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Serving the region’s catering professionals

September 2010 • Vol 06 • Issue 09

GIORGIO LOCATELLI The top chef on the challenges of running a hotel restaurant

STAYING FRESH How refurbishment can extend a restaurant’s shelf life

SPOTLIGHT ON INTERIORS The impact of design on your outlets’ profits


An ITP Business Publication | Licensed by Dubai Media City

Contents Volume 6 Issue 09

20 Cover story 08 18



Contents September 2010

05 News Setting eco-friendly standards; Pascal Tepper signs deal with Atlas Hospitality; Caterer Awards shortlist announced. 08 A wedding feast to remember Weddings can boost F&B revenue for hotels and other venues, but can operators compete as budgets get tighter? 14 F&B Column Columnist Daniel During on how to select a franchise partner. 16 Designer Column Columnist Nigel Witham reveals the reasons why new outlets can fail. 18 Interview Michelin-starred chef Giorgio Locatelli tells it like it is.

20 Roundtable The experts dissect restaurant design. 26 Staying Fresh Lee Jamieson discovers the key to sucessful restaurant refurbishment. 35 All Organic An update on the growth of the organic food sector. 46 Staying In The top indoor furniture options for the industry 49 Product showcase The best and brightest in lighting, and the latest new products. 56 Last bite This month’s Caterer gallery features the opening of Gary Rhodes’ new outlet.

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For the latest news and stories go to

September 2010 Caterer Middle East


Web contents

Online The online home of Editor’s pick

On camera

Rhodes Twenty10 launch party The photos of Gary Rhodes’ new restaurant in Dubai went down a treat with online readers.

Top 10 outlet openings of 2010 While many people are still struggling to see the light at the end of the tunnel regarding the economic climate, there are two ways of looking at the 2010 openings. The first is to worry about increased competition, the second is to welcome new ideas and concepts.


Food fashion

Ramadan retreats

Top cocktails

Don’t become a food fashion victim

Where you should iftar in the holy month

How to mix it up in the world of refreshments

Most popular Ramsay’s Cape Town restaurant shuts down 1. Gordon top 10 outlet openings 2. The of 2010 eggs and jump3. Cockroach ing mouse in UK restaurant Noodle House 4. Jumeirah’s exits Marina after review Rhodes launched 5. Gary Rhodes Twenty10 in Dubai

For the latest news and stories go to


Caterer Middle East September 2010

News September 2010

Story of the month

Small outlets set eco-aware standards Doing your bit for the world will save money, say green operators For independent outlets outside a hotel, or without the backing of a major chain, practising green operations may seem tough — but it is not impossible to be environmentally friendly, according to some of the region’s more eco-aware operators. Yael Mejia, chief executive of Foodcraft Solutions and brand consultant for Baker & Spice — whose Dubai outlet, located in Souk Al Bahar, recently hosted the UAE’s first Farmers’ Market — said Baker & Spice Dubai was “probably one of the front-runners in practicing sound environmental policies in Dubai”. “We know the name and address of 90% of the fresh produce items in our stores and work directly with local farmers in the UAE,” she explained. “When it comes to every other ingredient, dry goods are looked at to make sure they arrive by boat, are properly organic and fair trade where applicable. “Even our Canadian beef comes by sea, and the animals are farmed along compassion in world farming guidelines, on restored prairie land. “We work with the regional seasons, and construct our menus to suit what is available, not the other way round. Working this way we are keeping our carbon footprint to a minimum,” Mejia added. Similarly eco-minded is the Organic Foods and Café brand, whose design was based on the mantra ‘reduce, reuse and recycle’, according to chief executive Nils El Accad. “Our tables are made from cable drums, while the other tables and chairs are from when Jumeirah Beach Hotel refurbished its Argentinian restaurant,” he explained. “The mirrors are from a palace that was renovated; the benches and bench tables are made of old pallets and ply-wood, while the lighting is made of old bottles and uses low energy bulbs.” Such efforts sound good — but how common is it for small operators to put such measures into practise in the Middle East? Not very, according to Baker & Spice’s Mejia — although she said a better support network could encourage green practices in future.

Headline grabbers P6 French baking legend in Dubai Pascal Tepper signs deal with Atlas Hospitality for new bakery chain P6 Caterer Awards finalists online now The shortlisted candidates are announced for this year’s Caterer Middle East Awards — visit www.

Baker & Spice’s Yael Maija: F&B outlets must train their buying teams to be more eco-aware and import food which is geographically closer. “Recycling is prevented by landlords who won’t allow composting of organic matter on the premises; and lack of recycling facilities in the UAE means that even if the plastic used is of a recyclable nature, it doesn’t get recycled,” she noted. Mejia said she believed “better flexibility on behalf of purchasing departments would help”. “Educating local wholesalers to understand the geography and agricultural possibilities of the region would be useful,” she asserted. “For instance, import onions from Oman or India if you must: it’s much closer geographically than Holland or Australia. Train your buying team to ask questions and demand answers from their suppliers — and check that they are telling you the truth. “Also, we would love to compost the outlet’s organic waste; Emaar would really come up smelling of roses if they would allow all of their F&B tenants to do something which is so simple and yet so revolutionary,” she said. Meanwhile Organic Foods’ El Accad believed “more help in getting recycled goods collected from our shops after we collect it” would encourage more outlets to make the effort. Both operators emphasised that responsible ingredient sourcing along with energy and waste control would result in more cost-effective operational practices for a business.

P6 Online opinions Our monthly web poll reveals the importance of outlet design P7 Sudanese dining Thomas Klein International to design destination restaurant in Khartoum P7 Hard Rock International targets region Hard Rock Café finally will reopen in Dubai at Festival City complex

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September 2010 Caterer Middle East


News September 2010

Atlas teams up with baking legend

French bakery chef Pascal Tepper to launch high-end sandwich franchise at Dubai Media City Atlas Hospitality has finalised an exclusive agreement with one of France’s best-known bakery chefs, Pascal Tepper. Managing director of Atlas Hospitality Siegfried Nierhaus signed a deal with Tepper that will see the French chef bring his world famous pastries and sandwiches to the United Arab Emirates. Tepper, who was awarded the ‘Meilleur Ouvrier de France’ (Best Worker in France in the Bakery Trade) by former French President Jacques Chirac, said he was excited to be bringing his expertise and brand to the Middle East. “Dubai is an important business destination and it is good to begin in such a vibrant city,” he said. “We feel that we have opportunities in Dubai and that is why we are here.” Tepper added he wanted his bakeries “to stand out in terms of quality”.

What is your view on the importance of F&B outlet design? Good design is vital; a bad interior can put off customers permanently


There are many outlets here, so you need at least a half-way decent interior to compete


It’s not massively important; outlets are about food and service, not carpets and wallpaper


It’s ridiculous that some outlets build their whole offering around the design; they won’t last..




Caterer Middle East September 2010

“My passion is about being better than the others — I have to defend this quality for myself and France.” Nierhaus said the concept of the Tepper bakery was finalised and the first property would be open by the end of 2010. Atlas Hospitality is now looking for suitable partners in the Middle East to roll out the franchise. “This is the start of an adventure and we have to find quality locations with the right partners,” Nierhaus explained. “We signed with Pascal because we wanted to do something creative and new — we were not looking for existing established partners that you could sign easily. We consider ourselves dynamic and we want to tell our future partners in the Middle East and South East Asia about this innovative bakery concept.” The first property will be located in

Atlas Hospitality’s Siegfried Nierhaus with Pascal Tepper. Dubai Media City, where there will be seating available for eat-in guests. Tepper said the latest trend in sandwiches focused on nutrition, something he has been attempting to innovate with. “You need to have nutritional and healthy ingredients, but get the right balance with flavours,” he explained. “Ultimately I want to produce a highquality product in the high-end market.”

Caterer Awards shortlists go live Finalists for F&B industry awards are revealed online The cream of the region’s F&B professionals were revealed this week, as the shortlisted nominees were announced for the Caterer Middle East Awards 2010. Revealed at Caterer magazine’s online home,

Who will win at this year’s awards?, the confirmed finalists span a variety of categories, including Kitchen Hero of the Year, Bartender of the Year, Waiter of the Year, Restaurant of the Year and the much coveted Chef of the Year title. The winners — to be selected later this month by a judging panel of independent industry experts — will be awarded in a glittering live ceremony at Park Hyatt Dubai on September 27, which will feature dinner, drinks and the official

presentation of trophies. Open to champions from all areas of the food service sector, the Caterer Awards seek to recognise those top performers across the Middle Eastern region who are continuously working to further the industry and improve cooking standards. For more information on attending the awards ceremony, please contact: For sponsorship opportunities, please contact or

News September 2010

are working on a concept that will position El Seref as a destination restaurant for both locals and tourists,” he added.

Hard Rock Cafe to reopen at Festival City

The upcoming El Seref project, described as ‘very interesting’ by TKI’s Daniel During.

TKI to design massive project in Sudan www.ho otellier ierm mid ddle dleeas a m//f&b f&

Getty Images

Thomas Klein International has been appointed F&B consultant for a destination restaurant at the El Seref project in Khartoum, Sudan. The 40,000ft² site, due to open early next year, is owned and managed by El Seref Tourism and Hospitality, and the total investment inclusive of interiors

and kitchen fit-out is estimated at approximately $8 million. Thomas Klein International managing partner Daniel During said that the size of the space, coupled with the history of the site, made for a “very interesting project”. “The biggest task now is to devise exciting concepts for such a big space,” said During. “Due to the location of the project, we

When Hard Rock Café reopens at Dubai Festival City (DFC) in October this year it will be its largest outlet outside North America, the US-based hospitality company has confirmed.

Hard Rock will finally reopen in Dubai.

Hard Rock Cafe Dubai previously spent 11 years located on Sheikh Zayed Road and closed in March 2009. However, Hard Rock International announced in August that the rock-‘n’roll themed restaurant would reopen at DFC. The new 26,400ft² themed café will have seating for 300 guests, Hard Rock’s traditional rock ‘n’ roll memorabilia and a Hard Rock Shop, which will be the largest rock memorabilia retail store in the world. The outlet’s crowning glory will be an 118ft guitar. Hard Rock International also confirmed that it is planning to follow up the opening of the new café with the launch of themed Hard Rock hotels in Dubai and Abu Dhabi in 2013.

News analysis September 2010

A wedding feast to remember Weddings contribute a significant percentage to a venue’s F&B revenue, but with budgets tightening, what can operators do to stay ahead of the game?

The Ritz-Carlton Dubai.


Caterer Middle East September 2010

News analysis September 2010


he time has come for F&B managers to take stock and review the competitiveness and operational efficiency of their wedding packages. Many operators have reported a slow summer, in part due to the current economic climate and to the timing of Ramadan this year. Seasonal trends should see demand return next month, but with large revenues at stake, operators should now take the opportunity to review the current market trends and ensure that their offerings are competitively positioned. In some cases, the average wedding spend has decreased, whilst customer expectations have remained steadfast. Therefore, it has become essential to develop high-quality F&B offerings that are priced to maximise revenue without impacting upon the guest experience. “The market has changed rapidly over the past two years,” explained Ritz-Carlton, Dubai director of F&B, Wael Maatouk. “People are seeking out more value, with smaller budgets to serve the same luxury experience.” By default, the Ritz-Carlton in Dubai is naturally more exposed to slower summers because the majority of its wedding clientele is drawn from the local expatriate community. Maatouk predicts that business will peak between October and April with more than 60 events in the pipeline. With a stronger focus on Emirati weddings and as the preferred venue for Royal weddings, Dubai World Trade Centre experiences strong year-round demand. In the first two quarters of 2010 alone it reported a 21% increase in wedding trade — especially at the highend of the market. However, it has also noted its clients becoming more budget-conscious, as Dubai World Trade Centre weddings manager, Najah Al Mullah revealed. “For us, the customer spend has remained consistent, but clients are now operating within more of a set budget and are therefore making fewer special requests. However overall, the wedding business in the UAE is booming and still provides a substantial contribution to our F&B revenues.”

achieve this by offering a basic package that their clients are able to modify to suit their needs and their available budget. “We have a standard menu selection which our clients can choose from — ranging from the traditional to the bespoke,” explained Al Faisaliah Hotel and Hotel Al Khozama director of marketing, Khaled Al-Idrissi. “However, we can tailor our packages to the clients’ requirements and are able to modify our menus to suit the tastes of the wedding party.” Offering customised and bespoke wedding arrangements does not come without problems for operators. Weddings are emotionally charged events that require input from a number of people — unless clear lines of communication are established early on, operators can soon find themselves embroiled in family disagreements. “You should ask the bride and groom to assign one person to communicate with the hotel,” suggested Al-Idrissi. “This helps us to overcome a common issue: the differences in opinion between the families on how the wedding should be orchestrated and implemented.” Regardless of how much planning has gone into an event, last minute changes will always be an issue. Most operators across the region factor this into their planning by ensuring that clear rules about last minute changes are firmly established early on and resources are readily available if required. At the Four Seasons Hotel in Riyadh, weddings account for nearly 40% of the F&B revenue, so the need to respond effectively to last minute changes is strategically important to the business. “The most common last minute request is for us to change the set up of the ballroom,” explained assistant director of catering, Mohamed Emam. “For every event, we have to be confident that we can

Bespoke Products A key challenge for operators is to offer a competitively priced wedding product which can adapt around the individual needs of the client without escalating the cost. Most hotels

A wedding at Dubai World Trade Centre, which reported a 21% increase in wedding trade during the first two quarters of 2010.

September 2010 Caterer Middle East


Khaled Al Idrissi: We do bespoke menus.

Customised set-up by Ritz-Carlton Dubai.

achieve this, so we ensure that an on-site team for the ballroom is always available to make any necessary changes. “We also see a lot of special menu requests, so our chef together with the culinary team can modify any menu and source the ingredients up to 72 hours before the wedding,”added Emam.

Quality Service Wedding events place extra demand on the business’s human resource, and implementing a flexible staffing solution can pose real difficulties for operators. Venues with consistent year-round demand for weddings can recruit a large permanent team, but for many operators weddings are only part of their portfolio. Recruiting casual labour for the event can present quality issues and stretching the business’s existing human resources may prove to be logistically difficult. One cost-effective solution is to streamline the operation and ensure a smooth service on the day. “Emirati weddings are much larger than western ones, ranging from 1000 to more than 6000 guests,” explained Dubai World Trade Centre’s Al Mullah. “For these larger weddings, the coordination and communication between the production and operation teams is vital.

Our chef can modify any menu and source the ingredients up to 72 hours before the wedding” Mohamed Emam

News analysis September 2010

Top Last Minute Requests 48 Hours Notice: Dubai World Trade Centre Dubai World Trade Centre experienced the ultimate last minute request when it was given just 48 hours to cater for a high-profile wedding with more than 2000 guests. 24 Hours Notice: Al Faisaliah Hotel, Riyadh At a recent wedding in Riyadh, the bride and groom insisted on a specific kind of caviar only available in the UAE. With only 24 hours to go, the hotel flew an employee out to Dubai to purchase the caviar and

Najah Al Mulla from the Dubai World Trade Centre.

return early the next day ... just in time!

“We plan down to the very last detail and assign two dedicated service staff to each table. We also strategically set up service stations to ensure timely and efficient service to the guests. The service time for a 6000 person seated wedding ranges from between 20-25 minutes.” In the region’s more conservative countries, there are even more factors to con-

4 Hours Notice: Ritz-Carlton, Dubai Everything was setup for a luxury outdoor wedding when heavy rain hit Dubai four hours before the event. Every single member of staff at the hotel (including finance, HR and sales) rescued the day and moved the entire event indoors. Once the sun returned the decision was made to move it back outside again.

sider when developing a human resource strategy. For example, providing service for large wedding parties in countries like Saudi Arabia where males and females are separated can pose logistical problems, as Four Seasons Riyadh’s Mohamed Emam explained. “We were once required to provide service for more than 1500 female guests,” he said. “It was a seated dinner, which requires more staff anyway, but in Riyadh it was necessary to bring in more female members of staff to perform the service.” With the wedding season fast-approaching, the challenge for F&B operators now is to devise a strategy to maximise revenue in a changing market: budgets are tightening, clients are seeking out value, staff and food costs are climbing ... but guests are still demanding the same luxury experience. How will you give your guests a wedding feast to remember?

S.Pellegrino has asked Missoni, one of the most widely respected brands of Italian fashion, to create the first Special Edition bottle under the S.Pellegrino meets Italian Talents new international project. This initiative aims at promoting the Made in Italy excellences developing significant synergies with other premium Italian brands famous at worldwide level. S.Pellegrino discerned Missoni as the ideal partner for the first year edition. The two brands share common values such as Italian style, elegance and brand heritage. They are both authentic and unmistakable, real ambassadors of the Italian lifestyle in the world. Missoni has interpreted with its distinctive and unique zigzag motif the iconic S.Pellegrino label. The Special Edition Bottle will be available at best restaurants starting from September.

Exclusive 100cl glass

Editor’s comment Volume 6 Issue 09

Registered at Dubai Media City PO Box 500024, Dubai, UAE Tel: +971 (0)4 210 8000 Fax: +971 (0)4 210 8080 Offices in Dubai & London ITP Business Publishing CEO Walid Akawi Managing Director Neil Davies Managing Director Karam Awad Deputy Managing Director Matthew Southwell Editorial Director David Ingham VP Sales Wayne Lowery Publishing Director Diarmuid O’Malley Editorial Group Editor Louise Oakley Tel: +971 4 210 8495 email: Staff Writer Harriet Sinclair Tel: +971 4 210 8394 email: Online Editor Jamie Knights Tel: +971 4 210 8564 email: Contributors Lee Jamieson, Lucy Taylor Advertising Publishing Director Diarmuid O’Malley Tel: +971 4 210 8568 email: Commercial Director Sarah Worth Tel: +971 4 210 8595 email: Deputy Sales Manager Tatjana Sarcevic Tel: +971 4 2108613 email: Int. Sales Manager, Hospitality & Catering Middle East & India Amanda Stewart GSM: +44 7908 117 333 email: Skype: amandajanestewart Studio Group Art Editor Dan Prescott Designer Wasim Akande Photography Director of Photography Sevag Davidian Senior Photographers Efraim Evidor, Jovana Obradovic Staff Photographers Isidora Bojovic, George Dipin, Murrindie Frew, Lyubov Galushko, Shruti Jagdesh, Mosh Lafuente, Ruel Pableo, Rajesh Raghav Production & Distribution Group Production & Distribution Director Kyle Smith Deputy Production Manager, ITP Business Matthew Grant Managing Picture Editor Patrick Littlejohn Image Editor Emmalyn Robles Distribution Manager Karima Ashwell Distribution Executive Nada Al Alami Circulation Head of Circulations & Database Gaurav Gulati Marketing Head of Marketing Daniel Fewtrell ITP Digital Director Peter Conmy ITP Group Chairman Andrew Neil Managing Director Robert Serafin Finance Director Toby Jay Spencer-Davies Board of Directors K M Jamieson, Mike Bayman, Walid Akawi, Neil Davies, Rob Corder, Mary Serafin Circulation Customer Service Tel: +971 4 210 8000 Certain images in this issue are available for purchase. Please contact for further details or visit Printed by Color Lines Controlled Distribution by Blue Truck

Appearances matter How many times have you heard the phrase ‘it’s what’s on the inside that counts’? It’s human nature to judge by outward appearance, but succumb to this, however unwittingly, and no doubt you will be reminded of this old adage. This philosophy certainly has its place when it comes to our family, friends and colleagues. But does it ring true when it comes to our restaurants and bars? Your chef might cook up the best food in the town, but if guests are being asked to sit at tatty tables in a dingy atmosphere, his dishes are unlikely to even make the pass. On the other hand, if the design is so intricate and the surroundings so quiet that the customer feels obliged to behave as if at a state dinner, this is not going to encourage anyone to stick around longer than it takes to eat their pommes frites. In short, the design of your outlet will be your guests’ first impression of your product, and will, therefore, greatly influence public perception. We are said to form an opinion on people within less than a few minutes. If we also do this with an outlet, and our reaction is negative, only a truly stellar plate of food will shake that initial feeling. In ‘The Interiors Issue’, Caterer Middle East has spoken to many industry experts, from branding experts through to F&B managers about the importance of design and with this, garnered varied opinions. For some, a timely redesign prevents an outlet from passing its expiry date (Michael Goodman, page 29), for others the restaurant must be designed to tell a story (Nigel Witham, page 16), while even for the accomplished concept creator, it is the food that matters most (Daniel During, roundtable pages 20-24). When I judge a restaurant’s design, the over-riding element for me is in its ambience. Does your outlet make me feel comfortable? Is the layout so smooth operationally that I don’t notice the waiters bustling around me? And are the materials chosen so carefully that the chairs glide effortlessly out from the tables and the floors prove slip-proof for the high heel wearer? Of course, I also appreciate something that wows me and provides a talking point. It could be anything though — from features as simple as the tableware through to an open kitchen, or, my favourite, a stand-out waiter. In my opinion, it is this balance between feeling at home and being impressed that is at the heart of good design. Not every feature will appeal to every guest, but invest in getting the overall ambience right, and it will leave your guests free to discover their own favourite element on the outside. It’s a tough task — appearances matter, but they are not enough to hide behind.

The publishers regret that they cannot accept liability for error or omissions contained in this publication, however caused. The opinions and views contained in this publication are not necessarily those of the publishers. Readers are advised to seek specialist advice before acting on information contained in this publication, which is provided for general use and may not be appropriate for the readers’ particular circumstances. The ownership of trademarks is acknowledged. No part of this publication or any part of the contents thereof may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form without the permission of the publishers in writing. An exemption is hereby granted for extracts used for the purpose of fair review.

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Comment F&B column


During Finding the right franchise partner: Why chemistry is as important as capability when it comes to selecting the franchisee to deliver your business expansion plan Finding the right business partner is related to chemistry, the compatibility of your character with that of your potential partner and, most importantly, trust. Whether you are finding a joint-venture partner, an investor, or a franchisee, make sure that you get along before any other consideration takes place. My father always used to say, ‘If you don’t trust a handshake, don’t sign a contract’, and I still believe in this whole-heartedly. Contracts and formal agreements serve the purpose of clarifying doubts, and should something go wrong or turn nasty later on, then you have something to fall back on. However, you don’t really look at the contract on a day-to-day basis, and I have found that many times both parties go well beyond the contract stipulations, mostly because of their good relationship. You also need to consider who is the best ‘technical’ franchisee, as well as their good-will. Ideally you want him to have a proven record of operating similar food and beverage concepts, but if there is willingness to learn, it is sometimes better than having someone who may have the knowledge, but is not willing to implement it. In parallel to the professional ability of your partner, you should also look at his financial capability. It is crucial for you to first look at your business expansion plan, and then analyse whether your potential franchisee has the financial capability to grant such an expansion plan.


If the franchisee does not have the finance available immediately, you need to define whether your potential franchisee can come up with the necessary funds to meet your growth targets. Be very careful in choosing a business partner who needs to finance future expansion plans, as that could involve paying high interest rates or mortgages — something that will eat from the profitability of the business. Another consideration in choosing a franchise partner is whether you are dealing with an individual or a group of investors. It can be risky if you are dealing with the manager of a group and you don’t know the investor personally, as all the factors will be related to who ultimately calls the shots. And managers can change, while the owners in general remain the same. Make sure you know who is the final decisionmaker. Finding an ethical partner with a proven track record, and whose values are in line with your own is also key. Last but not least, it is important to define your expansion

strategy well before choosing a business partner or partners. Your expansion plan will determine whether you want to strategically have one partner for a full region, or whether you want to have a different partner in each country. The advantage of having one partner per region is that it gives you less of a headache, as you only have to train one franchisee. But if it turns out that it is ultimately not the right partner, putting all your eggs in one basket can be dangerous. Having separate partners in a region means you will require a bigger support team to manage all the partners. But you can also expand faster as each franchisee will be opening simultaneously. Having a number of different partners also gives you the advantage of being able to charge multiple individual country fees, rather than having only one partner who will be negotiating a lower single territorial fee. In conclusion, before you approach a franchisee (or reply to one who has approached you) to expand your brand out of your territory, I highly recommend that you focus on your requirements and expectations regarding expansion, and then value the potential partner’s financial capability, his business ethics, area of coverage and experience in the business. And once you have gone through the process of strategically shortlisting your potential partners based on the criteria above, meet them over coffee and see how the conversation goes... To read this article in full, please visit: Daniel During is the managing partner at professional turnkey consultancy Thomas Klein Group. Details:

Take your potential franchisee for a coffee.

Caterer Middle East September 2010

Dubai 215x285.indd 1

25-02-2010 11:02:14

Comment Designer column

Witham Nigel

The myth of restaurant failure: why developing, understanding, executing and then ‘sticking to your story’ is the key to your outlet’s success In a meeting the other day someone made that ubiquitous comment that 90% of new restaurants fail in their first year. I expect that, like me, you’ve heard this gem of wisdom so many times that you no longer question it, but if 90% of new restaurants failed so soon it would not take long before there were hardly any left. Yet, just about everywhere I go, there are more restaurants and cafés than ever before. Then again, last year my team and I spent more than 1000 hours creating a beautiful coffee shop brand only to see it go out of business just 16 weeks after it launched. This failure got me thinking, and I realised what should have been obvious to me. Nearly all of the restaurants I have worked on for experienced operators have succeeded. On the other hand, a significant proportion of those restaurants I have designed for complete novices have turned to dust in the first few months.

Who could ignore these tasty truffles?


Caterer Middle East August 2010

The biggest consistent failing I’ve noticed novices make is what has become called ‘mission drift’. This means losing sight of the concept, or as I prefer to say, not sticking to your story. My client’s failed coffee shop was supposed to tell a story about luxurious Belgian chocolates combined with elegant Italian coffee. We conceived a strong name and marketing slogan, funny advertisements and gorgeous interior design. So why did it bomb? Before he opened up his outlet, our client lost his nerve. He said: “What if people don’t want to eat chocolate all the time? I’d better sell sandwiches too.” So, disregarding his own compelling chocolaty story, he told us to add a sandwich display fridge. When the outlet opened people bought plenty of those sandwiches. The trouble was that customers didn’t get the chocolate story; it had been sidelined. Potential high profits from chocolate sales turned into losses because no novice can realistically hope to compete profitably by selling commodities like coffee and sandwiches against competitors like Starbucks. The bank pulled the plug. So, not wanting this to happen again, I decided to do some research to find out what other experts think causes restaurant failures and I came across a fascinating paper published by a team at Cornell University

in 2005*. The team found that in the US, fewer than 30% of new restaurants failed in year one and fewer than 60% failed in the first three years. Mexican, subs and coffee shops were the most risky formats and Italian, burgers, and seafood the safest. After interviewing 20 failed restaurant operators the main reason for failure was found to be mission drift. Remember my client, if he didn’t believe in his own story, why should his customers? Scared of not getting success from their target customers, the novice tries to please everyone. But, as you’ll know, if you cook a meal that pleases everyone it will taste of nothing. Distinctiveness is crucial and it’s not all about food. The researchers found that most of the failed restaurateurs they interviewed could not explain their concept beyond the food offer, with descriptions such as ‘vegetarian’ or ‘pizza’ being typical. They had no deeper story or understanding about communicating original and genuine core values. If you want to launch a restaurant think up a complete concept; it does not have to be new, just thorough, compelling, matched to its environment and excellently executed. Find the right team of designers that can bring the whole package together, including branding and an interactive website. Meanwhile, I still own the intellectual property for a fully designed chocolate and coffee concept that I reckon would work brilliantly in the right hands. So here’s my challenge, do you want to franchise it and tell the story right? * Why Restaurants Fail by H G Parsa, John T.Self, David Little and Tiffany King. Cornell University 2005 Nigel Witham is a chartered designer who has been running his own international design practice for 20 years. For more information, email

Behind every excellent dish is an excellent cream.

“Whipped cream with white truffle oil and grated pistachio”

Nouveau Monde DDB Nantes P2010068 - RCS B 334 024 528 - © Thomas Duval.

By Pascal Barbot, Astrance, Paris 3* Michelin


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Président Whipping Cream (35.1 % fat) Product made in France Excellent holding quality, even after 48 hours. High whipping rate makes light and airy whipped cream. Perfect for dessert toppings. An even texture for hot dishes. Used by top French chefs.

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Hit the Top

20/05/10 9 05 21

People Interview

While in Dubai for a stint in the kitchen at Ronda Locatelli, Michelin-starred chef Giorgio Locatelli speaks to Lucy Taylor about why food needs “soul”


uring your stay in Dubai, you’ve been back in the kitchens of Ronda Locatelli at Atlantis The Palm — how’s the restaurant doing and what are your views on Dubai’s dining scene?


Straight-talking Giorgio Locatelli: hotels can really “suck the soul” out of a restaurant Caterer Middle East September 2010

Good — it’s growing, it’s getting its own character. Obviously it’s quite a battle because we are part of this big, monster business here, and if some important [Atlantis] hotel guest comes to the restaurant and doesn’t see his usual spaghetti bolognaise, he might not be happy with the hotel. I get that in London sometimes, but there if they are not happy about the choice on our menu, we can accept that. Some like us and some might not, but they have chosen to come to our restaurant. Whereas here, we are a restaurant providing a service for the hotel, which of course is an important part of our business. This is a huge hotel, and in high-season there are a lot of people staying here and wanting to eat at the property, so we really want to give a service to these people, being the only Italian outlet here. But we are working hard to make sure this doesn’t straighten out our character; we don’t want to become like any other Italian restaurant in Dubai, and there are a lot of them. Some are good, but many of their menus are carbon copies, all delivering the typical dishes people expect. I think it’s time to push the standards; Italian food in the UK 10 years ago was OK, but now if you come to London it’s incredible — because people have travelled around Italy so much over the past decade that they’re not going to want tagliatelle alfredo; they know no one eats tagliatelle alfredo, no one eats spaghetti bolognaise, and when they come to our restaurant, they want to try the speciality, to know which region it’s from. They are discovering the regionality of cooking. And I think Dubai will grow into that. Of course there are a lot of tourists coming here, and as such we have a very international clientele, which must be fully turned to Dubai’s advantage. But at the moment most restaurants here are in hotels, and some hotels can really suck the soul of a restaurant and take away from it. For example, at Locanda Locatelli, the buck stops with me: if a customer isn’t happy, I deal with the situation. It is me who will tell them to go or sort it out.

People Interview

But here, if there’s a guy who is staying in the Royal Suite, paying a lot of money, you’ve got to listen to them to an extent — and that can really deflate the importance of the restaurant. At the Taste of Dubai show earlier this year, you did a cooking demonstration with your mother; do you involve a lot of family recipes and dishes you grew up with in your current repertoire? Now, certainly. When I started out as a chef, I wanted to be international, and learn new things, so I spent a big part of my early career travelling and learning in London, Paris, almost pulling back from my own traditional food. Then when the time came that I decided I didn’t want to work for anybody anymore, and wanted to do my food, I went back to my roots — and things just progressed from there. And I have found myself looking back into those flavours and memories from when I was young. It’s my experience and the ingredients which I found to be the most inspiring elements. I see food in a very different light now: I’m not a kid anymore, I’m not a young man anymore, and I feel that this experience is something I can transmit. The technicality and complexity of a dish shows off your technical skills, but at the end of the day it is the soul of the food that is really important. I wouldn’t take a recipe and just make it; I always try to put some strong roots into a dish. Every year I go on holiday in Sicily, which is a great inspiration as well — it is a wonderful place and a great inspiration for me. But I want to give the feeling that my food is not just a recipe, and when I talk to people I always say you have to live with and be happy with what you do. A lot of people may not realise how important their memories of food during their childhood are, or how much impact they can have, but when these memories or emotions are made a part of your dish, people will understand the dish was not just a practical exercise, but an actual part of yourself you’re putting into it. Of course some of it’s about ingredients and technical knowledge and following a recipe, but it’s about retaining a sense of truthfulness in your food. And that’s been a challenge here in Dubai, because when people come to our restaurant in London, they may have heard what you’re about, but here, we came over with 14 people from London and started the whole thing off with seven in the kitchen and seven in the front, and we had 78 people who didn’t know anything about our concept. So in order to really educate them, it was important to convey those ideals that are inside us — and it is working. Here in Dubai the people who work for us are sponge-like — they are just soaking up information from us. It is so exciting, to see them growing so much. Every time I come over I am impressed.

Ronda Locatelli at Atlantis, The Palm: Locatelli selects his partners carefully. Do you have any plans to expand further, and open another outlet in the Middle East? Well, now this place is taking shape, then yes, we would potentially like to do something else — perhaps in Abu Dhabi. We were talking with some people about a development down there; there is the Institute of Italian Excellency, which covers Ferrari and Prada and so on, and a guy from there came down to see us and have a chat about whether we’d like to be a part of that. So next time I come back I’m going to Abu Dhabi. But there’s the issue that if you want to serve alcohol you have to put your place in a hotel, so we’ll have to find the right partner to work with, which is not easy — hotels can take your character away. When I come here I concentrate on what I’m good at: running the restaurant and cooking. If I had to come here and have accounts meetings and so on that would be so time consuming, and I don’t know if I’d have the time to do that. I already have that in London. But Zuma is a great example of a success story: it has character, because it’s outside a hotel and there is no other manager who is going to make a different decision based on a customer opinion card. As a stand-alone, you can just accept that as a standard, maybe 5% of people won’t like it. So if I serve 1000 people and 50 complain, I’m still on target. But a hotel is always trying to please everybody, which is not possible with something as personal as food. What else have you got coming up in the future? Well, we’ve got a selection of ingredients that we’ve got together, which we’re branding as Locatelli. Then we’re also working with Kerzner, not only at Atlantis but as a general consultant for their Italian food offerings throughout the world. So we have a team working with One&Only too. I have also had offers to go to Macau, and to the Far East, Singapore and China, so we’re looking into that too. Slowly and organically we’re trying to grow our brand.

September 2010 Caterer Middle East


Roundtable F&B interior design


F&B design specialists met at The Observatory at Marriott Dubai Harbour Hotel to discuss the importance of a good concept and surprisingly, why it is not always the best idea to spend a fortune on restaurant interior design

What is the biggest problem with F&B concepts and interior designs in the MENA region? Mark Burns: The region falls a little bit short in terms of the willingness to look at long term investments rather than short term — everything is budget now and it’s all about reducing capex in F&B outlets, especially in the back of house. A kitchen will outlast a concept by a ratio of two-to-one easily and, in some respects, fourto-one if we design it to the right standards. But owners cut capex in a bid to get the immediate return in 12


Caterer Middle East September 2010

months, neglecting all of the long term potential gains and the process of building a reputation. They are not looking at the way a lot of European stalwarts have operated, gradually building a business for 20 years — and who are now making a fortune. A lot of our clients look at that and think ‘great, we can have that’ and open a restaurant expecting immediate returns. You get your six month honeymoon period, but then what? We are seeing a huge amount of closures within one or two years, because

Meet the experts Daniel During — TKI Daniel During is the managing partner of Thomas Klein International (TKI), but prior to setting up the company he worked for Hyatt. He decided to leave the operations side of food and beverage to concentrate on his passion for design and concept creation. The company saw a niche and grabbed it, focusing on individual investors who wanted to open a restaurant in the region. These investors didn’t have the knowhow, but they were willing to pay to get it. Nine years later the company is a turnkey consultant, providing everything from feasibility studies and concept creation to interior design and branding. Helen Beardsley — Keane Helen Beardsley has spent the last nine years with Keane, and is a highly experienced client services manager. The company specialises in hospitality design for leisure and retail, working with clients who

range from experienced operators who already have their concept and just want a design scheme and a brand identity, to those who are starting out in F&B. It is then a case of concept creation, focusing on product service, environment and communication. The company has a head office in the UK since 1995, has been in Dubai for six years and in the process of setting up in Malaysia. Keane tends to work with operators that have standalone units in high streets, souks and malls. Mark Burns — Fondue

The managing partner of Fondue, Mark Burns has more than 25 years experience in the F&B industry. He has spent the last decade specialising in F&B conceptualisation, leading to him closely working with specialist interior designers. Most of the company’s work is with hotels and it looks to educate them on the need for specialist F&B designers rather than one designer fitting out the whole hotel. The aim is to get a “point of difference, a bit of passion and something a bit wow inside each of the properties we do,” asserts Burns.

the clients haven’t been able to look past that initial great ‘wow opening’ to see what will happen after that. Daniel During: I totally agree with Mark. If you are lucky with a bar you will get that wow opening, but if you have an unlicenced outlet you don’t even get the initial buzz. The trouble is they are not only looking for a quick return, they are also saving on the back of house. If you are going to a shop to buy an Armani suit you are going for the suit not the interior of the outlet. They tend to forget that one of the most important things in a restaurant is the chef, and they will invest millions in interiors because it has to be busy with gold and marble. But when it comes to spending money on a chef — and I’m not talking a celebrity, just a good chef — they would rather save AED 5000 ($1361) on his salary and get someone who is mediocre. That’s when you have restaurants closing after six months to a year, because the quality isn’t there — when you go to a restaurant you go for the food. Burns: In terms of the interior there is also a huge amount of copy and paste from elsewhere in the world coming here. Furthermore, there are very little creative and new passionate ideas from this

There are very little creative new passionate ideas from the region going out to the rest of the marketplace”

region which are going out to the rest of the marketplace. During: Totally Mark, but one of the reasons for this is out here, when you get a new house you get a designer to create your interior, whereas normally you would buy a house and add your own input. But due to the lack of personality and

Roundtable F&B interior design

The interiors’ experts debated the pros and cons of outlet design at The Observatory at Marriott Harbour Hotel, which provides stunning views of Dubai Marina. lack of direct involvement of the owner in the business, it is much tant to have a comfortable chair — extremely important. Some of easier for the owner to copy and paste a franchise. the schemes we would like to do really wouldn’t suit this market. I have clients that travel the world and We are doing some amazing stuff in London at the take pictures and say “I want this” and we moment using reclaimed materials and it already feels say “where will you put this?” — there is no 10 years old, which is part of the charm of the interior. A hotel will not give You sit on a bench, but there’s no way that that would cohesion and it happens a lot. you 300 metres of beach translate to this marketplace. How much is it down to you eduBurns: And also circulation has to be considered. We to open your little fish can’t use the same square metre parameters that we cating your clients? grilling restaurant” Helen Beardsley: I think it depends on the could in Asia for example. client. Some clients are very clear of what We have to be a little more opulent with the front of they want; they have pictures and reference house space, which brings challenges to maximise the points, but we wouldn’t be a consultant if we didn’t challenge thinkopportunities back of house to condense that space to give the ID ing and go to clients and try and excite them with new ideas. (interior design) guys a fair chance. You don’t get the buzz of the job by just doing a copy and paste — The 1/3 - 2/3 rule still works today and has done for 35 years, but it’s about trying to get something new. it only works up to a point here. We really need to push the size During: Sometimes you have to put your foot down and we have an of the toilets and the circulation and it all needs to be considered, obligation to do so. whether it is fine or casual dining. Beardsley: We find with design that this region is different in Beardsley: And the next challenge from that is the rents have come terms of what people want from an F&B interior. It’s very impordown, but even so, they still remain quite high so you have got a


Caterer Middle East September 2010

client needing x amount of covers to make it commercially viable, and yet you are trying to create a particular feel and that in itself is quite a challenge. Is enough research being conducted before opening an F&B outlet? Burns: I don’t think there has been. Everyone is a foodie these days around the world, everyone knows everything about food, everyone is a chef and a restaurateur. It was very fashionable to open restaurants here and it was only when they started failing that there was a realisation there was more to it than putting a sign above the door. I don’t think we are there quite yet — in terms of the MENA region against Europe and Asia — in encouraging clients to do more research and understand that there are down sides as well as ups. Do you think that owners sometimes create a restaurant for themselves rather than the client? During: Sometimes I have to say “I’m not designing for you and your friends, we are designing for the public”. One example was a client who had an AED 70 ($19) price point for lunch and he said “we are going to have lobster and crab legs”. We had to tell him that he couldn’t have that on the menu unless he wanted to give it away. If you like that, go to Nobu and eat it, at your place you are going to have spaghetti. Beardsley: It goes back to understanding the audience. We are finding that schemes we If I could liken it to did five years ago are a bit tired and need redoing, the clients what someone would are now more concerned about wear, it would be jeans putting in a scheme in that and a cool little t-shirt” won’t age or date. That’s down to materials, not going for lots of stainless steel and chrome and everything being glitzy. It’s about natural schemes with finishes that wear and get better with age.

How competitive is the F&B consultancy sector in the Middle East? Burns: We are getting greater competition coming in from outside for far less work. The good will survive and the rest will fail. There is not enough work to sustain everyone. Where we were competing with maybe six or seven companies previously, we have a job at the moment where we are competing with 37 companies. This is an issue in Dubai — suddenly everyone is a consultant. It’s going to drive down fees and, more importantly, the quality.

Roundtable F&B interior design

Where is booming in terms of F&B design? During: Most of my clients are outside of Dubai. Within the UAE we are busy in Sharjah, Ajman and Abu Dhabi and we are doing a lot in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Khartoum and Jeddah. Burns: There is a lot of excitement in Oman and we are doing a lot in Muscat. F&B design is really advancing well there. They have watched We are seeing a huge the UAE and looked at the amount of closures within successes and mistakes one or two years, because and they are picking the most suitable for their they haven’t looked past market, which is different that initial great from the UAE. ‘wow opening’” Beardsley: Oman is fantastic and we are doing a lot in Muscat. We are also in Malaysia as well and it’s a completely different market and culture. Their expat culture is different and we are doing some great stuff that wouldn’t work in this market. Burns: Syria and Iran [are developing too].


Panelists’ perfect projects for Dubai Burns: What I like doesn’t really work in this market at the moment. We need to look at more medium, value for money, high quality projects, something like a Jamie’s Italian in London, which I know is being brought over here and I know will be a phenomenal success. There is no booking and it does exactly what it says on the tin. Frankie’s has done it here, to an extent — it’s that Mediterranean cuisine where there is something for everybody. Beardsley: I would love, if anyone would like to invest in it, a gastro bar concept with polished concrete floors, breeze blocks, and graffiti, and for it to be really cool and arty, serving amazing Gary Rhodes-style food. It would have a British-style menu, and a DJ in the corner at weekends and, if I could liken it to what someone would wear, it would be jeans and a cool little t-shirt rather than dressing up and having to buy a dress. During: I’d like a chef/owner concept like they have in France. The trouble is you need a lot of money to open a restaurant in Dubai. You can forget about a small restaurant on the beach with a guy grilling fish and a couple of beers, but that’s really what’s lacking. A hotel will not give you 300 metres of the beach to open your little fish grilling restaurant, because they can make much more money doing something fancy. You should be able to walk in as you wish and the food is good without a big-name chef — John Smith who cooks great grub.

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During: Syria is huge. Burns: Damascus and Eleppo are pushing boundaries, doing things which wouldn’t necessarily work here, being more bold. There is a big transit with Lebanon and we can take the Lebanese mentality of eating, drinking and enjoyment of hospitality and really start to push it, utilising the old buildings and structures.

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Industry insight Refurbishments

Staying Fresh Lee Jamieson discovers the key to a successful F&B refurbishment


ike the food they serve, the region’s food and beverage outlets have a shelf life — and increased competition in the marketplace is making it imperative for operators to cost and time the refurbishment of their outlets effectively. If managed successfully, a timely refurbishment can generate substantial revenue by creating an opportunity to realign the brand with the evolving needs of its customers. Also, it offers an opportunity to re-evaluate the marketplace, differentiate the brand from new competition, and capitalise on emerging trends. In short, refurbishment programmes offer the opportunity to overhaul a business and change the public’s perception of it. “A redesign gives the operator a chance to demonstrate to the public that they are committed to staying ahead of the competition by offering their customers the best F&B product the market has to offer,” explains Blueplate Studios F&B director, Michael Goodman. “They have an option: either re-launch the same brand with a new perception, or create a new brand altogether. Either way, the operator is given a chance to reintroduce their business to the public. “They say you never get a second chance to make a first impression … F&B refurbishment is perhaps the only exception!” For branded F&B concepts, interior design is equally as important as the food and service. The interior is responsible for establishing the customer’s expectations, setting the ambiance and connecting the brand with lifestyle choices. Interior design is therefore the brand’s most powerful touch point. Unsurprisingly then, in a region driven by brands, refurbishment has jumped to the top of the agenda and an increasing number of operators are looking to overhaul their outlets and completely reposition their brand. “We are certainly seeing considerable interest in the complete repositioning of brands in the Middle East,” explains Tribe chief


Caterer Middle East September 2010

executive (and “chief worrier”) Stefan Breg. “I think that this trend has been driven by the double whammy of a recession-induced revenue decline and the increased number of competitors from all of the new restaurant openings.”

New brands — new ‘Choices’ In a bold move, Al Bustan Rotana Dubai used its restaurant refurbishment as an opportunity to reposition the F&B offering under an entirely new brand. Choices Restaurant, formally known as Fontana, was due to be refurbished as part of the hotel’s wider renovation project when market analysis and diner feedback prompted a complete overhaul in order to maintain a competitive position. Choices is a 24-hour, multicuisine experience which was developed to meet the diverse tastes and dining preferences of Al Bustan’s clientele. “In the end, it actually became much more than just a refurbishment project because we introduced an entirely new F&B concept,” explains executive assistant manager Franck Royer. “The Al Murooj Rotana director refurbishof F&B Philippe Harb ment was an

Industry insight Refurbishments

opportunity for us to ensure that we were meeting the expectations of our guests in terms of quality, comfort and design.”

Business beneath the brand When attempting to reposition a brand, refurbishment is only part of the overall strategy. The process will of course involve rethinking every element of the business from the marketing strategy to the food served — but refurbishment is perhaps the most powerful weapon in the operator’s armoury. “Although an interior redesign can effectively reposition a brand in the market, there are limits,” explains Breg. “For example, no matter how much redesigning McDonalds

does, as it has done in Europe, it will always be perceived as a quick, counter-service hamburger outlet!” It is important for operators to strike the right balance between repositioning and reinventing their brand. Although it is essential for any refurbishment to communicate a fresh, reinvigorated F&B concept, it must also stay It is important for committed to the brand’s core principles. The new generation of brand-savvy consumers will operators to strike the be quick to spot a refurbishment that doesn’t right balance between really reflect the business and will potentially repositioning and become disenfranchised. “Design can be used to reposition any busireinventing their brand” ness,” says Nigel Witham, a chartered designer who has run his own UK-based design practice for more than 20 years. “However, if it is hollow

The Café at Hotel Mulia in Jakarta: Refurbishing at the right time is important. When The Café re-opened following its update, there was a dramatic increase in average cheque.

September 2010 Caterer Middle East


Industry insight Refurbishments

Top tips

for an E Refurb ffective ishme nt

1. Have a plan: conduct a feasibility study to identify all of your goals and limitations. 2. Do your market research (again): the market is fast-moving. Does your brand still fit? If not, then refurbishment is the perfect opportunity to reposition. 3. Time it right: determine the best time to shutdown your operation for the refurbishment, or stagger it in phases if appropriate. 4. Get consensus: ensure a smooth running project by getting all the key players on board during the early planning stages. 5. Get a partner: don’t “go it alone” - invest in professional expertise to manage the project.

The Bamboo Lagoon outlet’s concept was restored rather than completely replaced.

6. Stay engaged: work closely with your partners to ensure a highquality refurbishment.

and the business beneath the design has not genuinely changed, then it will fail. For this reason, I feel strongly that businesses should work with strategically thinking designers who can help make sure that the delivery matches the promise.”

7. Be customer-centric: the refurbishment must meet the expectations of your customers — find out what they are! 8. Be bold, but sensible: a radical redesign can help you stand out in the market — but does it reflect your core business? 9. Stay in contact: keep your employees and loyal customers informed

From Refurbishment to restoration: Bamboo Lagoon

of new developments.

In the Middle East’s crowded F&B scene, the longevity of a brand is 10. Be commercial: don’t let your artistic side take over — you need to invest for profit. becoming more important to diners, as JW Marriott Dubai director of food and beverage Kevin Wills discovered when planning the renovation for its Bamboo Lagoon outlet. Securing a return “When the time approached for refurbishment, we were actually Increased competition in the region has fostered a commerciallyconsidering a complete redesign to better compete in the newer minded approach to F&B refurbishment from operators and intemarket place,” he explains. “New menu, new look and new food rior designers. As with any commercial investpresentations — all very exciting for a team ment, it is essential to understand the market eager to develop a new concept from scratch. drivers, weigh up the factors that determine the “However, upon a final competitive Most businesses scale of the investment, strategically deploy the diagnostic, we discovered that many of the experience at least a 20% project and find effective ways to measure ROI. newer Asian concepts had experienced sharp Perhaps the most difficult factor to judge is the decreases in demand shortly after opening. increase in sales following timing of the investment. Refurbish too soon ‘New’, without a timeless foundation, can a refurbishment” and you may not maximise the value of the existbecome ‘old’ quickly! ing fixtures and fittings; refurbish too late and “So, we made a U-turn and moved from a you could face having to rebuild your clientele refurbishment project to a loving restoration — and then there is the timing of the refurbishof a classic and successful concept. It made ment itself to consider. As any F&B operator knows, there is never a much more sense: our restaurant, though tired, had been continu“good time” to shutdown operations. ally successful and attracted a loyal clientele. I think it would have “All restaurants have a shelf life,” explains Blueplate Studio’s been a bad decision to have completely replaced that concept.”


Caterer Middle East September 2010

Industry insight Refurbishments

Double Decker’s Pub: A clear ROI strategy is at the heart of the upcoming renovations. Goodman, “and you have to make sure that you refurbish before you have passed your expiry date! After that, it will often take a complete rebranding to get you back on track. “But, if you refurbish at the right time, you can ride the wave of press and new customers to a healthier bottom line. When we refurbished The Café at Hotel Mulia in Jakarta, we worked with a brand that had been around for a while and needed an update. Immediately after the re-launch there was a dramatic increase in the average cheque and footfall traffic.” Measuring ROI on an F&B refurbishment is notoriously difficult. Although tracking footfall, customer spend and frequency of visits is relatively straightforward, there are also many indirect benefits of refurbishing an outlet. For example, F&B operations within hotels find it difficult to attach a cash value to the refurbishment’s posiBlueplate Studios’ tive impact in other areas of the Michael Goodman. business. The ROI of the F&B refurbishment may be evident

Industry insight Refurbishments

Case St ud

y: Choic es Res ta (form erly F urant ontan a) Rotana radically overhauled its F&B offering at the Al Bustan Rotana Dubai – making changes that impacted heavily on the venue’s refurbishment plan. The need to foster a more interactive relationship between the guests and their food was identified, and it was agreed that six live cooking stations would be introduced into the design. This posed a number of technical challenges for LW Design to overcome. The air circulation and the extraction systems had to be completely redesigned to enable cooking stations to operate in the middle of the dining area and the Mechanical, Electrical and Plumbing Plan (MEP) had to be completely reorganised in order to supply the cooking stations. “It is critical to conduct an analysis of what facilities are already in place and what has to be achieved,” said Al Bustan’s Franck Royer. “It is likely that you will find gaps that require technical expertise and these have to be figured into the refurbishment project.”

The new and improved Choices Restaurant has become a multi-cuisine experience.

The old Fontana which underwent a transformation to become the popular ‘Choices’.


Caterer Middle East September 2010

in occupancy levels, RevPAR, customer loyalty and cross-exposure to the hotel’s other F&B outlets — the sum of which could equate to a substantial return for the hotel in the long-term. “The most effective way to measure ROI is to look at the year-onyear profit and loss statement from before and after the renovation, as well as studying incremental revenue,” continues Goodman. “It’s best to trend the past several years of your establishment’s profit and loss to forecast accurately. “If you achieve a positive renovation and re-launch, the revenue will certainly trend up once you re-open, and the increase in footfall will be evident in both cover counts and the bottom line. The in-

Industry insight Refurbishments

cremental revenue should also improve, as you’ll be able to capture higher revenue per occupied seat.”

All aboard the Double Decker A measurable ROI strategy is at the heart of the forthcoming renovation of the Double Decker Pub at the Al Murooj Rotana Dubai. In a move to strengthen its market position, a refurbishment of the existing venue and the introduction of an outdoor beer garden is planned for the pub. They have partnered with NG Landscaping, a landscape architecture company that demonstrated its commitment to ROI focused design when working on the Park Rotana Abu Dhabi and some projects in Lebanon. “In general, when a project kicks off, too many people get involved in design decision-making and things get lost,” explains Al Murooj’s director of food and beverage, Philippe Harb. “Target markets are never clearly identified — or they get forgotten altogether! Operators also tend to set high expectations and unrealistic budgets and are later forced to make cutbacks on non-revenue-generating spaces, ultimately delaying the project. “At Rotana, we are much more systematic: we create an action plan, vision and mission which outlines what our expectations are. We then clearly identify the financial acumens along with a ROI strategy for the owners. Each week we meet with our partners and suppliers to review the progress and ensure that our plan for the project is on track.

Tribe’s Stefan Breg: The repositioning trend has been driven by increased competition.

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Industry insight Refurbishments

Useful Conta ct






LW Design Group Dubai-based LW Design Group has played an integral role in some of the region’s most high-profile hospitality projects. It delivers holistic solutions that embrace interior design, architecture and graphic design. Tel: +971 4 369 7800 Email: Web: Blueplate Studio International Blueplate Studio International offers a full range of specialised restaurant design solutions: everything from interior design to menu design.

The Café at Hotel Mulia offers its guests a beautiful atmosphere to enjoy their food in. “The cost of renovation will be high, but we are fully expecting to break even after six months and close the year with healthy results.”

Make or Break! The refurbishment of an outlet can make or break an F&B business. Unless backed by solid market research, a robust business plan and a clear ROI strategy, the expense of the renovation could easily outweigh the income generated. And, in a market which is flooded with choice, brand-conscious consumers could easily migrate to a rival brand if they feel that the concept behind the refurbishment is failing to meet their specific needs and expectations. It is, therefore, more essential than ever before for operators to properly research and implement their outlet refurbishments and make bold decisions if need be. If properly managed, the rewards will be substantial. “Most businesses experience at least a 20% increase in sales following a refurbishment,” concludes Witham. “I have seen anything up to 400% in my own projects.” That’s certainly food for thought!


Caterer Middle East September 2010

Telephone: +1 214 521 6753 Web: Email: Nigel Witham, Restaurant Designer Nigel Witham heads a team of experienced designers and works with food business experts to produce coherent new food and drink concepts. Telephone: + 971 50 104 7793 Web: Email: Tribe Tribe has created more than 200 restaurants and bars internationally and offers a service that generates both creative and strategic ideas for F&B businesses. Telephone: +971 50 323 1971 Web: Email:




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Ingredient focus Organic produce

Organic Revolution?

Organic dishes have crept onto menus across the region, but has the Middle East fully embraced the organic revolution? Lee Jamieson digests the issue In the Middle East there has been a long-standing perception that the region’s organic market is small and trailing behind other regions like Europe and North America. But, “organic” has become a buzzword for the region’s restaurateurs and the organic market is experiencing fast growth and greater exposure. An increase in demand, better understanding within the industry and tireless work from the region’s organic suppliers and importers over the past few years have opened up the region’s F&B outlets to organic ingredients. But can maturity in the organic market propel organic produce into the mainstream? “I think the organic market is still developing,” says Park Inn Muscat executive chef, Sandeep Kamal. “We’re still at the stage

where it’s advisable to use organic ingredients rather than a necessity. I’m sure that we’ll catch up with the US and UK eventually, but it will happen slowly and surely.” The Middle East’s organic market is following in the footsteps of Europe and North America driven, in part, by expatriates from those regions looking for products to satisfy their native eating habits and lifestyle choices. Increased understanding and interest in the use of organic ingredients has naturally followed the new demand, as Radisson Blu Hotel, Dubai Media City’s executive chef, Hassan Massood has discovered. “In Dubai, with its high expatriate population, I’ve noticed a sharp increase in demand,” he says. “Although there’s no real

September 2010 Caterer Middle East


education about organic food in Dubai, the expatriate demand for organic ingredients is somehow raising the awareness of organic food in the region and attracting the interest of others.”

Organics: good for business The use of certified organic ingredients in an outlet does much more than cater to emerging customer needs and lifestyle choices — rather, organic certification reflects the story behind the products and communicates the brand’s commitment to responsible and sustainable business practices. “We are in a constant process of implementing and sourcing organic food because it plays a major role in the food and beverage section of our Responsible Business programme,” explains Radisson Blu Hotel, Dubai Deira Creek, director of kitchens, Uwe Micheel. “Increasingly, our diners are becoming much more health conscious and concerned about their impact on the environment.” F&B operators are noticing a slow change in the business environment, reflecting growth in the number of consumers that are concerned about the ethical impact of their lifestyle choices. From a marketing perspective, the use of certified organic ingredients has become a way for operators to signal their commitment to sustainable production, ethical supply lines and quality ingredients. It is also an effective way for an operator to differentiate their product from the competition, a trend that has driven growth at Dubai-based Raw Coffee. “We’re working with lots of new startup cafes and restaurants that need to differentiate themselves from the outset,” says Raw Coffee’s managing director, Kim Thompson. “They have studied their end consumers and have discovered that many of them are both financially empowered and informed. They are concerned about the ingredients that go into their food and not driven purely by brands or trends.” By the nature of the ethical and lifestyle decisions Uwe Micheel: Diners are health conscious. that have

Ingredient focus Organic produce

Chef Didier Gusching: Looking for quality produce.

Sandeep Kamal: Organic market is still developing.

increased demand for organic ingredients, the region’s organic market has managed to remain steadfast during the economic downturn. Suppliers in particular are thankful for the stability provided by their organic ranges, with most reporting a mild slowdown in sales during the second half of 2008, followed by resurgence in 2009/10. “The new organic trend appeals to a specific category of people who are driven more by values than economics,” explains Kerry Beverages, Middle East marketing manager, Florence Degauque. “Even if their budget is reduced, they will still find good quality organic products, so the economic crisis has not impacted demand at all.”

Meet the suppliers... Organic Coffee Dubai-based Raw Coffee is a boutique roastery importing organic, fair trade Arabica green coffee beans. The directors are planning a trip to Ethiopia and Yemen later this year to select new organic origins. Raw Coffee

Organic Thai Sauces

“But, I think it all comes down to supply and demand. As there is more demand for organic food, we will naturally see an increase in supply which will lead to more competitive pricing in the future,” he adds. One way to avoid the high cost of

We’re still at the stage where it’s advisable to use organic ingredients rather than a necessity”

Increased demand and interest in organic produce across the Middle East has attracted the attention of UK-based Real Organic Foods. They launched their range of organic

Managing cost

Thai sauces last autumn with more

The cost of organic ingredients in the region is a key issue for operators because the products are relatively new to the market, reliable supply chains are still being established and the majority of stock is imported. Chefs, therefore, need to be selective and cost-conscious about the organic products that they source and find ways to absorb the cost of organic ingredients without impacting upon the cost of the guest experience. “Naturally, the cost for organic produce is still relatively high,” explains Radisson Blu Hotel’s chef Uwe Micheel.

products to follow.

Kim Thompson: People are concerned about food.

Real Organic Foods

Halal Beef and Lamb The Organic Meat Company sources its products from certified organic farmers across Australia and supplies Halal slaughtered beef and lamb for export internationally. All products carry the Australian Certified Organic (ACO) logo. The Organic Meat Company

imported organic produce is to source ingredients from local farmers. Many operators are concerned about the quality and reliability of local suppliers, but advocates like Kempinski Ajman’s executive chef, Didier Gusching, have an alternative view. “The common belief that there is no available local production in this region is simply wrong,” explains Gusching. “The real problem is to source local products of consistent quality and in sufficient quantity. “The current system is dominated by importers with strong logistical setups — and picking up the phone to these companies is much easier than waking up early to go to the market. But this is what our job is all about: it’s all about great ingredients and great tastes!”

September 2010 Caterer Middle East


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Supplier news September 2010

Supplier news

Slow sales on sweets in region ‘will grow’ Euromonitor finds regional confectionery sales have been affected by the financial downturn Retail volume sales of confectionery are expected to grow in the Middle East during 2009-2014, according to projections made in a report by global information publisher Euromonitor International. Findings showed that the retail value of sales of confectionery in 2009 had increased by 10% on the previous year, but the report also warned that these figures must be taken in the context of high inflation levels throughout the region. And although the report predicted an increase in retail volume sales of confectionery leading up to 2014, it also found that poor economic conditions have slowed the current volume growth for confectionery products in the region. The research indicated that the financial downturn has had a negative effect on premium confectionery categories such as chocolate, the retail volume sales of which

grew by 3% in 2009, down from the 5% growth achieved the previous year. It was also found that concerns about the potential impact sweets have on health in countries such as Saudi Arabia — which, combined with Iran and South Africa accounted for 50% of confectionery sales in the region during 2009 — were having an adverse affect on confectionery sales. Euromonitor International senior industry analyst Francisco Redruello said: “Health concerns on confectionery mattered before the crisis and they have continued to matter during the crisis”. This was reflected across the region, as retail volume sales of chocolate confectionery declined by 0.1% in Iran in 2009, and retail value sales of sugar confectionery products in South Africa were down by 4% on the previous year during 2009. However, the report also identified an

From homes to hotels, coffee lovers demand quality brews Coffee firm Boncafé Middle East identifies industry trend Coffee connoisseurs are on the rise in the region, according to coffee company Boncafé Middle East. Boncafé Middle East marketing and PR manager Sally Francis said: “Consumers now want to be able to produce the same good quality coffees that they can get on the high street at home, so they are really keen to educate themselves and invest in a domestic coffee machine for personal use.” The company has found that demand for domestic coffee machines has been high — second only to the sales of coffee blends. “Right behind sales for our coffee blends

is our coffee machine and equipment sales. We have a range of domestic machines, the newest being the Boncafé Cremesso capsule system, and this is something which is proving to be hugely popular with hotels for their in room solutions,” Francis explained. To encourage customers who want to prepare coffee themselves, Boncafé also offers advice and training, in addition to its range of domestic coffee machines, to ensure that its clients get the best out of their coffee. And the growth in coffee lovers is also making a difference to the company, with business doing well despite it being quiet season.

Francisco Redruello says health has always mattered. increase in retail value sales of gum, which grew by 2% during 2009, driven by a demand for functional gum, whose retails value grew by 6% in 2009.

25th anniversary of Andy Mannhart AG and Westlink Andy Mannhart AG and Westlink Marketing Services both celebrated 25 years of business this year, inviting clients, suppliers and friends from around the world to an anniversary event held at the Crowne Plaza Changi in Singapore. Westlink has been representing Andy Mannhart AG in Singapore and in 2009 the companies formed a joint venture under Andy Mannhart Asia Pvt Ltd, with the shared goal of becoming closer to clients in South East Asia in general, and to the food service and hospitality hub in Singapore.

September 2010 Caterer Middle East


Supplier news September 2010

TempTrak systems help to maintain HACCP principles Company’s information recording devices aid kitchen staff and improve hygiene standards TempTrak monitoring systems are helping maintain Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) standards in F&B outlets, said system users. Park Hyatt and Hyatt Regency hygiene manager Piyush Verma said: “This is incredibly helpful, and using TempTrak has made a real difference in terms of hygiene, and health and safety. It is also saving chefs time and paperwork, which makes their job easier.” The systems, which include the TempTrak mobile data logger, TempTrak sensor and TempTrak PDA, aim to assist F&B outlets in improving their hygiene standards by monitoring temperatures and allowing chefs to store food data electronically. “With systems like the PDA, TempTrak really understands how it works and has prepared an interface so that it can be used effectively. This device makes it easier and quicker to record food temperature and other information,” Verma added. Since Dubai Municipality has made Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) certification mandatory, it is important for all F&B outlets to ensure they are maintaining hygiene standards in their kitchens. Park Hyatt and Hyatt Regency hygiene manager Piyush Verma.

A diary of sweet success New supplier on the block ChocArts shares the tasty tale of its progress in the market to date... Welcome to the new ChocArts column! Over the next few months, I will report on the ups and downs of launching a company in Dubai. ChocArts Middle East Asia FZC, established in April 2010, is not only one of the fastest-growing chocolate companies in the HORECA industry, but also one of the most innovative branding and merchandise corporations in the region. Here’s what has been happening with us during July and August: July 21, 2010: We attempt to knock at the door of Etihad Airways, but fear that we are far too new a company for a business of its development status. July 25: Visiting Etihad was not a waste of time at all since we get support to contact the Duty Free at the local airport in Abu Dhabi, and stay in close contact to them. July 28: Our organisation is getting ready to produce and it feels great, because we can soon supply our first client Kempinski, who gave us a lot of trust. And there is more to come…. August 1: Gulf News is on the phone, asking if I would be available for an interview…yes I am! We are talking about my story and plan the interview and photo sessions for the Friday issue… August 8: I am asked by Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts to join their annual meeting and hold a speech on entrepreneurship, since we are partnering with this group on the ChocArts journey. August 10: Dubai strikes back! Our supplier for the wrapping leaves just stored the carton with the plastics outside the building in the sun — there is no need to explain what happened next! August 15: The Candylicious shop in the Dubai Mall — the biggest shop for sweets in the world — turned from a ‘no’ into a ‘maybe, we are very interested’. Let’s see how sweet this relationship will be. August 17: The contacts are going wild and we are about to create stories for all our new partners and clients around ChocArts to brand their business and create a profitable story for each of them. More ChocArts news in the October issue of Caterer Middle East. Frank Andreu CEO, ChocArts Middle East Asia FZC


Caterer Middle East September 2010


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Advertorial French foods

Embracing the flavours of France A host of French F&B brands demonstrate their strength in the food service sector, with constantly evolving, innovative products that deliver real solutions for everyday operations to the Middle East HORECA industry Thanks to a diverse array of products and a dedication to innovation, France’s food products offer a complete solution for the Middle East’s demanding and rapidly changing food service sector. French suppliers are committed to delivering creative, easy-to-use ingredients which specifically target the needs of the food service sector.

For pastry chefs: innovative new products that are simple yet effective SICOLY is a cutting-edge company offering fresh, frozen and processed fruit products. Confirming the brand’s creative flair is its range of Fruit Compotées: inserted into the centre of any creation, these lend a unique fruity touch to complement desserts. The Compotées can also be melted down, giving free reign to a chef ’s imagination. The tasty, smooth flavour comes from 80% real fruit — and the product is gelatine-free and bake-proof. Compotées are all natural, with no added perfume, colouring or preservatives.The product can be designed to meet customers’ specifications. info@classicfi

PRODUITS MARGUERITE, known worldwide for its unique PROD o sweet ingredients, has more than 90 years’ experience range of pa as a pastry provider. The brand offers an array of almond pastes, praline fondants, glazes, custard creams and dried fruits — all pralines, speci specifically designed for the artisan and for professional use. Th brand’s Pralin Croquant consists of almond praline paste, The with ch chocolate and pieces of crispy crêpe. Pistachio and white chocol chocolate versions are also available. The Croquant blends perfectly with ch chocolate or fruits, and will add crunch and finesse to all pastry creatio creations, whether spread on a biscuit or used as a filling. info.inte


Caterer Mi Middle iddle dd Eastt September 2010

Advertorial French foods

For the industry: new packaging developed specifically for the food service sector.

PRÉSIDENT, a company that sets the standard in terms of French butter, has repackaged chefs’ favourite Beurre Président. In a worldwide harmonisation strategy, Président butter now has gold packaging, designed to preserve the product’s quality and fully reflect its high worth. Président butters are available in various sizes and in special recipes for pastry shops or restaurants.

For bakery chefs: a baguette for every taste, easy and tasty enough for daily use. B BRIDOR launched its new range La Carte d des Pains in the UAE this spring, offering ssix baguettes inspired by traditional French rrecipes and skills. All are made from French fl flour and part-baked in a stone-floored ooven. Bridor respects a slow kneading of the d dough to give authentic taste and texture to th the breads, in true artisan style. These breads are ideal for use in modern d dining establishments, as they are partb baked, frozen, and easy to use, taking just 10 minutes to bake at 200°C. The range comprises: La 1778 (280g); La Campagne (280g); La Graines et Céréales (280g); La Délifibres (250g); La BIO (280g) and La Parisienne (280g).

For beverage professionals: Top French suppliers in the bar and beverage field. MONIN is the brand of choice in the gourmet flavourings field, with more than 100 flavours available — including premium syrups, exclusive liqueurs, gourmet sauces, fruit smoothies and cocktail mixes. Le Fruit de Monin Coconut is a purée with the perfect texture and taste of freshly grated coconut, only seen before in culinary applications and confectionery. The new purée is ideal for cocktails, smoothies, mocktails, iced teas, sodas or culinary use. Another newcomer to the collection is Le Concentré de Monin Sweet & Sour. Sweet & Sour mix is an essential product for any bar — although in many venues, it has to be made by hand by the bartender every day. In addition to balancing drinks with a sweet and sour taste, this ready-to-use product binds all ingredients and adds a little foam to the beverage. It can be used to create margaritas, daiquiris and hundreds more cocktails with no additional work; just pour, mix, shake and enjoy!

The firm’s Crème Supérieure Président, developed using traditional skills and used by many famous French chefs, has also received a packaging make-over. Specially targeted at food service professionals, the line has been created to suit both sweet and salty meals, is ideal for whipping into Chantilly cream, and is suitable for use in both hot and cold preparations.

L’Apéritif à la française More than 30 French brands are brought together in an excellent selection of the country’s top quality food and beverage products at annual showcase Apéritif à la française , an event aimed at the retail and food service industries. This year’s edition of the show was a great success, with more than 400 visitors.

September 2010 Caterer Middle East


Advertorial French foods

VITTEL stands out amongst a plethora of water providers, as one of France’s bestloved brands — particularly in the food service sector. In the Vosges Mountains, nature is full of flavour and even water tastes special. During its journey through the ancient mountain bedrock, Vittel natural mineral water collects natural flavour and its characteristic blend of sweetness and vitality. It comes as no surprise that wine and food experts rate it so highly; Vittel has a balance and a freshness that make it an ideal accompaniment for any meal.

Authentically French: bringing traditional, local French products to the UAE.

Foie Gras: Presenting the classic foie gras in a whole new way.

MONS, offering more than 350 French goat, sheep or cow cheeses, has been a family business over three generations, with traditional cheesemaking values. Having been awarded a ‘Meilleur Ouvrier de France’ (a top craftsman award), the Mons affineurs take great care nurturing the cheese so the flavours evolve and show the cheese’s personality to maximum effect.

SOULARD has introduced its groundbreaking Wok of Foie Gras offering, delivering top quality to the industry in an efficient new form. This exceptional new product comes only from Mulard ducks that have been reared outside on grassy fields. The line is easy to use, perfect for buffet, brunch, or Rossini, and comes in the form of diced frozen Foie Gras, 6/12g, IQF, packed in re-sealable foil bag. The product can go into a hot pan straight from frozen, and will be cooked in five minutes. The Wok line can be served as topping on a salad or on meat, or with a balsamic reduction or sauces, and is also perfect as an aperitif.

LESCURE is a dairy producer bringing a truly regional flavour of France to its produce. The brand’s Lescure UHT Cream 35% is produced in France, in the heart of the Charente Maritimes — a region famed for its AOP (Appellation d’Origine Protégée) products. Lescure cream is well known for its high quality, favoured by numerous chefs for its superior colour, taste and whipping rate. In addition, Lescure’s AOP butter is of similarly high quality, and available in different sizes to suit any application — in a 10g portion, 250g, 25kg and also in a butter sheet for pastry. For more information:


Caterer Middle East September 2010









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F&B essentials Indoor furniture

Themed outlets spark a design trend The increase in concept restaurants leads to new desire for matching furniture There has been a recent increase in food and beverage outlets requesting furniture to match their themed offerings, said furniture manufacturers. Mobilia owner Domenic Zaffino said: “It is all part of competition. It is not just about good food or service anymore. Restaurants are looking to set themselves apart from their competitors and having a design theme does just this”. The number of outlets requesting furniture to match part of a specific theme is clearly on the rise, agreed Kamal M. Hélou, brand manager, CarpeDiem LLC, for Grange and La Cornue. “People nowadays do tend to have a clear theme that they want the furniture to fit in to,

This outlet has a natural theme, with leaf-shaped patterns and green and brown Mobilia furniture to match the design. such as Arabian style, African style, Chinese style,” he said. In addition to the increase in themed offerings following the credit crunch, the regional style has also had an impact on the type of furniture requested by

Mobilia This sofa is a retro design by Lounge Innovation, Mobilia’s sister manufacturing company in Australia. The sofa is made using Dunlop ‘enduro’ foams with ‘luxura’ overlays, which deliver the ultimate support without compromising the essential lines or comfort of this very


commercial clients, said OK Furniture owner and chairman Hamidreza Nadali. “When looking at the Arabic taste specifically, pieces such as classic dark wood and leather chairs are never out of style. It

is also the case that since shisha places and cafés are under high demand in the UAE, we have numerous designs of leather and fabric made sofas and comfy chairs to be used for long hours,” explained Nadali.

O.K Furniture smart contemporary design. The frame features ‘jarrah’ hardwood sourced from a sustainable growth forest. Mobilia Tel: +971 4 323 6988 Fax: +971 4 323 5919 Email: Web:

Caterer Middle East September 2010

O.K Furniture and Chairs features highquality ranges of furniture with more than 22,000 designs. The Italian design barstool with chrome plated metal base and PU and leather seat is perfect for a restaurant or bar setting and provides comfort and style in one elegant and funky piece. O.K Furniture and Chairs Tel: +971 4 394 6400 Email:

Dates for the diary Calendar

DATES FOR THE DIARY... September 2010 W T


























01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 September 20-23 FHM 2011 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

September 5-7 Speciality Fine Food Fair London, UK

The established Food and Hotel Malaysia, now in its 11th year, is an international event for the HORECA and related industries.

Major trade event dedicated to helping delis, farm shops, independent retailers, restaurants, hotels, caterers and wholesalers source brand new products and form relationships with suppliers.

September 7-9 Restaurant & Bar Hong Kong 2010 Hong Kong, China Asia Pacificâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s premier fine dining and bar trade exhibition, targeting the top end of the hospitality market. Organisers are predicting record attendance of more than 10,000 visitors.

September 2-5 Food & Drinks Asia 2010 Manila, Philippines


The 14th edition of this industry show will feature speciality foods, products, confectionery and beverages. It runs in conjunction with the franchise and business systems exposition Food Franchising 2010.

September 6-8 VIV China Beijing, China

September 14-17 World Food Moscow Moscow, Russia

An international platform covering the full spectrum of the meat supply chain, from animal production to processing.

The 19th edition of this international exhibition for food and drink products incorporates World Fruits Moscow, World Seafood Moscow, World Meat

Moscow and World Sweets Moscow, as well as sectors which are dedicated to a variety of aspects of the food industry such as beverages, dairy, health foods, catering and technology. BarExpo Russia runs simultaneously, offering business advice, tasting sessions, bar master classes, flairing shows and competitions. September 23-26 GIDA Istanbul, Turkey This is an international food fair targeting the industry and boasting more than 420 exhibitors, with more than 45,000 visitors expected.

Under the Patronage of H. H. Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister of the UAE, Minister of Presidential Affairs and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority

The worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s largest food event is heading to Abu Dhabi 22-24 November 2010 Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, UAE Hundreds of exhibitors, thousands of brands. Register for your free access-all-areas pass at


Supported by S

International Exhibition

SIAL Purchasers Club

Middle East Food Summit

UNIDO-ITPO Investment Meetings

Supported by

1st Middle East Bakery Competition

Part of

Trends and Innovation Zone Organised by

Product showcase Lighting

Seeing the light From lamps to LEDs, Caterer highlights the products that illuminate your outlets

Fine Art Lamps


Fine Art Lamps Perspectives Collection is inspired by the geometric interplay of angular forms. This light has a golden bronze finish with shades of multi-tonal gold organza, which add a subtly varied and uniquely layered pattern of light to any room.

iColor Accent Powercore from Philips is a direct view linear LED fixture ideally suited for creating long ribbons of colour and colourchanging effects. Variable resolution offers the precision to display large-scale video, graphics, and intricately designed effects in a host of architectural, retail, and entertainment settings. These fixtures can be addressed and controlled in increments down to 1.2 inches (30mm), or up to 8ft (2.4mm) and have flexible positioning

Fine Art Lamps Tel: +1 305 821 3850 Fax:+1 786 513 0439 Email: Web:

Philips Tel: +971 4 335 3666 Fax:+971 4 335 3999 Email: Web:

Meduse Design The Sepia Collection from Meduse Design is comprised of five main models, inspired by underwater sea life. Through the use of a built-in ring of coloured LEDs, each model can be transformed into a luminous object. The futuristic design of the collection is achieved by the use of traditional craftsmanship with high quality steel, and the use of Czech hand-blown ‘Bohemian Glass’.

Arte Di Murano This light from Arte Di Murano is an elegant combination of classic and modern lighting, providing a unique addition to any room. Murano glass, which Arte Di Murano has great experience manufacturing, is said to create ‘emotion’ in a room, which provides atmosphere to its surroundings. Arte Di Murano Tel: +39 082 320 1000 Fax: +39 082 340 8613 Email: Web:

Meduse Design Tel: +42 077 629 8366 Email: Web:

Andromeda Hydroargentum from Andromeda is a beautiful new collection which is designed by Leonardo De Carlo and will initially be available in three colors — silver, blue, and bronze. The Hydroargentum collection’s dimensions vary from 15 to 96 lights and it can be redesigned and customised according

to the architectural parameters of the space it will be used in. Andromeda Tel: +39 4 173 6674 Fax: +39 4 152 74453 Web:

September 2010 Caterer Middle East


Supplier Product showcase

New products Every month, Caterer brings you the best and brightest new products on the market

Reef Range


The new Reef Range from Dalebrook comprises a selection of small finger food dishes with an accompanying tray. The products are sleek and stylish in their design and offer multiple uses. Crafted from 100% food safe and dishwasher proof melamine, they are chip resistant with longer service expectancy than porcelain. The Reef Range products can be used together for an elegant buffet or canapé serving solution or individually as stylish side dishes or bowls for dips and sauces.

Cooking Chef has introduced integrated induction cooking directly in the mixing bowl. You can now enjoy all of the benefits of everyday ‘cold bowl’ planetary mixing when preparing cakes, pastries and dough, with the added advantage of being able to heat and cook directly in the bowl.

Dalebrook Tel: +44 137 651 0101 Fax: +44 137 651 0153 Email: Web:

Hobart The new Premax FP undercounter and Premax GP glasswasher models have a host of new technological features. These new Hobart models feature cutlery steam cleaning which brings about vast improvements in washing results compared to conventional systems on the market. Hobart Tel: +49 781 600 2820 Fax: +49 781 600 2819 Email:

Kenwood Tel: +971 4 324 4800 Web:

Silver Arcade Linen

Silver Arcade Linen offers a range of food and beverage linen with more than 50 different designs and colour options. Some of the special linen launched recently includes wrinkle-free fabric for chair covers. The wrinkle-free fabric is a specially treated polyester material which sustains minimum wrinkles on chair covers which helps reduce laundry bills. The fabric can be used for placemats, runners, coasters and tray mats. Silver Arcade Linen Tel: +971 4 267 3834 Fax: +971 4 267 3841 Email: Web:

One &Only


The finest cocoa beans and select ingredients make One & Only drinking chocolate what it is. Whether it is the taste of soft oranges, or of pungent spicy blends, or the flavour of golden-yellow caramel or of delicate hints of cinnamon, One & Only chocolate powder is an insider’s tip for those who love chocolate. The drinking chocolates all have a cocoa con-

Caterer Middle East September 2010

tent of at least 32% and are easily prepared with warm milk. Market Grounds Tel: +49 40 80 903 0037 Fax: +49 40 80 903 0099 Email: Web:

Distributors & supplies directory Distributors ABC Baking Tel: 009714 885 3788 Email:

B.A.K. (Oman) Tel: +968 - 2459 1065 Fax : +968 - 2459 6270 Email:

Country Hill International Tel: +971 4 347 0200 Email:

Emf Emirates Tel: +971 4 2861166 Fax: +971 4 2863080 Email:

Lactalis International Tel: +971 4 3298061 Email:

La Marquise Tel: +971 4 343 3478 Email:

Baqer Mohebi Tel: +971 4 396 9777 Email: (Marketing & distribution of food & non food FMCG, food ingredients & Cuban Cigars)

Suppliers BEVERAGES Boncafe Tel: +971 4 2828742 Email:

Franke Tel: +41 6 2787 3607

Lavazza Tel: +971 50 5959385 Fax: +971 4 3211274 Email:

Marco Beverages Tel: 01933 666 488 Email:

Monin Tel: +971 50 940 0918 Email:

Horeca Trade Llc Tel: +971 4 3403330 Email:



Tulsidas Lalchand

Al Diyafa Tel: 009714 369 2888 Email:

Clearwater Seafoods

Tel: +971 4 881 5552 Email:

Tel: 001 902 443 0550 Email:


Giles & Posner Tel: +44 1923 234040 Fax: +44 1923 245151 Email:

Tel: +971 4 408 8100 Email:

Tel: +971 50 6447837 Email:

Tel: +41 318 585111 Email:

COOKING Convotherm Tel: +49 884 7670 Email:

MKN Tel: +49 5 3 318 9207 Email:

Johnson Diversey Gulf Fze Tel: +971 4 881 9470

MGK/Temptrak Tel: 009714 3309071

Newell Rubbermaid Tel: +971 4 292 3444 Email:

RESTAURANT/ HOTEL SUPPLIES Churchill China Tel: +44 1782 524371 Email:

Schaerer Nestlé Professional Tel: +971 4 408 8100 Email:

Pritchitts Tel: 02082907020 Email:

Quraish Tel: +966 2 6532441 Email:

Tel: +971 2 6730 565 Email:

TSSC Tel: +971 4 343 1100 Email: (Catering/kitchen equipment, chocolate/ coffee equipment, FMCG, refrigeration)

JSD Products Tel: +44 1727 841111 Email:


Unilever Foodsolutions

Lambweston Nestlé Professional

Tel: +971 4 3533736 Email:

Tel: +971 4 2675406 Email:

Tel: +49 421 3502 387 Email:

Shura Trading

Tel: +9714 - 285 2222

Bakemart Llc

CSM Deutschland GmbH

Fax : +9714 - 222 2900 Email:

Dalebrook Supplies Ltd

Tel: 009714 334 1040 Email:

Royal Host Tel: +966 2 2522289 Email:

Villeroy and Boch Tel: +352 46821208 Email:

CATERING EQUIPMENT Electrolux Professional Tel: +39 0434380304 Email:

Koma Middle East Tel: 9714 887 3334 Email:

Robot Coupe Tel: 0033 143 988833 Email:


Tel: 0044 1376 510101 Email:

Duni AB Tel: +46 40 10 62 00 Fax: +46 40 39 66 30 Email:

Impulse Enterprises Tel: 001 954 9579917 Email:

Dick Tel: +49 7 153 8170 Email:

Victorinox AG Tel: +41 41 818 12 64 Email:

Appointments September 2010

Appointments The Exchange Grill at the Fairmont Dubai has welcomed new chef de cuisine Fabio Pineda, a Columbian national with more than 10 years’ experience in the kitchen. Pineda’s passion for food began at an early age, working in restaurant kitchens during his school holidays. A few years later, as a graphic design graduate, he took the decision to return to his first love, the kitchen, and has since gone on to apply his design knowledge to his work with everything from menu engineering to his distinctive plating style.

Okku Restaurant and Lounge has appointed a new general manager, Alexandre Heller. Heller’s career spans more than 20 years at some of the world’s most prestigious and glamorous venues, including the Eiffel Café in Nice, Ganesha in Miami, and most recently at the infamous Nikki Beach in Saint Tropez. Commenting on the new appointment, Markus Thesleff, co-founder of Okku, said: “With Alexandre Heller’s international experience and passion, we are certain he will offer great support and leadership”.

Taking over the role of executive chef at the Coral International Hotel — Al Khobar is Mohamed Bin Jamil Bin Hussain, a Tunisian by birth, who has lived in Saudi Arabia since 1982. During his 35-years in the kitchens, Hussain specialised in hotel catering and joins Coral Hotel Al Khobar from the Mercure International at Khamis Mushayt. Hussain started out learning in the trade with a five-year stint as chef at La Zurangi restaurant in Tunisia, before joining the Hotel White Pigeon, then moving overseas to broaden his experience.

Mark Lee has been promoted to general manager of the Wafi Hospitality and Food and Beverage Division in Dubai. In his new position, Lee will be responsible for two hotel properties — The Arabian Park Hotel and The Park Hotel Apartments — as well as 13 restaurant and bar outlets located at the Wafi complex. Lee joined the Wafi Group in 2001 as general manager of the Planet Hollywood complex. He became general manager of Arabian Park Hotel in 2006, and also co-ordinated the handover of Park Hotel Apartments, Wafi’s newest property.

Dates for the diary Calendar

DATES FOR THE DIARY... September 2010 W T


























01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 September 20-23 FHM 2011 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

September 5-7 Speciality Fine Food Fair London, UK

The established Food and Hotel Malaysia, now in its 11th year, is an international event for the HORECA and related industries.

Major trade event dedicated to helping delis, farm shops, independent retailers, restaurants, hotels, caterers and wholesalers source brand new products and form relationships with suppliers.

September 7-9 Restaurant & Bar Hong Kong 2010 Hong Kong, China Asia Pacificâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s premier fine dining and bar trade exhibition, targeting the top end of the hospitality market. Organisers are predicting record attendance of more than 10,000 visitors.

September 2-5 Food & Drinks Asia 2010 Manila, Philippines


The 14th edition of this industry show will feature speciality foods, products, confectionery and beverages. It runs in conjunction with the franchise and business systems exposition Food Franchising 2010.

September 6-8 VIV China Beijing, China

September 14-17 World Food Moscow Moscow, Russia

An international platform covering the full spectrum of the meat supply chain, from animal production to processing.

The 19th edition of this international exhibition for food and drink products incorporates World Fruits Moscow, World Seafood Moscow, World Meat

Moscow and World Sweets Moscow, as well as sectors which are dedicated to a variety of aspects of the food industry such as beverages, dairy, health foods, catering and technology. BarExpo Russia runs simultaneously, offering business advice, tasting sessions, bar master classes, flairing shows and competitions. September 23-26 GIDA Istanbul, Turkey This is an international food fair targeting the industry and boasting more than 420 exhibitors, with more than 45,000 visitors expected.


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Caterer Middle East - Sept 2010  

Caterer Middle East - Sept 2010 - ITP Business