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Morning Briefing for pub, restaurant and food wervice operators

Mon 16th May 2022 - Propel Monday News Briefing

Story of the Day:

Lipscombe – not a week goes by without another supplier putting their prices up: James Lipscombe, chief executive of The Chesterford Group (TCG), which operates circa 40 sites under brands including Churchill’s and Bankers Fish & Chips, has said not a week goes by without it being contacted by another supplier putting prices up. Lipscombe said that since last year, fish prices have gone up 50%, cooking oil 70%, packaging 30% and beef 36%. Against this, VAT is back to 20%, there have been increases in both National Insurance and the National Minimum Wage. He said: “There are so many other price increases, and there seems to be no end in sight. Not a week goes by when we seem to be contacted by another supplier putting their prices up. All this on the back of a cost-of-living crisis, all government support falling away and an increase in National Minimum Wage and National Insurance. We have no other choice but to put prices up in our fish and chip shops to offset these increases, but where does it all end? There is going to be an estimated 4,000 fish and chip shops closing this year alone, it’s tough for people in our sector and across hospitality right now. The hospitality sector is short of 400,000 workers, which is making finding great people really tough. I was speaking to one of my fantastic managers today who felt demoralised about trying to find team members to work in his shop. It broke my heart, to be honest. It’s tough being a business owner right now, and to all of you who are out there, fighting every single day to look after your people and run your businesses, I have nothing but the utmost respect for what you do – keep smiling and be there for your teams.” 

Industry News:

Sponsored message – Rick Stein backs Hospitality Rising, invest today: Chef and restaurateur Rick Stein is backing Hospitality Rising, but will you? The initiative aims to unite the industry by asking it to invest in and back its plan to change the perception of hospitality for the better, in the biggest sector recruitment advertising campaign the UK has seen. Stein said: “The hospitality industry means everything to me. I have fond memories of the larder section at The Great Western Hotel in Paddington, mainly because the others working there were so good at what they did and taught me so much, and I used to love going to the Pride of Paddington for a pint or two with them after work. Fast forward more than 50 years, three-quarters of our management team having grown their careers with us and many more having gone on to open their own businesses, winning accolades in the process. It's clear hospitality has many great opportunities for career starters, future leaders and entrepreneurs. Finding these great people, however, is proving more and more of a challenge for our sector. Having the opportunity to collectively address this is now possible owing to the great work of Hospitality Rising. Join us to ensure Hospitality Rising's £1m target can be achieved to enable our great industry to inspire a new generation of hospitality recruits.” Invest in Hospitality Rising now from just £10 per employee here. If you have a sponsored story you would like to see featured in this newsletter position, email
Host of coffee shop concepts among those added to second UK Food and Beverage Franchisor Database, released on Friday: A host of coffee shop concepts expanding in the UK and abroad are among the 20 new franchisors featured in the second UK Food and Beverage Franchisor Database, which will be sent to Premium subscribers on Friday (20 May). The second edition will feature 120 companies and almost 47,000 words of content, providing insight on the offer, locations, cost and other key details. Among them is Coventry-based mobile van business Really Awesome Coffee, which is looking to grow its expanding franchise business. Also featured is Triple Two Coffee, which has circa 20 sites in the UK and is has ambitions to open 100 stores here and abroad over the next three years. Jamaica Blue, which operates more than 120 cafes worldwide and opened its 11th UK site in December 2021, is also featured. So too is Coffee Republic, which is growing its estate in the UK and abroad once more after being bought out of administration in 2009. In addition, mobile coffee van franchise Cafe2U, which has more than 250 franchisees worldwide and 85 operating in the UK, will be featured. Premium subscribers also receive access to The New Openings Database, the Propel Multi-Site Database and the Turnover & Profits Blue Book. Companies can now have an unlimited number of people receive access to Propel Premium for a year for £895 plus VAT – whether they are an operator or a supplier. The single subscription rate is £445 plus VAT for operators and £545 plus VAT for suppliers. Email to upgrade your subscription. Subscribers also receive access to Propel’s library of lockdown videos and Friday Wrap interviews and now also have access to a curated video library of the sector’s finest leaders and entrepreneurs, offering their insights on running outstanding businesses in the sector. Premium subscribers also receive their morning newsletter 11 hours early, at 7pm the evening before our 6am send-out; regular video content and regular exclusive columns from Propel group editor Mark Wingett. 
Boris Johnson scraps plans to curb junk food: A ban on “buy one get one free” deals on unhealthy snacks and a 9pm watershed for junk food advertising have both been ditched as Boris Johnson aims to cut the cost of living and boost growth. The Times reports the prime minister has delayed the policies for at least a year and may axe them completely as he aims to focus on creating jobs and scrapping “un-Conservative” ideas. The u-turn was immediately condemned by health campaigners as failing children but was welcomed by Tory MPs. In 2020, Johnson set out plans to limit the promotion of foods high in sugar, salt and fat and to impose an advertising watershed on such products, insisting it would protect children and save the NHS billions. However, he has for months been under pressure from cabinet ministers and backbenchers to drop the plans, with a majority of Tory MPs signalled their opposition in February. Johnson has also agreed to a year’s delay to the advertising ban, which was due to come into effect in January. He is said to have been convinced by ministers who argued that, given the stuttering performance of the economy, now was the wrong time to pile costs on the broadcasting and food industries. Kate Nicholls, chief executive of UKHospitality, said: “We have been arguing for some time that now is not the time to impose additional costs on food biz. Calorie labelling should go too! The thing that many people don’t realise about the proposals is that they would not have just affected junk foods – it was any food high in salt, fat and sugar, and so captures lots of everyday ordinary foods. The whole interventionist strategy needs a rethink.”

McDonald's storm over antibiotics in beef: McDonald's is under fire for its reliance on antibiotics used in beef farming that critics warn is contributing to a public health crisis. The burger giant vowed four years ago to publish plans to reduce its use of the drugs amid fears that the practice is putting millions of lives at risk. However, campaigners say the company has still not honoured its promises. The Mail on Sunday reports an unlikely alliance of investors, led by Trinity College Cambridge and legendary corporate raider Carl Icahn – the inspiration for Gordon Gekko in the film Wall Street – are preparing to challenge the firm at its annual meeting later this month. McDonald's is one of the world's biggest buyers of beef, and its influence on the use of antibiotics in intensive farming worldwide is substantial. It says it is committed to an 'overall reduction' in the use of the drugs. There is growing evidence that the excessive consumption of antibiotics is fuelling the rise of drug-resistant superbugs. Trinity College holds shares in the company via its £1.9bn endowment fund. It has tabled a motion to force McDonald's to disclose the environmental and public health costs of its continued use of antibiotics in its meat production. The proposal says antimicrobial resistance (AMR) “poses a systemic, global threat to public health and the economy”. Two-thirds of antibiotics used worldwide are fed to farm animals.

Company News:

Vapiano sees sales at UK sites up almost 5% on pre-pandemic levels, set to open new central London restaurant: Vapiano, which was acquired last year by the Mario C Bauer-led consortium Love & Food Restaurant Holdings, is seeing sales across its six UK sites almost 5% up on 2019 levels, Propel has learned. The brand said the revenue boost has been particularly around antipasti, with sales up 31% on pre-pandemic levels, as digital ordering continues to lead guest experience in its restaurants. Vapiano is also set to open its seventh UK site, in a “central London” location, later this year. Craig Goslin, UK managing director of Vapiano, told Propel: “Footfall is up across the entire UK business. We have seen the performance of our six UK sites exceed 2019 achievement by almost 5%. Our guest profile is predominantly Generation Z and, unsurprisingly, they have been the biggest adopters of our new digital guest journey, continuing to use their smartphones to order their favourite pasta and personalise their dishes exactly as they like it. Historically, our guest journey meant the emphasis was on our pasta and pizza, but we have now seen a considerable jump in antipasti and drinks orders. Our loyal community of young pasta enthusiasts has allowed us, at the current time, to maintain our pricing in 2022, even when we’re all currently facing increased energy, food and business/living costs. As we look to introduce our seventh UK restaurant later this year in London, we will continue to work with all of our suppliers and stakeholders to ensure our pricing for our guests remains competitive as inflation hits a 30-year high.” Vapiano UK operates four restaurants in London and one each in Edinburgh and Manchester.
Where The Pancakes Are looking to open 16 sites by 2026, launches £550,000 crowdfund to aid expansion plans: Where The Pancakes Are, the buttermilk pancakes and cafe concept, is aiming to open 16 restaurants by 2026 and has launched a £550,000 fundraise to aid its expansion plans. Founded by Patricia Trijbits in 2015, inspired by the pancake restaurants in her native Holland and across the USA, Where The Pancakes Are began life as a series of pop-ups and cooking classes. This was followed by the opening of restaurants in Flat Iron Square in 2016 and Fitzrovia in 2021, with a third, in Battersea Power Station, set to open this autumn. As well as launching her second site during the pandemic, Trijbits also introduced an online shop selling her signature pancake mix, brunch boxes and gift boxes. The crowdfunding campaign, launched via Crowdcube, is offering investors 15.87% equity, with rewards including at-home pancake boxes, free pancakes on Shrove Tuesday or year-round discounts. The company has a pre-money valuation of £2.9m and a share price of £2.34. The fundraise has so far raised £371,000. The company said it serves 10,000 customers a month and has served some 300,000 since launching, with a 62% return rate within three months. Trijbits said: “Our pancakes are so well loved by our customers, we are excited to continue our expansion across the UK to bring our pancakes to as many people as possible – I like to think of it as spreading the pancake love! We have cemented our business model with a casual dining experience and all-day menu. We are now ready to fast-track our growth to open more locations that hit the uniquely broad customer appeal of pancakes, attracting local residents, office workers, as well as tourists and day-trippers.”
Clean Kitchen Club secures Soho site, plans Series A fundraising round: Clean Kitchen Club – which was founded by former YouTube celebrity Michael Pearce, with Made in Chelsea TV star Verity Bowditch joining in 2020 – is planning to launch a Series A fundraising round by the end of this year as it adds a Soho site to its openings pipeline, Propel has learned. Earlier this year, the business launched a fundraising round, with the target of raising £2m. Propel understands it is close to hitting that target after securing 80% of the funds within three weeks of launching the raise. Last November, Bowditch and Pearce closed a £1.4m seed-funding round for the business, announcing plans to open 40 locations across the UK. On the latest fundraising, Pearce previously said he and Bowditch have signed the “lead investment for our next round – £500,000 at £12m valuation from our first raise”. He said the new fundraising campaign would allow the business to open more sites and “increase our retail range while continuing to innovate by investing in our research and development centre and strong marketing campaigns”. Propel understands that one of those openings, will be in Old Compton Street, Soho. Propel reported last week that the business is set to increase its presence in London, with openings in Notting Hill and Fulham. The business, which will also launch a 2,441 square-foot flagship restaurant at Battersea Power Station later this year, will open its fifth site next month, at 172 Portobello Road, after securing a new lease on a 1,000 square-foot unit. Meanwhile, Propel understands Clean Kitchen Club has secured the ex-Cote site in Jerdan Place, Fulham Broadway, for an opening later this summer. The site will be the group’s biggest project to date, at 3,000 square feet, and will feature an 80-cover outdoor terrace. Backers of the business include Clive Sharpe, ex-chairman of Quorn, and Grace Beverley, fitness influencer and chief executive of health and fitness app Shreddy and sustainable activewear brand Tala. Sharpe is understood to have taken the chair role at Clean. Etai Page at Stonebrook London acted on the Fulham and Notting Hill deals. 

Turtle Bay secures two new sites, with four more in the pipeline: Turtle Bay, the Caribbean restaurant brand backed by Piper, has secured two new sites and plans to open a further four by the end of its financial year, Propel has learned. The 44-strong group is understood to have secured the ex-Real China site in Salford Quays, which is due to open in August. The second, in Brindleyplace, Birmingham, is scheduled to open in early autumn. This will be the second site for the brand in Birmingham after its one in John Bright Street. Of the four further sites it is planning, Propel understands that the company is in talks on two openings in London. Earlier this year, Propel revealed that Turtle Bay had appointed advisors as it seeks a new investment partner to help drive its further growth ambitions. The business, which Piper has backed since 2013, appointed Rothschild & Co to oversee the process, which should attract both trade and private equity players. Speaking to Propel earlier this year, chief executive Nick Crossley said he saw the potential to more than double the size of the brand. He said: “One of the company’s strengths is that it has not been afraid to open in what many would see as unconventional locations. I think our value proposition does translate throughout the UK.” On the new sites, Crossley said: “We’re delighted to be opening these two new sites in Salford Quays and Birmingham. After a strong start to the year, our growth plan continues apace, and we intend to open another four sites at a variety of locations over the coming months. We very much look forward to bringing Turtle Bay to even more guests across the UK.”

RedCat acquires two award-winning, home counties-based pubs: RedCat Pub Company, the investment vehicle from ex-Greene King chief executive Rooney Anand, has acquired the freeholds of two award-winning, Home Counties-based pubs. Propel understands that the company has secured the Nag’s Head in Great Missenden, Buckinghamshire, and The Bricklayer’s Arms, near Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, for an undisclosed sum. The former is a Silver AA 4-Star graded traditional 15th century country pub and hotel in the Chilterns, while the latter is a 18th century country pub which has been owned by the Michaels family for more than 17 years. Last month, RedCat acquired four sites from Anglia Restaurants – the Wherry Hotel and Pub in Suffolk, the Castle Carvery restaurants at the Racecourse and Clocktower in Norwich, and the Castle Freehouse in Caister-on-sea. It is understood RedCat, which currently operates more than 100 sites across the country, intends to continue with the Castle Carvery brand at the sites. Everard Cole acted on the Nags Head and Bricklayer’s Arms deals.

Chipotle promotes Jim Slater to chief international officer, eyes West Hampstead site: US brand Chipotle has promoted Jim Slater from managing director of its European operations, including overseeing its growth in the UK, to the new role of chief international officer, Propel has learned. Slater joined Chipotle five and a half years ago from Costa Coffee, where he was managing director UK & Ireland for just over two years. At the same time, the company, which currently operates ten restaurants in London, plus two dark kitchen units, has applied to open a site in West Hampstead. It is hoping to open in the former Barclay's site at the corner of West End Lane and Fawley Road, which would include a new take-away hatch. However, the application, which is due to be decided on by the local council this month, has received several objections from local residents. Earlier this year, the brand was linked with planning to make its regional debut in the UK, in Watford. The company had applied to open in a vacant site in 60 High Street, in the Hertfordshire town. It follows 12 months in which the brand returned to the expansion trail in the UK, opening three restaurants in London, and a second dark kitchen unit. 

Malkov – recruitment remains biggest challenge, pipeline ‘very healthy’: Yishay Malkov, chief executive of Various Eateries, the Coppa Club-operator, has said recruitment remains the biggest challenge for the 15-strong, listed business. He told Propel: “Our vacancy rate is relatively low, but the amount of energy and resources we need to spend on it is much higher than it used to be.” Last week, the business reported total revenue was £17.9m in the 26-period ending 3 April 2022, up 439% year-on-year (H1 FY2021: £3.3m), driven by new site openings and reflecting fewer restricted periods of trading. Looking ahead, the group said it is set to continue with its roll out of venues, while taking careful consideration of macro-economic and political developments. In terms of where trade is coming from, Malkov told Propel: “It is relatively stable for our businesses at the moment. Haven’t seen much of a shift in how our guests use us aside from a slight increased use in the shoulder times between services.” In terms of the group’s openings’ pipeline, Malkov said it was “very healthy”. He said: “We have quite a few in the mix, mostly outside of the M25. There’s definitely more availability, but prices around London are still too high, so we’re being very selective at present. Now the moratorium has ended, we will see more property becoming available (especially retail) in the next three to six months, so we might ramp up again.” As previously revealed by Propel, Coppa Club Bath is due to open in late summer, and Malkov said that another premium new venue was close to exchange. Propel has previously flagged up that sites in Guildford (where the company has applied to open in the ex-Gap site in the High Street), Farnham and Windsor, are on the group’s radar.

Popeyes secures prominent Nottingham site: Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, the US fried chicken quick-service brand, has further added to its UK openings pipeline by securing a prominent site in Nottingham. The company, which last week revealed its debut UK site, at Westfield Stratford, was the company’s highest-taking restaurant globally out of circa 3,600 sites worldwide, is set to make its debut in the Midlands after securing a prominent corner site which used to house a Burger King, opposite the Victoria Centre in Nottingham. The business recently confirmed it will open its third UK restaurant in Romford and was in the process of lining up its first drive-thru site here. The company, which will open in Chelmsford next month, has also applied, or is in talks, to open in Clapham, the Metrocentre in Gateshead, Oxford’s Queen Street, Reading’s Broad Street and the former Gap unit in Cambridge’s Market Hill. Popeyes UK has also launched additional delivery kitchens with Deliveroo Editions in Battersea, Whitechapel and recently Maida Vale. Another delivery kitchen is due to open in Bermondsey next month. Based on Deliveroo’s customer order data, Popeyes has been the most popular new restaurant launch on the platform this year.

Nightcap appoints Alun Armstrong Adventure Bar Group marketing director: Nightcap, the owner of The Cocktail Club and the Barrio Familia group of bars, has appointed Alun Armstrong, formerly of Stonegate Group, as the new marketing director of its the Adventure Bar Group business, Propel has learned. Armstrong joins Adventure Bar Group, which operates the Blame Gloria and Tonight Josephine concepts, after 13 at Stonegate, including two different director of marketing roles. Armstrong said: “I’m so excited to start my new role working with the Adventure Bar Group team as they embark on an exciting period of national roll-out for their amazing brands and concepts.” Last week, Propel revealed that Nightcap had appointed Rebecca Rose as its new group people director and that the business had applied to open a The Cocktail Club site in the ex-Stockdales of Yorkshire premises in South Parade, Leeds. At the same time, Nightcap said it continued its growth trajectory during the third quarter of its 2022 financial year, which included strong growth in the Barrio Familia business that it acquired last November. It reiterated it currently has a further 23 sites in legal negotiations or under offer across all of its brands, including its most recently acquired Barrio brand. The company said it expects for several new site leases to be entered into before the end of June.

Big Mamma Group to make German debut next month: Big Mamma Group, the operator behind London-based restaurants Gloria, Ave Mario and Circolo Popolare, will open its first site in Germany next month. The company will open its first trattoria in Germany, named Giorgia, in the heart of Munich-Haidhausen, on Rosenheimer Platz on 3 June. The company, which recently opened a debut bricks-and-mortar site for its pizza delivery concept, Napoli Gang, in Ladbroke Grove, is planning to open a fourth site in the capital, in Kensington. The company is planning a site with around 180 covers in the former HSBC bank site on Kensington High Street. The company is “investing considerably” in turning the former bank into “a restaurant of the highest quality”. Propel reported earlier this month that the business is planning a “liquidity event” this summer as it plans further growth across Europe. Speaking at the Restaurant Marketer & Innovator European Summit at the start of the year, Jack de Wet, chief development officer at Big Mamma Group, said the company was set to go through a “a restructuring cycle in the summer/liquidity event”, and the business is looking to grow by ten restaurants a year over the next five years. The business currently operates 19 restaurants across London, France and Spain.

Crepe Delicious secures UK debut site: Pheby Food Concepts Group, which is behind the Wok&Go and Dough Dough brands, has secured the debut UK site for the Crepe Delicious concept, Propel has learned. In September 2020, the business signed a master development deal to launch the concept in the UK, with plans to open 28 sites under the brand here by 2025. Propel understands that Pheby has secured the first regional franchisee for the concept, in London, who has subsequently signed on their first site, which will open on the former Regency Fine Foods site in Leather Lane. Crepe Delicious currently has more than 60 locations globally, with the move into the UK becoming the ninth country outside of the US and Canada where the brand will have a presence. 
Bowland Inns & Hotels secures £26m loan to refinance debt and support future acquisitions: Lancashire-based hotel, pub and restaurant operator Bowland Inns & Hotels has secured a £26m loan from Barclays to refinance its debt and support future growth and acquisitions. Its eight-strong portfolio features hotels, wedding venues, gastropubs and restaurants including Holmes Mill, which is home to the group’s Bowland Brewery, Beer Hall and Food Hall, in addition to a 39-bedroom hotel and Everyman cinema. Although its most recent accounts, for the year to November 2021, have not yet been filed, the company said its turnover for the 12 months to November 2022 is expected to exceed £23m. Its latest available results, for the 12 months to November 2020, include a turnover of £19m and a pre-tax loss of more than £10m. James Warburton, managing director of James’ Places, the trading name of Bowland Inns & Hotels, said: “We are delighted to begin a new banking relationship with Barclays. We have been talking about the move for a number of years, and we can now look ahead to building a bigger and better business. We have solid foundations and a great operations team, and we now have a great banking partner.” Rob Morland, Barclays relationship director, added: “The strength of the senior management team means James’ Places has emerged stronger from recent challenges faced by the whole industry, and I look forward to a long and successful partnership, helping to bring their future growth plans to fruition.”
Parkdean Resorts reports spike in May half-term bookings: Parkdean Resorts, the UK’s largest holiday park operator, is preparing for a bumper May half-term after a spike of bookings in the last few weeks. Since the start of April, bookings at Parkdean’s 66 parks have surged 204%, while there has been a 216% increase in searches. It comes hot on the heels of a bumper Easter for Parkdean – the first Easter in three years that parks had been allowed to open. Parkdean has also experienced record feedback scores in the first quarter across Facebook (4.4 out of five), Google and Reevoo (4.3 out of five), and TripAdvisor (4.1 out of five). Steve Richards, chief executive of Parkdean, said: “Bookings for May half-term have gone through the roof after the brilliant Easter we had. Families are having a fantastic time at our parks and keep coming back for more, which is not just great news for us, but also for the local economies we’re part of, as it means more people spending their money in local shops, attractions, pubs and restaurants.” Earlier this year, the company announced its biggest ever investment programme, spending £140m on its parks to further improve the guest experience, including 850 new caravans and lodges, new and upgraded activities and facilities, and park-wide Wi-Fi capability.
Westbourne Leisure acquires Solihull hotel from Corus: West Midlands-based pub, restaurant and hotel operator Westbourne Leisure has bought a Solihull hotel. The company has acquired The Regency Hotel from Corus Hotels, which now operates four sites. The hotel, based on the A34 Stratford Road, has 111 bedrooms, bar, lounge, restaurant, seven meeting rooms and a leisure club. Khurram Mohmad, chief executive at Corus Hotels, said: “We are pleased to have come to a deal with Westbourne Leisure. We are grateful and very proud of The Regency Hotel team for all its support during this time and for their hard work and dedication over the last few years.” Westbourne Leisure was established in the 1970s, when Pat and Mary Owens bought their first pub. JLL acted on the Solihull deal.
Kent couple take on second Shepherd Neame pub, transform it into boutique hotel and bar: Husband-and-wife team Andrew and Natalie Hennessy have taken on a second Shepherd Neame pub in Kent and transformed it into boutique hotel and bar. The couple, who also operate The East Kent in Whitstable, have reopened The White Horse in Boughton-under-Blean, near Faversham, following an eight-month refurbishment. The 15th century village pub has been turned into a premium cocktail bar and restaurant, offering 13 guest rooms, a treatment room and reception area. Natalie, a trained chef who will oversee the kitchen offering, has strong family ties to the area as her great grandfather used to run two pubs in the village, and her aunt once worked at The White Horse. She said: “When I was a teenager, I said to my mum and dad I will have a pub, and I achieved that with The East Kent, but I always wanted something with rooms. There was also such a connection to this place, this was always meant to be. When I visited the pub as it was before, I could see it in my mind just as it is now. But being eight months pregnant at the time, I couldn’t get on with it as quickly as I wanted to!” Natalie will serve a menu inspired by her classic French training and extensive travels, along with light bites and Kentish cream teas, while guests and visitors can book into The Nest treatment room when it opens this summer. Shepherd Neame’s director of tenanted pub operations, Greg Wallis, added: “We are delighted with the finished results of this major project to transform The White Horse and take it in an exciting new direction. Natalie and Andrew have done an amazing job at The East Kent, and we are confident they will go from strength to strength with this new venture.”
Rishim Sachdeva to launch £150,000 crowdfunding campaign to open permanent London restaurant for ‘mostly vegan’ concept: Vegan chef Rishim Sachdeva will launch a first round of equity crowdfunding ahead of permanent London restaurant site plans for his “mostly vegan” concept, Tendril. The move comes after a residency for Tendril at Soho’s Sun & 13 Cantons – a starting ground for notable restaurant success stories, such as Sambal Shiok, Sarap and Asma Khan’s Darjeeling Express. The crowdfunding campaign on Seedrs will launch at the end of this month, with a target of £150,000. Tendril’s menu focuses on fresh, seasonal produce, and takes inspiration from Sachdeva’s kitchen experience in London and India, as well as the food he likes to eat at home – having been a (mostly) vegan himself since early 2019. Signature dishes on Tendril’s menu include Tostada, with muhamarra, winter squash and chard kimchi, and Chipotle mushroom, barbecue kale, walnut, crispy potato and gremolata. Sachdeva said: “Tendril is the result of a deeply personal journey for me, from being a hardcore carnivore to a (mostly) vegan convert. I still eat some dairy and would find it almost impossible to give up cheese altogether, hence the (mostly) vegan menu at Tendril. By cooking plant-first food that’s not specific to a cuisine or nationality, I want to recreate my most evocative memories of flavours and textures that have influenced me through my travels around the world, not just the UK and India. We were blown away by the success at the Sun & 13 Cantons and I’m now hoping with this crowdfunding that I can finally realise the dream of opening a permanent restaurant home for us in London.”
North Yorkshire garage and events space to launch motor-themed restaurant: North Yorkshire garage and events space, The Motorist, is launching a motor-themed restaurant. The Arnage will open on Thursday (19 May) at the venue in the village of Sherburn in Elmet. The Arnage will mark the latest development for The Motorist, with the menu showcasing the “best local produce the region has to offer” from head chef, Ian Matfin. Having worked in numerous high-profile establishments including Claridge’s, Gordon Ramsay Restaurants, Abode in Manchester and Raymond Blanc’s Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons, Matfin has created a menu of contemporary British food and drink, with a nod to the racing world. Dishes will include steak and ale pie as well as battered fresh east coast haddock and moules frites. The space will include 78 covers in the downstairs restaurant, 100 covers in its corporate upstairs lounge, Club Le Mans, and an additional 24 covers split across three different private dining rooms. The Motorist, which was founded by Simon Spinks, is already home to a themed cafe, garage and showroom and regularly hosts events that can see up to 900 people.
Wendy’s set to open seventh UK site, in Ilford: Wendy’s, the third-largest quick service restaurant chain in the US, is set to open its seventh UK site on Tuesday (17 May). The latest opening for the chain, which returned to the UK last summer following a 21-year hiatus, will be in Ilford High Street, Essex – adding to its sites in Reading, Romford, Oxford, Brighton, Stratford and Croydon. Wendy’s plans to open at least ten UK restaurants this year – with sites in Camden, Guildford, Maidstone, Kingston, Colchester, Peterborough and Uxbridge being lined up – as well as up to 50 dark kitchens. Earlier this month, Gunther Plosch, chief financial officer at Wendy’s, said several franchises had been signed up for the UK market, and there had been “huge interest” by franchisees in its European expansions plans.

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