Friday Five: the week's top news stories

By BigHospitality

- Last updated on GMT

Top hospitality news stories

Related tags: Chris Denney, Jose Pizarro, Where The Light Gets In, Henry Dimbleby

This week’s key hospitality news stories include former 108 Garage chef Chris Denney ‘s return to Notting Hill and the second part of the Government’s National Food Strategy report.

Former 108 Garage chef Chris Denney is to return to Notting Hill later this month​ with a new restaurant and bar called Fiend in the space that was once home to well-regarded Mexican restaurant Santo. With a CV that includes time with John Campbell, Eric Chavot and Aaron Paterson in the UK and the three-star Piazza Duomo in Italy, Denny attracted rave reviews for his cooking at 108 Garage, which closed unexpectedly in 2019. Billed as a multi-faceted restaurant and bar, the Portobello Road will see Denny ‘flex his culinary muscle and taking up the mantle as the next great disruptive force in British food’.

- José Pizarro is to open two restaurants at the Royal Academy of Arts in London’s Piccadilly next month.​ Billed as the Spanish chef’s ‘first foray into central London’, the two locations have been created in collaboration with the Royal Academy of Arts Company of Cooks, the art institution’s long-standing catering partner. On the ground floor will be the Poster Bar by José, an informal, walk-in tapas bar with a vibe akin to Pizarro’s eponymous flagship restaurant on Bermondsey Street. Upstairs, meanwhile, in the Dorfman Senate Room will be José Pizarro at the RA, a seated restaurant with a ‘grander’ menu. 

- The Government is reportedly considering plans to introduce so-called ‘vaccine passports’​ for hospitality in the autumn, despite a recent review concluding there should be no legal requirements for their use. According to The Times, Covid-status certificates would be required for customers to enter bars, restaurants and nightclubs in England under plans to tackle an anticipated fourth wave of the virus. Customers would have to prove they have had either had both doses of the vaccine, or a negative test the day before. Experts hope the move will boost jab rates among the young.

- Where The Light Gets In chef Sam Buckley is to launch a bakery, deli, pottery and evening pizza and wine bar​ in Stockport old town late next month. Occupying the ground floor of 15 Lower Hillgate, Yellowhammer is a collaboration between Buckley, baker Rosie Wilkes and potter Joe Hartley. Alongside a wide selection of bread, a range of sweet and savoury buns will be baked daily, as well as breakfast sandwiches, lunch sandwiches and a changing selection of cookies, pies and tarts. A pizza and natural wine night will take place on select Friday and Saturday evenings. The bakery will supply the bread for Where The Light Gets In, and will share ‘the same commitment to supporting small, local producers and using whole ingredients’.

- Henry Dimbleby has called for the introduction of a Sugar and Salt Reformulation Tax​ to help the country break free from what he describes as a vicious ‘Junk Food Cycle’. In the second part of the Leon co-founder’s National Food Strategy the Leon co-founder describes the food system we have as being ‘both a miracle and a disaster’. He warns that ‘the food we eat – and the way we produce it – is doing terrible damage to our planet and to our health’. The report states that the UK population’s ‘malfunctioning’ appetites and poor diets – fuelled by consumer and manufacturer’s reliance on processed food – place an unsustainable burden on the NHS, contribute to 64,000 deaths each year in England alone, and costs the economy £74bn.

Related topics: Trends & Reports

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