Dalton Mello and Greg Rush are hoping that Twelve will eventually become the UK’s first national vegan chain.
“We had the idea while working in very meat-orientated restaurants about three years ago. We’ve spent a lot of time on market research and want to prove that plant-based restaurants can be slick, outside London vegan restaurants often have a bit of a homemade vibe.”
“That’s fine but we want to create something that’s a bit more professional and scalable,” says Mello, whose CV includes restaurant supervisor at Gaucho and - most recently - private dining manager at Caprice Holdings. Rush worked for Hawksmoor before taking a restaurant manager job at Goodman Group's Burger & Lobster.
Twelve is expected to open in The Triangle, an area of Bournemouth that Mello describes as “like Shoreditch 10 years ago”. The restaurant will occupy the ground floor of a townhouse building and trade throughout the day.
Menus are still being finalised but will feature plant based and organic takes on classic world dishes. “Flexitarians, vegetarians and vegans often need to go to a niche restaurant cuisine hoping to find a vegan option. Twelve wants to bring those dishes under one roof. Think spinach and ‘ricotta’ cannelloni with cashew béchamel or tagliatelle carbonara with smoked ‘bacon’. We’re also in the process of creating a vitamin-packed burger,” says Rush.
The drinks offer will include cold pressed juices and high quality coffee.
“Animal welfare, promoting a healthy environment and minimizing waste is the foundation of our brand,” says Mello. “Twelve is a restaurant that just happens to be vegan. We want to take plant-based diet to a different level and help people understand that you can still enjoy pretty much everything in your lifestyle without giving anything up.”