Trencherman’s chefs and restaurateurs reveal what we can do to help restaurants survive post-pandemic
Jude Kereama of Kota in Porthleven, Cornwall
‘We’re very grateful to our customers for their support through this tough year. While we’re closed during lockdown people can support us – and many other restaurants – by buying gift vouchers for loved ones. They could even buy vouchers for themselves in advance of visiting for dinner as it really helps bring money into restaurants while they are closed.’
Mark Hix of The Oyster & Fish House, Lyme Regis, Dorset
‘When the restaurants closed I decided to open my own HIX Oyster & Fish Truck, so I bought an old Chevrolet truck on eBay to start selling fresh fish and seafood outside my favourite farm shop in Morcombelake. I buy direct from the local fishermen so it also supports them during this difficult time when they can’t sell fish to restaurants. Many restaurant groups have had to reinvent the way they reach their guests with food to cook at home. I have just launched my Hix at Home fish boxes, where customers can buy whole fresh fish, delivered to their door anywhere in England or Wales, plus two recipes and an online tutorial with me.’
Jack Stein of Rick and Jill Stein’s Restaurants
‘I really hope everyone who can’t eat at their favourite restaurants will take the time to contact them or look on their website and social media channels to see what they are up to. Like us, many will be offering a takeaway or home delivery boxes – the Stein’s at Home three-course menu boxes have been really popular since we launched in June. It would be great if people support their favourites through the lockdown.’
Guy Owen of Karrek & The Brasserie, St Enodoc Hotel, Rock, Cornwall
‘As an industry, we are all facing a very tough time. It saddens me that we are not able to welcome guests to the restaurants. However, there are ways people can help the industry by purchasing vouchers or supporting businesses offering a takeaway service. A great example is The Barley Sheaf in Gorran where Tim and Terri offer delicious takeaway on Fridays and Saturdays. At the hotel we have vouchers for sale – a perfect gift for family and loved ones as we all need something to look forward to.
‘Not only do restaurants, cafes and hotels need your support: the wonderful people who supply us need it too. Find out if local fishermen are selling their catch at your local fishing port or in a car park of a business near you. It’s so easy to pop to the supermarket but, with a little research, you can support your local economy and buy produce of the highest quality with very low food miles.’
Chris Staines and Silvana Bandini of The Ollerod in Beaminster, Dorset
‘The saying “use it or lose it” is particularly pertinent for hospitality at the moment. A lot of our guests (who are incredible) are ordering from us every week even though they wouldn’t have had dinner here every week; their view is that they want us to still be here after this so they can come and have dinner when they like.
‘Many hospitality businesses are finding ways to ride this out by doing things like takeaways, ready meals, selling produce and creating dining experiences at home. Buying a voucher is great as it helps with cash flow now, but if everyone does that – or pays upfront – then next year is going to be tough as vouchers will be being spent, not cash. If your local restaurant is open in some form then support it, even if it’s just buying something small.’
Or how about using the following ideas to support restaurants?
- Organise a virtual dinner party where you and friends all order from the same restaurant on the same night
- Make a point of visiting as soon as lockdown restrictions lift
- Leave great reviews