Garners Food Service Equipment knew it had a unique job on its hands recently when it was asked to oversee the kitchen renovation of Alchemilla in Nottingham, contained in what was a disused coach house.
The remarkable refurbishment transformed what was a dark and dingy venue into a spacious restaurant offering contemporary British cuisine, all the while holding on to the Victorian brickwork.
The distributor’s account manager for this project, Paul Joslin, detailed what the local firm faced: “All of the challenges to this project were based around the actual building. We had to take a coach house that has not been used for close to 100 years, with curved vaulted ceilings, walls and floors that are nowhere near straight or level, and turn it into a functional and aesthetically-pleasing kitchen whilst changing very little of the original character and charm of the building.
“Also a lot of the new section of the back of house was dug out of the ground and the structure, while the design and layout of the building sometimes changed due to what was found on a weekly basis.”
As the principal kitchen contractor, Garners recommended Induced Energy for the job thanks to the unique technology offers the distributor feels this offers, ticking all the boxes of the client’s spec.
Other major suppliers for the project included Rational, Williams Refrigeration, Meiko, Hatco, Hoshizaki and Mechline. According to Joslin: “All of the manufacturers were chosen due to the equipment’s functionality for the restaurant offer and menu. The appliances are fit for purpose and reliable. We also took into consideration the lifetime cost and the manufacturer’s warranty support and service levels, allowing the best possible service to the customer for maintenance throughout the equipment life.”
The overall restaurant build was carried out from March to August this year, although the catering side of the fit out had just a 2 week window for installation. Joslin detailed: “This was even due to be completed well before the building. This was to enable head chef, proprietor and project manager Alex Bond and his team to develop their menu and train all of the staff over the weekends and evenings, so that he could meet the planned dry run/opening schedule. Everything was completed, right first time, on schedule and on budget.”
He continued: “The installation, although always developing up until the first installation day, went really well and as expected due to planning, co-ordination with the client and all of the other trades.
“I’ve worked within this industry for over 20 years and what has been created and delivered and is now open is a beautiful, different and functional restaurant, which has kept the original character and charm of the building that we started with. Garners is very proud to have been able to support and continue a great relationship with yet another new client.”
Induced Energy’s sales director Nic Banner was very involved in the project and praised the outfit: “The team at Induced Energy were delighted to work alongside Garners Foodservice Equipment on the development of the Alchemilla restaurant. It’s a fantastic restaurant and we are really pleased to have provided its chef and kitchen staff with quality, durable induction equipment which has been expertly manufactured with the user in mind.
“Staff at Alchemilla can take advantage of the wide scope of temperatures which have been built into Induced Energy’s product arrange, allowing them be flexible with their cooking methods without compromising on energy efficiency.”
Now being tipped for a Michelin star, the restaurant is open and proving successful for head chef Bond. He enthused: “We wanted everything spot on which meant things changed a lot during the project – I think we changed the design for the ducting about three times – and Garners would just roll with it because they want to have something to be proud of as well; it was the same with Nic from Induced Energy.
“We wanted people who are as excited by this kitchen as we are, and to do that we needed guys like Paul and Nic”.