Earlier this year, Newport-based dealer, Shine Food Machinery, joined forces with renowned consultant, SHW (Sefton Horn Winch), to outfit the Quod Restaurant & Bar, the renowned brasserie in Oxford’s High Street.
The eatery is housed in the Old Bank Hotel in the heart of the city’s colleges and shopping area.
The project saw the total refurbishment of the main kitchen and the creation of a preparation kitchen in the basement and a satellite service kitchen within the hotel.
Also during the 6 week timeframe, the owner, Jeremy Mogford, refurbished all the front of house, restaurant and bar, and the majority of the luxury bedrooms and rear terrace, favoured by many during the spring and summer months, particularly for the famous afternoon teas.
As the catering equipment supply and installation contractor (appointed after a careful tendering process), Shine worked with SHW’s nominated specialist fabricator, Pioneer, and project managed the package to ensure that the hotel was ready for its relaunch.
This involved several weeks of double shifts, working closely with the local construction company Dighton’s.
Shine bought into the need to be flexible about its working patterns, and organised its teams accordingly, to accommodate the needs of the refurbishment works, much of the time during normal out-of-hours working.
The state-of-the-art kitchen which uses the best fresh produce, and quality meat products sourced from the owner’s farm, has been totally refitted with all new ventilation, mechanical and electrical services, and efficient multi-functional catering equipment.
The design and layout of the kitchen, bar and ancillary areas provide for breakfast, lunch, afternoon teas, dinner, meeting and conference rooms, room service and drinks/cocktails/coffee/teas.
The brief to Derek White of SHW West was to create new kitchens and an extensive bar within the existing restricted building parameters, utilising space wherever possible to ensure an efficient kitchen with minimum staffing levels, and efficient use of energy.
The bar being the focal point of the main restaurant, is said to be ‘the best in town’ with bespoke pattenised copper back fittings and Onyx bar top, which is a concept design by local architect, James Wyman.
By knocking out several internal walls, this provided the space to introduce Rational combi ovens and a Frima pressure bratt pan to the basement preparation kitchen, to enable much of the bulk cooking and preparation to be carried out close to the in-situ coldrooms and dry storage, prior to transportation to the main ground floor kitchen for finishing and service.
An ‘L’ shaped pass with suspended gantry provided 8metres of uninterrupted service and worktop space, with a built-in frying station with dedicated ventilation and fire suppression, whilst the chefs work in the ‘L’ shaped pattern behind, with a modular Bonnet Suite utilising both induction technology and traditional gas ring, with a Synergy chargrill to one end.
This replaced a very ad-hoc assemble of individual units that had been replaced several times over the last 18 years since its last refurbishment in 1998.
With a redesign of the pastry and pizza section/pass, SHW and Shine provided a more ergonomic and flexible use area.
Equipment included a combination Wiesheu pizza, bakery and combi oven, a marble topped prep station and Adande refrigeration.
Working with DPL Kitchen Ventilation, both kitchens were fitted with replacement ventilation canopies using UV filtration to prevent build-up of grease deposits within the ducting rising to the roof level.
In the main kitchen, bar and satellite kitchen, warewashing by Winterhalter with reverse osmosis technology was introduced to improve the finishing of the tableware and negate the need for endless cutlery and glassware polishing.
Quod’s owner, Jeremy Mogford, said that SHW and Shine had ‘worked miracles’ with the space available.
The consultant and dealer emphasised that it really was a great team effort by all design and construction teams.
At the restaurant’s busiest time it can top 1,000 covers per day, so SHW and Shine selected equipment that was not only multi-functional, efficient technology, but robust too, to take the constant 18 hour a day use.