Friday Five: the week's top news

By James McAllister

- Last updated on GMT

Friday Five: the week's top news

Related tags: Hospitality

This week's main hospitality news stories include Noma reclaiming its title as The World’s Best Restaurant, Simon Bonwick's plans to close The Crown, and Brad Carter's new doner kebab brand.

- René Redzepi’s famed Copenhagen restaurant Noma has been named the best in the world at The World's 50 Best Restaurants Awards 2021​, which took place on Tuesday (5 October) in Antwerp, Flanders. Coming just weeks after the restaurant was finally awarded three Michelin stars, the accolade is described by 50 Best as 'a testament to Redzepi and his team’s unerring focus on unusual seasonal ingredients'. Rasmus Kofoed’s fellow Copenhagen restaurant Geranium climbed three places to take the number two spot; while Basque grill master Victor Arguinzoniz's Asador Etxebarri held its third place position from the 2019 list, with Arguinzoniz also receiving the Estrella Damm Chefs’ Choice Award. Just two UK restaurants made the ranking: James Lowe and John Ogier’s Lyle’s, which debuted in the list back in 2018, climbed one place from 34 to 33; while Daniel Willis, Isaac McHale and Johnny Smith's The Clove Club dropped slightly, from 27 to 32.

Simon Bonwick is to close his Michelin-starred The Crown at Burchetts Green at the end of this year​ ahead of the launch of a larger 'more ambitious' restaurant. While full details of the new sites are still under wraps, Bonwick says it will be located within a five mile radius of The Crown within ‘the UK’s most beautiful market town’. Presumably located in Marlow, the new site will be within 'a traditional restaurant premises', marking a change of approach for Bonwick, who has cooked in high-end Berkshire pubs for much of his career. Bonwick says the offer will be even more refined than The Crown, which is currently ranked 68​ on our list of the top 100 places to eat in the UK.

- Carter’s of Moseley chef Brad Carter has helped open the first of what’s hoped to be a string of locations for his franchise spin-off brand One Star Döner Bar​. Located in Manchester’s Escape to Freight Island, a 2,000-capacity urban market close to Manchester Piccadilly, the site offers a tight menu of kebabs made using meat from the same suppliers Carter uses at his Michelin-starred Birmingham restaurant. The One Star Döner Bar concept was born during lockdown when the largely self-taught chef switched from selling recipe boxes to kebabs made using his house-made mortadella.

UKHospitality has launched a campaign calling on the Chancellor Rishi Sunak to make the current 12.5% VAT rate for hospitality permanent​ and thus help bolster the sector's post-Covid recovery. Under its new #VATsEnough campaign, the trade body is urging customers, suppliers, hospitality venues and employees to lobby their MPs on the need to lock in the 12.5% VAT rate for local pubs, bars, restaurants, hotels and other sector businesses. The campaign's launch comes in the wake of the VAT rate for hospitality businesses rising to 12.5% on 1 October from the reduced 5% rate introduced by the Treasury in July 2020 following the first national lockdown. Under current plans, VAT will return to its pre-pandemic level of 20% in April 2022, just as next year’s peak season begins. However, UKHospitality argues that it should remain at the interim level of 12.5% permanently.

- William Reed has announced it is bringing the power of all its market-leading and trusted hospitality brands together to launch The BigHospitality Expo from 26-28 September 2022​. BigHospitality, The Morning Advertiser, MCA Insight, Lumina Intelligence, World’s 50 Best, The Restaurant Show and the company’s suite of event brands and platforms will together launch the show targeting specifically the hospitality industry of today – and the future. The BigHospitality Expo will be the ultimate event for restaurateurs and chefs, casual dining operators as well as pubs and bars. The Restaurant Show, an exhibition also run by William Reed, that for over 30 years has attracted the UK’s best chefs, operators and exhibitors, will continue as part of the new BigHospitality Expo and will deliver even more for the restaurant sector.

Check below for more of this week's headlines, or click here​.

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