EXCLUSIVE: Prezzo looks to clever kitchen design to unlock back-of-house efficiencies


Prezzo’s chef director Paul Lewis believes the volume of competition in the market today means that kitchen design and equipment choice can make all the difference to the efficiency of an operation.

Mr Lewis, who has been with the casual dining brand for 15 years, insists back-of-house innovation is a constant point of internal discussion.

“In the current market with the explosion of eateries across all levels of hospitality and with the slowing of migration workforce, we simply have to look at kitchen design and equipment innovation to help drive speed, efficiency, consistency and quality,” he said.

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“Technology is moving at an incredible pace. In multi-site organisations kitchen innovation is critical in driving marginal gains in the areas I have just mentioned as well as sustainability which we all have a huge part to play.”

Prezzo has refurbished multiple sites since a restructuring its business 18 months ago and the food team that Mr Lewis leads has pulled out all the stops to deliver new menus to entice customers.

A dedication to sourcing the best ingredients, designing the most eye-catching dishes – it was the first to chain to launch a charcoal black base pizza – and gaining customer feedback has become central to its product development ethos.

The biggest focus this year, however, has been the recruitment and development of its back-of-house teams, revealed Mr Lewis.

“The business is investing a huge amount of time and resource into ensuring food quality and service is simply the best. ‘Back to basics’ is a phrase often over used, but one that is so incredibly important and difficult to maintain, unless you constantly re-evaluate what the basics are, and how they are being delivered,” he said.

Prezzo currently operates 185 UK restaurants and made sales of £157m in its last full financial year.

Mr Lewis featured in the 2019 FEJ Power List. You can view the full list HERE.

Tags : Casual diningkitchen designPaul LewisPrezzo
Andrew Seymour

The author Andrew Seymour

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