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Highlights From Casual Dining 2019
Team Offbeat | 12 Mar

The Offbeat team visited Casual Dining to check out the latest and most innovative products, equipment and trends emerging in the casual dining sector.

The keynote program included a range of industry leaders sharing insight into the industry. From Dishoom’s, Shamil Thakrar, sharing his vision for Irani style cafés to menu innovation with Wagamama’s, Steven Mangleshot, we gained some useful insights. Here are two of the highlights:

Nisha Katona, CEO of Mowgli

We attended an insightful interview with Nisha Katona, gaining inside information into her successful restaurant chain, Mowgli. From her background as a full-time Barrister to her dream of opening her own eatery, Nisha shared some top tips that have helped her along the way. Based on a simple and humble concept, Mowgli seeks to serve the kind of food Indians like to eat at home and on their streets. She explains, the reason it is so successful is that she set out to open an honest eatery that she, herself, would like to eat in.

Since receiving an MBE in 2019 for services to the food industry, Nisha plans to keep growing her business whilst also writing, teaching, critiquing and generally obsessing about food. Considering current political and economic uncertainties, Nisha certainly is an inspiration within the casual dining sector. With such rave reviews, Mowgli is well worth the visit.

Kate Nicholls, CEO of UKHospitality

On a deeper note, we attended a talk with Kate Nicholls from UKHospitality, giving insight into the potential effects of Brexit on the hospitality industry. Representing the broad hospitality sector, UKHospitality seeks to unlock the industry’s full potential by engaging with the government, the media, employees and customers. Kate explained that given the uncertainty that surrounds the UK’s exit from the EU, food costs, tax burdens and labour shortages are real concerns within the sector. Despite these ongoing worries, Kate is in ongoing discussions with Michael Gove to help raise concerns and demands within the industry.

With new challenges set by the political climate, 2019 is set to be an interesting year! Be sure to stay up-to-date with current industry news to stay ahead of your competition.

By Charlotte Phillips

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