We will be opening our first restaurant in Weymouth in May, I have secured the lease and have started on the internal works. I am doing all the work myself plus with the help of former members of staff and family. I have been a chef for almost 30 years, I formally ran a successful cafe in Dorchester called Jesters Cafe where we gained a few awards, but our lease ended and we saw a great opportunity in Weymouth where we live. After a few queries and negotiations with the landlord I managed to secure a rent reduction of £6k for the first year with small increments for the next 5 years. I have managed to buy equipment from a restaurant that closed a few years back which has saved me thousands. I have almost everything in place or on time, the only thing I need to do is to add the final touches to make the restaurant look fantastic and make customers want to come into the restaurant. We would like to replace all the lighting from flush lights to drop ceiling with a slight amber glow, there are several other things we want to do for the decor to create an ambience.
Our aim is to serve affordable fine dining without all the frills and pomp, we refuse to have tablecloths as I deem them an unnecessary expense and I would rather spend the cash on fantastic ingredients and wines.
So far with my initial chats with locals and fellow shop owners Weymouth is in for a bumper year and my restaurant location is like a bottleneck of three roads and the harbour bridge which is like a tourist attraction in itself.