CHR Equipment Ltd delivering profitable solutions to the UK Food Service Industry

Telephone Icon

01772 499774

The Pavilion restaurant, part of the Pavilion Business Members’ Club (formerly Drylands), has five floors of luxury serviced offices and working spaces offering a 24/7 food and beverage offering. Alan Dooley, general manager of what was then Drylands contacted CHR to talk about the proposed new venture and the company worked alongside Adam and the international acclaimed interior design team Design LSM to create a relaxed, non-corporate feeling space, giving guests the chance to eat at the chef’s table and get a real idea as to how the food is put together.

“Guests now sit at the ‘pass’ and can really understand the craft involved in putting the dishes together. They feel as though they are part of the creative process and can chat to the chefs as they work. One client told me he had a far better understanding not only about the food he was eating but also about the effort that goes into preparing it. The diners really love the concept,” says Adam.

The restaurant opened in May 2014 and Adam cannot get over how successful it has been. “Take up has been phenomenal. We had no idea it would take off as quickly as it has and be so popular in such a short space of time.”

The new ground floor restaurant area with its open kitchen uses flush ventilated ceilings and marble, various woods, steel and brass were also used in the design and fit out.

A spectacular central bar serves a collection of classic and signature cocktails, wines, beers and Champagnes. Designed with Marquina marble, brass inlays and a delicately profiled pewter top, the bespoke bar also features a brass wine gantry and dramatic illuminated glass pillars reminiscent of the 1930s. The bar is stocked using small independent suppliers and will offer its own menu throughout the day, ideal for business lunches, pre- and post-dinner drinks or nightcaps.

For Adam, conserving energy is massively important. “Why leave burners on all the time if you don’t have to? It doesn’t make environmental or business sense.

“Cost and environmental issue aside, since we opened we have seen the hottest days of the year and I have really noticed the difference. I hate to think what it would have been like in a traditional kitchen.”

Buying British was also a concern for him. “Smaller suppliers seem to have a better ethos about quality and therefore produce a better product. We actually went to the factory to see our Eco-chef being made where the finish on the cooking equipment is simply faultless.” He admits getting used to cooking with induction was a learning curve: “It took a while to get used to it but once you start cooking with induction it is fantastic. I would never go back to using a traditional range. If you ask me what my favourite piece of kit is in the new kitchens it has to be the Eco-chef.”

A full refurbishment of the basement production kitchens was also needed to cater for the existing business as well as additionally delivering the needs of the new ground floor restaurant serving an additional 60 covers. According to Adam “We badly needed a major revamp because it was a cage, in the nicest possible way of course. Now we can cope easily with the restaurant and with our ‘room service’ to the offices too.”

CHR’s Paul Neville agrees saying: “The hub of this operation is the newly designed basement kitchen, which is a vital ingredient in the whole operation and logistics for the business. There is lots of induction, pressure cooking and high efficiency appliances to help reduce the amount of ventilation required as well as being a key driver to a more sustainable and energy efficient solution to the client.” The new production kitchen, even though it is in the basement, is fitted out more like a front of house kitchen with beautifully tiled walls and with bright and well-lit spaces to improve the working conditions for the chefs, helping them to be comfortable in their creativity.

Adam says: ‘The whole area is light and airy due to the LED lighting despite there being no window. I chose matt white tiles too give the space a better feel. With the use of induction the kitchens are not hot – it is a very nice environment to work in”. The new provisions to the basement also encompass a goods-in area, separate preparation areas for larder, meat, fish and sauces and a bakery area with a three-tier Tom Chandley deck oven and retarding provers. CHR’s hygienic finish involved installing all kitchens with steel plinths to prevent food, fat and grease gaining ingress under the units which also helps with cleaning.

The plinths are additionally fitted with an anti-rodent filling to remove the risks of vermin entering through the drains. The physical installation presented practical problems as Paul Neville explains: “Deliveries had to be scheduled outside normal hours due to parking and crowded footpaths. A small passenger lift also decreed that goods would need to be procured in a way that would allow us to deliver and re-build on site, a bit like Lego sets.

“The Pavilion project is very close to our hearts at CHR,” says Neville. “The initial enquiry came from Adam’s father George who sadly passed away before the scheme was finished but his research into our company was a key factor to the opportunity given to our team.” Adam says: “Going back about three years I remember my dad being very impressed with CHR’s Eco-chef concept. It is my ambition at some point to open my own restaurant and I will definitely have CHR in to fit that out.

“CHR have been extremely attentive and helpful over the design of the kitchen and worked extremely hard to set it up.”