only 3% saying it had been poor. More than half (60%) said they had seen an increase in foreign guests. Occupancy rates have increased, with 12% recording exceptionally high rates (above 90%) and half recording rates above 75% – helped by a decline in the value of sterling and this year’s good weather. Fewer than one-quarter (21%) said occupancy rates were worse than last year. However, Brexit is by no means all good news – a third of hotels said Brexit had affected staff recruitment and retention. The research was released as the guide revealed its ten César awards, which are presented to hotels that have demonstrated excellence in their field. Named after César Ritz, they are known as the “Oscars of the hotel industry”. Among the winners was multi-site operator Andrew Pern’s The Star Inn in Harome, North Yorkshire, which was named inn of the year. The village inn on the edge of the North Yorkshire Moors, which retained its Michelin star in the 2019 awards last week, offers a “fine-dining upgrade on pub classics with a daily-changing menu”, according to the guide. Meanwhile the Pentonbridge Inn in Penton, Cumbria, was named newcomer of the year. It has been transformed from a “remote, run-down pub” with nine bedrooms into an “exciting gourmet destination” offering an “exquisite” seasonal menu. Co-edited by Adam Raphael and Ian Belcher, the ‎2019 edition features a record 860 properties.  
  
KAM Media to launch Licensee Index: KAM Media is launching an annual Licensee Index, working alongside a number of pub companies and family brewers to evolve the industry’s annual survey of its licensees. This independently audited tenant feedback will be a tool for gathering and evaluating absolute and comparative performance of the different pub companies and operators across the sector. As part of the industry’s ongoing commitment to developing the survey, KAM Media said the index would deliver “valuable, high-quality insight and benchmarking”, enabling participating companies to objectively evaluate their own results and, where necessary, inform and improve their business partnerships with tenants. KAM Media managing director Katy Moses said: “We are delighted to be working with the country’s biggest pub companies and family brewers to provide robust and independent data on their performance. Our survey findings will enable our clients to evaluate their performance and ensure their offer to their tenants remains competitive.”
 
Proposed increases in music tariffs will have ‘significant impact’ on sector: UKHospitality has warned proposed increases on recorded music tariffs under consultation would have a “significant impact” on the hospitality sector. The trade body has submitted a response to Phonographic Performance Limited’s (PPL’s) consultation on proposed changes to the Specially Featured Entertainment tariff applicable to pubs, bars, nightclubs and hotels. Proposed increases in the fee itself could see PPL bills increase more than 470% for many venues. UKHospitality chief executive Kate Nicholls said: “Under some of the proposed changes, venues could expect to shoulder a three-figure percentage increase on the basic per-person fee level at a minimum. Additionally, PPL is also proposing a change in structure that is based on a venue’s capacity rather than actual attendance. This means pubs, bars or nightclubs could be charged for a full venue even if they are more than half empty, which could raise costs even higher. Significant fee increases will be crippling for many businesses. The proposed change in fee structure would not just hit large nightclubs and bars, it would also spell trouble for pubs that want to host a weekly disco or other businesses wishing to play specially featured music. We have been liaising with PPL and raising our concerns, and we are hopeful we can continue to work with it to avoid a significant cost increase for the sector.”
 

Company News:

Pachamama Group to launch third London site, in Shoreditch next month: Restaurant operator Pachamama Group is to launch its third London site, in Shoreditch next month. Pachamama East will open in Great Eastern Street on Thursday, 1 November offering a different experience to Peruvian-style sister sites Chicama and Pachamama. The new venue will focus on fresh seasonal produce and “applying the bold flavours, aromas, textures and spices that make Asian food so tasty”. The 85-cover site will be split over two floors, with the main restaurant featuring plants, pastels, reclaimed wood, exposed concrete walls and an open kitchen providing views of chefs cooking over a coal fire. A staircase will lead to a 16-cover private dining room on the lower ground floor, which will also host a series of chef collaborations. The group’s new executive creative chef Mikkel Gregersen, formerly of Dinner by Heston Blumenthal and AOC in Copenhagen, has placed an emphasis on sharing at Pachamama East, with dishes such as grilled hispi cabbage and smoked aubergine, whole jiang-glazed chicken, and ceviche. The snacks menu will include Sichuan fried chicken and pork belly chicharron. Brunch will include Peruvian waffles with a choice of toppings. The main, sunken bar will offer pisco-focused drinks and bubble tea cocktails alongside beer, wine and spirits. Pachamama Group opened modern-Peruvian restaurant Pachamama Bar + Kitchen in Marylebone in 2014, launching Chicama Bar + Kitchen in Chelsea two years later.
 
Gino D’Acampo launches Italian fast casual brand: Chef Gino D’Acampo has launched Italian fast casual dining offer My Coffee & Deli Bar. The venue is based on the lower ground floor of his My Pizza & Prosecco Bar in Manchester, which is located in fashion retailer Next. Similar to the coffee shops found in D’Acampo’s home city of Naples, My Coffee & Deli Bar offers Neapolitan coffee and Italian food to eat in or take away. My Coffee & Deli Bar serves Italian flatbread, croissants, cakes and muffins made in-house by pastry chefs and bakers at D’Acampo’s own bakery. Healthy options include superfood yogurt, homemade porridge topped with berries, honey or nuts, and fresh fruit. The lunch menu features hand-stretched Neapolitan pizza, homemade pasta and classic sandwiches. Traditional desserts such as tiramisu are on the menu, alongside vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free dishes. D’Acampo said: “Lifestyles have changed with more and more of us eating on the move and looking for a quick and varied offer. I don’t believe convenience should compromise on quality nor come at a premium price.” The move follows the success of the chef’s restaurants in Harrogate, Hull, Leeds, Liverpool, London and Manchester, with further venues launching in partnership with Individual Restaurants in 2018 and a strong pipeline in place for 2019.
 
Tapas Revolution to open seventh site, in Windsor this month: Tapas Revolution, led by chef Omar Allibhoy and managing director Mac Plumpton, will open a site in Windsor, Berkshire, this month. The company will launch the venue – its seventh in total – in Thames Street on Tuesday, 16 October. Allibhoy told the Maidenhead Advertiser: “I come from the Old Castile, a historic region of Spain, so have always felt at home in Windsor and visited many times since moving to England 13 years ago. Tapas Revolution is based on the lively and bustling tapas bars in Madrid, Barcelona and Seville and I’m excited to bring my version to Windsor.” Tapas Revolution opened its first restaurant at Westfield London in 2011. Its other venues are in Bath, Birmingham, Bluewater, Newcastle and Sheffield. Earlier this year it sold the lease of its Shoreditch outlet to Burmese restaurant concept Lahpet.
 
Gail's Bakery begins trial of waste bread: Gail's Artisan Bakery has begun a trial to sell sourdough made up of waste bread. The first 100 loaves of “waste bread” went on sale in ten selected branches of Gail’s Bakery on Thursday (4 October) – and will be rolled out across the rest of its 43-strong estate in London and the south east. Roughly one-third of each baked 750g loaf consists of leftover bread and the chain calculates the 100 loaves being baked daily will save about 10kg of bread being wasted per day. “We’re calling it Waste Bread, which some people think might sound a bit odd but we think this is being honest and clear with our customers,” said Roy Levy, Gail’s head baker and head of development. “It’s reusing leftover but edible bread from our own supply chain, which means we know exactly what is in it and where it has come from.” The original idea was development baker Roz Bado’s, following a discussion with her flatmate about food waste and how edible bread could be reused in a new product. “It’s taken me about nine months to perfect this recipe, with lots of trials, and I do think of it as my baby,” she said. “The beauty is because every day’s leftovers are different, every loaf has its own slightly different taste.”
 
Jolly Good Pubs acquires Adnams site in Ipswich for third venue: Jolly Good Pubs, led by Tom West and Josie Merrick, has acquired the freehold of The Lord Nelson Inn in Ipswich from Suffolk-based brewer and retailer Adnams. The couple’s other sites are both in Essex – The Red Lion in Manningtree and The Marlborough Head in Dedham. The couple have introduced a regular pub quiz and a Sunday roast to all their pubs and have rapidly increased their workforce from ten to 50. West told the East Anglia Daily Times: “We are passionate about pubs and ensuring they stay open and alive. They are such an important part of the community, whether in a large city or small village. Our customers are at the heart of what we do – many of them have already become firm friends and we look forward to meeting many more along the way. We are also lucky to have amazing staff, who share our views on pubs and work with us to create the traditional pub atmosphere.”
 
Nando’s lodges plans to convert historic London library: Nando’s has lodged plans to convert a library in east London in which one of Britain’s biggest trade unions was formed into its latest restaurant. The company wants to transform the ground floor of Canning Town library. The grade II-listed library and neighbouring public hall were completed in 1894. After a speech there in 1889 trade unionist Will Thorne formed the National Union of Gasworkers and General Labourers – now known as the GMB – and helped organise the London Dock Strike of the same year. The library closed last year and services moved to a nearby community centre. Labour-run Newham Council received enquiries from several bar and restaurant companies to take on the space, according to a planning report. Council officers noted it was costing £2,000 per week to “maintain the security of the building”, while Nando’s was identified as the “preferred occupier”. Nando’s applied to remove a spiral staircase in the building but dropped the plans after complaints from Historic England. A spokesman told the Evening Standard: “We know the library building means a lot to the community – that’s why we plan to keep as much of the building’s original features and character as we can.” Nando’s has more than 90 restaurants in London.
 
East Coast Concepts to open third Victor’s site next month, in Alderley Edge: East Coast Concepts will open the third site for its all-day concept Victor’s, in Alderley Edge, Cheshire, next month. The company will open the £1.2m, 2,450 square foot restaurant having previously secured the site in London Road that was occupied by Palatine Private Equity-backed The Alchemist, which has shifted its focus to acquire bar and restaurant sites in “metropolitan locations”. Victor’s Alderley will offer 130 covers across two floors. The venue will be East Coast Concepts’ sixth in total, following the opening of restaurant Neighbourhood in Leeds and a Victor’s in Oxford in the past year. A further two sites are in the pipeline for 2019, while the Victor’s site in Hale will be refurbished. Founder and chief executive James Hitchen told Insider Media: “East Coast Concepts has achieved significant growth over the past few years and we’re keen to build on this with further sites in suburban areas of the UK. The Alderley Edge opening is a perfect case in point and shows our ambition to scale the business. We have the right management team in place to roll out the Victor’s and Neighbourhood brands on a national scale and we hope to add even more locations in the near future.” East Coast Concepts was backed by private equity firm NorthEdge Capital in June 2016.
 
Durham-based operator opens speakeasy-style restaurant for third site: Durham-based operator Nigel Gadd has opened a speakeasy-style restaurant for his third site in the city. Gadd has launched The Rabbit Hole off Marvin Street having invested £1m to buy and renovate a building that formerly housed Spanish restaurant El Coto. The Rabbit Hole is only accessible via a “secret” side door in an alley. Guests enter a 1920s Shanghai-inspired supper club with a warren of bars, hidden passages and doorways. Alongside cocktails, the food menu features seafood, oriental classics and appetisers. Gadd told Chronicle Live: “Our niche restaurant has a duel personality – the menu is part Chinese and part grill. It is classic cuisine meant for sharing that has been delighting diners for decades.” House rules include keeping mobile phones on silent, while there is a strict dress code. Gadd also owns Asian restaurant Zen and the Forty Winks Hotel in Durham.
 
Adil Group submits plans for Taco Bell drive-thru alongside expanded KFC in Northampton: The Adil Group, which operates more than 120 KFC, Burger King and Costa Coffee sites across the UK, has lodged plans for a Taco Bell drive-thru in Northampton. The company wants to open the venue in Walter Tull Way next to its KFC outlet, which it also wants to expand. The application, submitted to Northampton Borough Council, shows planned expansion of the KFC site to 56 seats, with the 68-cover Taco Bell drive-thru sitting alongside, reports the Northampton Chronicle & Echo. In a statement alongside the application, The Adil Group said parking spaces would be lost and the existing drive-thru design at KFC would have to be revised. It stated: “The KFC drive-thru order speaker, pay window and pick-up window would remain in their current location but a new drive-thru lane configuration would be provided for the KFC alongside a new drive-thru lane and associated facilities for the Taco Bell unit.”
 
Vittoria Group to open £3m Edinburgh fish and chip restaurant in December: Edinburgh-based restaurant company Vittoria Group is to open a £3m restaurant in the city in December specialising in fish and chips. The 11,000 square foot restaurant in Victoria Street will be called Bertie’s Restaurant & Bar and seat 300 diners. The venue, which will open on Monday, 3 December, will feature a variety of coastal inspirations inside such as rope, anchors and oars. The new venture for the company, which is led by Tony Crolla, adds to a portfolio that includes Vittoria On The Walk, Vittoria On The Bridge, Taste Of Italy, La Favorita and fine-dining restaurant Divino Enoteca. Crolla told Scottish Field: “We are excited to bring an authentic restaurant experience inspired by ‘proper fish and chips’ to Edinburgh. Bertie’s will not compromise on quality – everything we buy and serve will be of the highest quality. Bertie’s will be a proud new addition to our growing business in Scotland’s capital.” The restaurant will be in the three-floor World Heritage building, a former church that housed a bookmaker, market and Indian restaurant before a blaze in 2008.
 
Macellaio RC makes Fitzrovia home for fifth London site: Italian steak brand Macellaio RC has opened its fifth London site, in Fitzrovia. Founder Roberto Costa has opened the 1,447 square foot site with 581 square foot forecourt in Store Street after signing a 15-year lease with landlord The Bedford Estates. The venue was formerly the Duke of Bedford’s petrol station. Costa said: “I fell in love with this venue and the area at first sight. For me it’s an honour to be able to raise the curtain of our theatre in such a historical venue. As Italian artisans, we love the history behind this incredible building, one of the biggest petrol stations in the 1920s, and we want to show it respect so it gives us the right motivation to do our very best.” Simon Elmer, steward of the London estate at The Bedford Estates, added: “This part of London is renowned for its rich history, elegant period buildings and attractive garden squares. Additions such as Macellaio RC ensure we enhance the area as a place to live in, work in and visit.” Costa opened the first Macellaio RC in South Kensington in 2012, followed by Exmouth Market, Union Street and Clapham. In May this year, it launched a site in Milan.
 
Liverpool-based Turkish barbecue restaurant Anar lodges plans for third site: Liverpool-based Turkish barbecue restaurant Anar has lodged plans for its third site in the city. Owner Kemal Aslan has applied to the council to revamp The Old Roan pub, which closed in August 2013 and has been empty since. Aslan is planning a 166-seater restaurant, reports the Liverpool Echo. The design will be similar to Anar’s other sites, in Prescot Road and Aigburth. A statement accompanying the application stated: “The building is substantial. It is in desperate need of repairs and renovation, which we are willing to undertake.”
 
Air-tastic opens fourth site, three more in the pipeline: Ireland-based trampoline park operator Air-tastic has opened its fourth site – with three more in the pipeline. The company has opened the venue at Marlborough Retail Park in Craigavon and has venues “coming soon” in Dublin, Galway and Limerick, according to its website. Air-tastic is one of three tenants to open in the 80,000 square foot former B&Q site, which has been redeveloped as part of a £7m investment, alongside Marks & Spencer and sportswear brand O’Neills. A further phase of work is under way that will see the addition of Starbucks and Burger King. Air-tastic area manager Sharyn Ingrey told the Irish News: “We are excited to bring Air-tastic to Craigavon. Our trampoline park is a destination for the entire family.” CBRE and Cushman & Wakefield acted on behalf of the landlord on the leasing of the scheme. Air-tastic’s other sites are in Bangor, Belfast and Cork.
 
Sicilian supper club to open debut restaurant, in Stoke Newington next month: The chef behind Hackney-based Sicilian supper club Southbound is to open a debut restaurant in Stoke Newington, north east London, next month. Cérès is the brainchild of Camille Tardieu, who creates dishes inspired by her Sicilian and Provencal grandmothers. After raising additional funds on crowdfunding platform Kickstarter, Tardieu will open her restaurant in Green Lanes offering a seasonally changing menu with dishes such as oxtail bourguignon in a dim sum bun with pearl onions, crispy pancetta and salty plum jam, and monkfish with golden beetroot, clams and tarragon beurre blanc. Cérès will also offer a “brioche brunch” on Saturdays, which will centre on homemade baked bread and artisan French pastries, Hot Dinners reports. Sunday lunch will also have a Mediterranean influence, with slow-cooked meat and whole fish dishes designed for sharing, alongside homemade pasta.
 
Roosters Piri Piri lodges Brentwood plans: Roosters Piri Piri has lodged plans for a site in Brentwood, Essex, as it continues to expand its estate in the south of England. The company has applied to Brentwood Borough Council to open the venue in High Street on the site of Chelo Grill And Bar, reports Essex Live. Roosters Piri Piri, founded by Khalid Mirza in 2003, serves halal fried chicken and specialises in “healthy street food from around the world”. It currently has 36 outlets.
 
Blacklock opens Shoreditch site for third London venue: Skinny chops concept Blacklock has opened its third London site, in Shoreditch. The restaurant has launched in a former Victorian warehouse in Rivington Street offering signature chops, steaks, sides and Sunday roast. A larger, separate bar offers a cocktail list curated in partnership with New York speakeasy bar Slowly Shirley. Former Hawksmoor executive Gordon Ker opened the first Blacklock in Soho in 2015, with a second, larger site launching in the City of London last year. Ker said: “We have wanted to focus on a bar with food that goes well after a few drinks but have never had the space. With Shoreditch it felt like the right time. It’s always important to us to add something special to the area so it’s great to be collaborating with the guys at Slowly Shirley, who have some of the best international mixologists out there to bring something new to Blacklock and Shoreditch.”
 
Belfast-based James Street South Group shelves city centre restaurant plans: Belfast-based James Street South Group, run by chef entrepreneur Niall McKenna, has shelved plans for a new venue in the city centre after the property was put up for sale. The former home of Tedfords Ship Chandlers, Sail & Tentmakers in Donegal Quay was set to be the latest eatery from the group, which owns James St, Hadksis and Cast & Crew. McKenna submitted a planning application in 2015 proposing to convert the three-storey former sail warehouse into a restaurant, with approval granted in January last year. However, the listed building is now on the market with a guide price of £300,000, reports the Irish News. Earlier this year, McKenna announced plans to merge his James Street South restaurant and its neighbour, James Street bar and grill, as part of a new £300,000 redevelopment project. The new James St restaurant opened last month, creating 35 jobs.
 
Creams coming to Cheltenham this month: Dessert parlour operator Creams Cafe is to launch a site in Cheltenham. The 100-cover venue will open in the Brewery Quarter at a unit next to Five Guys in time for October half-term. Creams serves waffles, milkshakes, freakshakes and 36 varieties of Italian gelato-style ice cream. It also offers a wide range of sundaes, including the hot chocolate fudge volcano, and crepes such as the Belgian banana burrito. Creams Cafe was founded in 2008 and operates more than 75 sites in the UK, with another 30 branches set to open by April next year. Creams head of franchise and business development Anwar Uddin told Cheltenham Live: “We feel the Brewery Quarter is the perfect place for our new Creams restaurant. There was a gap in the market in Cheltenham with no-one offering what we do, the experience of really enjoying a dessert. Creams is unique, people come for a social gathering where they can treat themselves. Work is progressing nicely to get the restaurant ready and we hope to be open by October half-term.”
 
Bistrot Pierre opens 24th site, in Coventry: Bistrot Pierre, which is backed by private equity firm Livingbridge, has opened its 24th site, in Coventry. The restaurant has launched on the first floor of the new Cathedral Lanes leisure development. The city centre venue features a terrace overlooking Broadgate Square, a bar and space for about 140 covers. Bistrot Pierre regional manager Simon Barnes told Coventry Live: “We were really excited when we knew we were finally coming to Coventry. It joins a good range of bars and restaurants already there. The Coventry site brings so many of our traditional values but also has its own flavour, including the terrace.” The company’s other West Midlands sites are in Birmingham, Kidderminster, Leamington Spa, Mere Green and Stratford-upon-Avon.
 
Julian Dunkerton opens new headquarters for organic cider brand in Cheltenham, plans artisan food hall: Julian Dunkerton, the entrepreneur behind high-street brand Superdry, has opened new headquarters for Dunkertons Organic Cider, in Cheltenham. He has also revealed plans to turn an old warehouse on the site in London Road into an artisan food hall featuring produce from across the UK. Dunkerton told Punchline: “I will have invested another £10m-plus by the time I am finished. We plan to develop a centre for organic and artisan food from around the country – the very best we can find. It will be the only one of its kind in the country.” Last month, Dunkerton acquired The Crown Inn in Minchinhampton, near Stroud, as a sixth site for his The Lucky Onion group. The 300-year-old pub has been shut for the past six years. The Lucky Onion operates pubs, restaurants and boutique hotels “raised and rooted in the Cotswolds”. The company’s other sites are boutique hotels No. 131 and No. 38 The Park, coaching inn The Wheatsheaf, neighbourhood bar restaurant The Tavern, and pub restaurant The Wild Duck.
 
The Headstart Group to open Hessle restaurant next month: The Headstart Group will open its new site in Hessle, East Yorkshire, next month. Cucina 1884 will offer a “mix of classic and contemporary Italian cuisine”. It will open on the corner of Ferriby Road in the former HU13 Kitchen premises, specialising in small plates of pasta and wood-fired pizza using authentic ingredients imported from Italy. Director Jane Cook told the Hull Daily Mail: “Hessle needs something like this and there has been a lot of interest – more than I thought there would be. The menus are finished and are very different from the norm. It’s not Anglicised Italian food.” The Headstart Group also operates 1884 Wine & Tapas Bar and 1884 Marina in Hull.

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