Support CIWYW's Pivot To Home Dining

by Call It What You Want in Cowes, England, United Kingdom

Support CIWYW's Pivot To Home Dining

£5,511

raised in 89 days

36

supporters

The iconic restaurant Call It What You Want in Cowes needs your help to last out the pandemic. Help us pivot to prepared food distribution.

by Call It What You Want in Cowes, England, United Kingdom

New stretch target

We're keen to build a network of distributors for all our foods - the stretch goal will equip us to do so.


Since first opening our doors back in 2019, Call It What You Want in Cowes has been known & loved not just for our acclaimed meal experiences, but for refusing to walk the path-most-travelled. Thankfully, this approach paid off and won many food fans in the process. We’re asking you to support us now - not with a handout but to help pivot the business so we can keep everyone employed and still be here after the plague.

The Road So Far

The ethos at CIWYW has always been about delivering big flavours and new experiences when it comes to creating dishes for the restaurant. That continued when the country went into a first lockdown, with weekly takeaway/delivery menus changed every single week. This allowed us not only to continue with staples from the bricks and mortar menu, but to experiment with new ideas and flavours that our customers welcomed with open arms. 

It was during the initial lockdown that we started to put together ready-made and chilled dishes for a bunch of regular customers who were requesting our food during the week, rather than just on the weekend nights we traditionally operated. We also put together our “Shorter Days” menu, which was to operate over the quieter winter months and see the introduction of our own original pies and pasties. 

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Then announcements in December 2020 of another national lockdown were made and alas this menu was not able to go live. 

But that was not going to stop us. We invested in a second premises to increase kitchen cooking capacity which in turn created three new job positions for young folk who had suddenly found themselves unemployed. We turned our attention to creating a ready-made and chilled food range that would be unlike anything else currently available in the market. 

Supermarkets increased their ready-meal ranges by over 40% since the first lockdown in March 2020 with the knowledge that a large percentage of the population would be staying home, working and homeschooling children for longer periods. The prospect of cooking two main meals a day was suddenly very real, so consumers looked for healthy, flavoursome, easy to cook dinners to fit in with lifestyles. 

Here at Call It What You Want we have always ensured that all of our food is prepared and cooked from scratch. We know what goes in and we know what comes out. It's all good.

This approach is now starting to resonate with customers not just on the Isle Of Wight but across the South Coast and London -- and we’re now getting enquiries from Europe as well. From a humble first offering, we’re now supplying a growing number of specialist food retailers and wholesalers, and we’re now seeing the first signs of demand increasing on a weekly basis. The need for further investment to cope with this growth is apparent and so we have decided to launch this crowdfunder. 

As most of you might expect, this will not be your traditional-styled crowdfunder (it is us after all) with amounts pledged being matched to certain rewards. Instead we have devised an alternative to ensure you as the pledger get what you most want.

The Plans

The money raised will be used to purchase essential equipment needed in the process of making our pies and pasties. This may include a semi-automated pie making machine, pastry rollers, specialist tins and packaging that will allow us to ship products securely nationwide. 

This shift in demand will also create new full time and part-time jobs for people of various skills, including chefs, digital creatives and delivery drivers with the engines of all these operations -- kitchen staff -- pulling it all together. We hope to add as many as 8 new positions.

As a restaurant (like all restaurants) the general consensus is that we will not be able to reopen until perhaps May 2021. The restaurant remains at the core of our business. It's the place we most enjoy doing what we do - cooking food, serving food (and of course the booze) and partaking in the many thousands of conversations that take place within those walls. We will not be changing this for anything; as soon as we can we will be reopening and picking it all up again where we left off. 

The ongoing development of our chilled and ready made meals will also continue once the restaurant reopens. It not only allows us to increase the lines of food we are able to offer both inside and outside of the restaurant, but it also creates valuable employment that is much needed in these times. The synergy between the restaurant and the chilled food business will allow us to remain flexible and adapt to whatever COVID throws at us next.

About The Rewards

  • Play It Forward:
    Choose this family of rewards if you want complete freedom to pick anything at all from our wares. Eat at the restaurant!  Order takeout!  Buy chilled meals to cook at home!  We will give you a "Square Gift Card" -- a pre-loaded credit account that works at check-out in both our restaurant and our online stores.
  • Let Us Do That For You:
    Our range of chilled foods has some staples -- the Louisiana Chowder, for example -- and constant new creations. We will deliver a package to you with a sample of these as described in the Reward. If you don't live on the Island or near one of our resellers, we'll be in touch to discuss delivery.
  • You Can Have Us To Yourselves
    Can't wait for the end of the plague? Neither can we. As soon as it's over, we'll be in touch to arrange a specially-designed event with you.
  • A 24 Month Love Affair
    Know you want us for ever? We will issue you with a Square gift code that will give you a discount on all purchases you make with us in the restaurant or online for as long as we still use Square or until the end of 2022, whichever is longer. Available in 5% or 10% flavours, usable for takeaway too.
  • Wholesale
    If you want to resell our products, these options are the fast track to starting, and include a 20% bonus in addition to trade pricing. We will contact you to discuss your needs. No need to start straight away either - we can wait until the end of lockdown if that works for you.

You can donate multiple times if you want multiple rewards.

Let's make 'Support CIWYW's Pivot To Home Dining' happen

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