Garden Retail Awards 2009: Best Catering Facilities

WINNER: Langlands Garden Centre

Langlands has one objective when it comes to catering - to serve the very best Yorkshire has to offer, without any compromise.

It is easy to talk about the decor of the catering outlet, the relaxed, friendly ambience or innovations such as the online table reservations system for special events such as Mother's Day.

But the garden centre says the main reason why its catering offering is special is its uniqueness in providing 100 per cent locally produced ingredients, cooked from scratch in its kitchens.

Langlands pays tribute to its staff, who "don't cut corners by opening a jar when fresh and local is better".

Langlands' core values are to buy local produce whenever possible, always buy the highest quality, never buy anything they can make themselves, only sell baked goods the day they are made and to establish long-term relationships with all of its suppliers.

Core values that look good on paper but are hard to live by every day, Langlands insists.

It means a ham sandwich comes from a pig reared in the East Riding of Yorkshire, which was butchered in a local village and cooked in Langlands' kitchens. The bread was made from scratch in Langlands' kitchens.

Tea cakes, scones, steak pies and muffins are all made by Langlands staff every morning, just as they have been ever since the doors opened on 1 April for the first time.

Langlands is now looking at growing its own vegetables and making its own jams and chutneys - not because they will be cheaper but because they will be better.

Combined food turnover is £1.2m and Langlands has spent £350,000 in the past year on new catering equipment so that its kitchens now have 13 commercial ovens.

Langlands now employs 47 catering staff and its coffee shop and cafe bar turns over more than £850,000 a year, with the farm shop turning over more than £350,000. Combined staff and food costs are 57 per cent.

Customer feedback includes one couple who travel a round trip of 170 miles from Manchester to buy scones to stock their freezer.

 

HIGHLY COMMENDED

Whitehall Garden Centre - The Wild Poppy Restaurant at Lacock, Wiltshire


FINALISTS

Golden Acres Nurseries - The Garden Cafe at John Browns Garden Centre
Grosvenor - The Cafe at Grosvenor
Mayshade Garden Centre
Woodcote Green Garden Centre & Nurseries

 

SPONSOR

National Garden Gift Vouchers National Garden Gift Vouchers (NGGV) are proven to generate one million additional transactions for members per annum. The NGGV scheme is promoted exclusively for the benefit of members of the HTA.


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