IFSE adds theatre to garden centre restaurant

IFSE designed and outfitted Garsons’ octagonal restaurant and kitchen.

International Food Service Equipment (IFSE) has completed a kitchen and restaurant design and install at Garsons Garden Centre in Esher.

The 450 cover venue is housed in an octagonal glass atrium built on a steel frame and forms part of a £4.3m investment in Garsons’ retail areas.

Croydon-based IFSE was brought into the project after the original design had been drawn up: “Space planning in a scheme like this is paramount,” said the distributor’s project manager, Anne Peacock.

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“Our redesign provided an additional 30 seats for Garsons, giving them very significant potential for extra revenue.”

The kitchen pass is open so that customers can see the chefs in action. “Garsons wanted to underline the connection to the kitchen,” added Peacock.

“The open pass also adds to the theatre of the customer experience plus, of course, they get great confidence from being able to see what’s happening in the kitchen.”

She describes the kitchen as “a chef’s dream”, and detailed: “Both the kitchen and the servery area are set up for expansion.

“For example, there are services in the kitchen for an extra three combi steamers and a pot washer, and in the servery area for an extra multideck food display counter.”

Segregated prep areas for raw meat, cooked meat and vegetables are featured, back of house. “One of Garsons’ signature dishes is triple-cooked chips, so there’s also a dedicated spud peeling and chipping area,” Peacock said.

The kitchen has prime cooking equipment and refrigeration from Electrolux as well as three Rational combi steamers.

Winterhalter warewashers were also fitted, including a reverse osmosis water treatment unit.

Ben Thompson, director at Garsons, reported: “The restaurant was full on its first weekend. In the first week we traded over £30,000.

“IFSE played an integral role in developing the project – especially in terms of pushing to expand covers and ensure future-proofing. Having a single point of contact in Anne Peacock was a real advantage in a project of this size.”

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