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The Asian Catering Federation (ACF) and NOQU takeaway ordering platform developer, are partnering to allow restaurants take control of their brand identity, whilst boosting online ordering.
NOQU allows restaurants to implement cost-effective online ordering, whilst retaining a strong brand identity. NOQU will educate takeaway outlets on customer relationships building and driving online on a series of roadshows, as ACF encourages its 1,500 members to adopt the platforms.
“A handful of big players dominate online ordering in the takeaway market – but they don’t always represent the best commercial benefits for our members,” said Yawar Khan, chairman, Asian Catering Federation, adding: “Using the system, restaurants are able to collect their own data, run promotions and marketing as they like. It’s more competitive – charging only 5% commission on orders, compared to an industry average of 12%.”
Rob McMillian, CEO, NOQU commented: “We live in a digital world … today’s consumers increasingly want to browse menus and order online when purchasing food to takeaway. Consumers also order up to 25% more online than when in a restaurant."
As part of the long-term partnership, NOQU has become a lead sponsor of ACF’s Asian Curry Awards.
Business Growth Fund (BGF) has acquired a “significant minority stake” in Giggling Squid restaurants for a £6.4m investment.
Giggling Squid, which has a portfolio of 13 properties, will use BGF capital to finance further expansion, with many more sites opening within the M25. BGF has introduced Simon Kossoff, Chairman and former CEO of Carluccio’s, who becomes Giggling Squid’s as non-exec Chairman alongside Jon Simon, Investor at BGF, also joins the board.
The business employs around 300 staff across its thirteen sites and is expected to generate revenue in excess of £12m this year. A further 1,000 jobs nationally are expected to be created over the next 4 years.
“Ultimately, we remain a food led business and Simon Kossoff’s appointment as chairman is a real coup for us,” said Pranee, adding, “We have massive respect for his achievements at Carluccio’s, a brand we see as having played a central role in redefining the quality customers now expect from high street restaurants.
The announcement came on the same day that Giggling Squid's Bristol branch collected the accolade for'Best Thai' at the Asian Curry Awards held at the London Hilton.
The Harvester in Rochester Road, Gravesend was cleared after a rat was seen scuttling around the floor of the restaurant on Saturday 7th November.
Customer Richard Montgomery, was having dinner with his family and photographed the rodent escaped through a hole in a wall.
“We were just sitting there having a family meal and just before the main came out we heard someone scream, ‘Rat!’, he said “This massive rat ran across the floor and into the wall through a big hole in the pillar.”
The manager evacuated the building and the restaurant was closed, without charging customers for their meals.
A spokesman for the restaurant, which has a five-star food hygiene rating, said: “We apologise for this incident. Our pest control contractors completed a full investigation and clean immediately.”
Pork & Co in Canterbury has coming under fire from vegan protesters for displaying meat which looks like an an animal in its shop window.
Co owned by butcher and pig farmer Sam Deeson and his wife, local artist Cath, Pork & Co, specialises in pulled pork rolls. It has been targeted by vegan activists for displaying whole head-on roast pigs, with the body section shredded in pulled pork style.
Cath Deeson said she has suffered death and injury threats aimed at Sam and repeated robberies.
It has also been claimed wrongly that the takeaway uses (highly expensive) young suckling pigs in its rolls, the Deesons insist they only use mature, free range pigs.
The takeaway and couple have received negative comments on social media, being called “psychopaths” by Facebook user Robert Smith. Denise Bottall said Sam Deeson was “evil”, and that she should “let me at him with a pair of scissors.” Janet Tomsen called the practice “disgusting and murder”.
Violet Gibbs, posted that having a “charred animal ripped open in the window…[is] absolutely disgusting”, and that it was fine for people to eat meat, but that “such an upsetting sight” should “expect” to provoke backlash.
Food militants also posted fake one star (poor) ratings slating Pork & Co.
However, the hate campaign backfired, with supportive customers flocking to buy its now famous pork rolls with scores of meat-loving new ones attracted by the publicity, causing long queues to form.
Veggie Mum Wins Chicken Dish Award09-11-2015
Brighton’s Indian Summer restaurant has had its Mamaji's Chicken named as one of the top three dishes in the Best In Britain Awards (BiBA) for Best Traditional Signature Dish 2015.
Also cited are Cardiff-based Makosh restaurant’s Lamb Railway Curry and the Rabbit Stew of Cinnamon Culture in Bromley.
Indian Summer is known for is mix of modern contemporary dishes and authentic regional cuisine based on family recipes, passed down through the generations.
The award-winning Mamaji’s Chicken dish is prepared following a recipe from the mother of Indian Summer’s co owner Minesh Agnihotri. ‘Mamaji’ is Punjabi for ‘mother’.
“Growing up, mum’s chicken, made with cashews, tomatoes, onions, fennel seeds, red chillies, asafoetida, garlic, turmeric and coriander, was a particular childhood favourite of mine,” said Minesh, “I’ve taught people how to prepare it in over private 100 homes at the cooking lessons I give – they all love it.”
Surprisingly, Manesh’s mother, Jyostna Agnihotri, is a strict vegetarian and will not even handle meat.
“When we were younger, mum always got my brother and me to clean the meat, whilst she prepared the spices. It’s a hearty dish – using traditional cooking techniques. She never tasted it but it was always fantastic. That’s how I leant to cook.”
Indian Summer is also named in BiBA’s Top 50 Indian restaurants in the country, for the second year running.
A recent fund raising lunch hosted by Indian Summer during National Curry Week, raised £700 for the Curry Tree Project and the Find Your Feet charity.
Indian Summer has also been named as a finalist in this year’s Asian Curry Awards. The winners will be announced at a glittering awards ceremony at the London Hilton on Sunday 15th November.
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