Amuse-bouches: The latest restaurant news bites

In restaurant news this week: a study finds almost a third of furloughed food service workers are at risk of redundancy, over 1,000 people apply for one restaurant job, and Stevie Parle and Tom Dixon open an outdoor eatery and farm shop.

Hospitality sector shifts in England still down on pre-lockdown levels: Data from Wagestream has revealed that hospitality sector shifts in England are still down 58.3% on pre-Covid levels. Taking the UK as a whole, shifts are down 68.9% with only a 3% weekly improvement rate.

32% of furloughed workers in food services and accommodation sector at risk of redundancy: According to PwC furloughed workers in the hotel and restaurant sector are most at risk of redundancy by the end of Q2 2020. Pwc’s analysis has forecast that the UK labour market could fall by 5% in 2020, which could significantly affect some 9.4 million workers that are furloughed.

Over 1,000 people apply for restaurant job: Over 1,000 people have applied for a job at 20 Stories in Manchester. In just 24 hours operator D&D London said it received 963 CVs, with the Metro confirming that this has now risen to over 1,000.

More landlords consider turnover-based rent model for restaurants: Capco, the owner of London’s Covent Garden, has introduced an income-based rent relief scheme for restaurants and bars on its site. This follows news that the Crown Estate, which owns large parts of London’s West End, has also introduced a similar model.

Shaftesbury reveals plans to pedestrianise Seven Dials from 3 August: Property firm Shaftesbury has revealed plans to temporarily close roads in Seven Dials from the beginning of August to support the hospitality and retail sectors in the area. Roads will shut from 10am to 6pm seven days a week.

Bubbledogs co-founder to launch online Champagne shop: Sandia Chang, co-founder of Champagne and hot-dog concept Bubbledogs, is set to launch an online food and wine shop. Called Bubbleshop, the platform will sell a range of grower Champagne alongside hotdog kits.

Casa do Frango to add another floor to restaurant: Piri piri chicken specialist Casa do Frango is to expand into the downstairs site previously occupied by Native in London Bridge. The eatery, which previously was just based on the top floor of the building, will now boast a further 40 covers. Native has announced that it will be reopening, but it is presumed it will be moving.


Joy: Chef Stevie Parle and designer Tom Dixon have teamed up to open an outdoor restaurant, with a farm and bottle shop section. Based in London’s Portobello Docks, the site will open on 31 July and will feature Flora, Parle’s outdoor restaurant; The Goods Shed farm shop; a bee-friendly garden planted with 1,000 dahlias destined for compost after the cancellation of Hampton Court Flower show; a honey shop; and a bottle shop with wine and beer supplied by Uncharted Wines and BierCraft.


Wilks: Michelin-starred restaurant Wilks in Bristol has announced that it will not be reopening, Bristol Live reports. The restaurant was opened in 2012 by husband and wife team James and Christine Wilkins. The couple had put the business up for sale towards the end of last year, but had thought it would take a couple of years to sell.

River Cottage Kitchen, Winchester: Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s River Cottage Kitchen group has closed its site in Winchester, citing “unprecedented challenges from Covid-19” as the reason behind the decision. The restaurant group previously shut its Bristol site in February.


Vinoteca virtual wine tasting: Wine-focused restaurant group Vinoteca is to host an ‘online wine workout’ on 13 August to raise funds for City Harvest. The tasting will feature Vinoteca’s own label wine Rodney & The Horse, with owners Brett Woonton and Charlie Young talking guests through two wines, a Riesling and a Shiraz from the Clare Valley. Priced at £42.50, the package includes one bottle of each wine, plus a snack, and is available nationwide. Click here for more information.

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