Punch Taverns has been the subject of one of the more complex transactions in the pub industry of late, with Patron Capital completing a takeover of the group’s 3,200 sites and Heineken agreeing to take on 1,900 of those units in a £305m deal.
While the men in suits have been thrashing out the terms around the boardroom table, the company’s operations experts have been hard at work on the shop floor to ensure it’s business as usual for customers.
That includes Chris Webb, who has been carrying out plenty of work on the role of food in pubs and examining which equipment best matches its needs today.
“It’s about not over-specifying — it’s the easiest thing in the world to fill an empty kitchen with lots of shiny equipment but you have to pare it right back and ask, what piece of kit can I use across many parts of the menu?” he said at Commercial Kitchen this year.
The biggest challenges are space and speed of service, which Punch has overcome by ensuring the serving gantry contains everything a chef on the pass needs to hand.
“We have ones with heated drawers and a pasta boiler, so one person can stand there and not move all service. That’s proving pretty popular for us at the moment and we’ll probably look at rolling that out,” says Chris.
Company: Punch Taverns
Address: Jubilee House, Second Avenue, Burton upon Trent, Staffordshire, DE14 2WF
Tel: 01283 501999
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