A multimillion pound investment in new pub kitchens and chef skills appears to be paying dividends for Star Pubs & Bars following a significant improvement in customer satisfaction ratings for its food.
An independent retail audit, carried out on behalf of the pub group, found that the overall score for properties in the Star portfolio have risen 10% in its pubs in the last three years.
The biggest improvement was in the quality of food and food service, with scores rising 20% from 65% to 84%.
Star has funnelled more than £4m into kitchen refits over the past two years with £1.6m of investments made in 2017 so far. It has also launched initiatives to support pubs that have previously had a limited food offering and provide training for chefs and kitchen workers.
The strategy has helped increase the number of Star pubs offering food to 70%, the highest percentage of any national leased operator.
Paul Daly, retail marketing manager, said: “The results demonstrate significant improvements across the Star estate in the quality of food served and the service provided, which is particularly impressive given that 74% of Star pubs sell food.
Figures from the report show that the gap between the highest and lowest scoring pubs has now narrowed to its lowest level ever.
Daly added: “The objective feedback from mystery visitors, ongoing training and the investment provided by Star all contribute to raising standards and helping licensees build sustainable businesses.”