Moving places can be a really daunting experience – so we recorded a small Q & A for you guys to find out how the team are settling in at The Allotment on Lloyd Street in Manchester.
Q: “The Allotment looks amazing with the homely finishing touches complete. How does it feel to be settled in?”
M: “It’s really nice now. The aches and pains of owning a business just me and Siobhan are running has gone. We felt pretty overwhelmed in the first four weeks but with the help of Anthony I feel like I’ve got a normal job and it’s much easier to feel like it’s not all on us – a weight off our shoulders feels incredible.”
Q: “Have you faced any challenges settling in? How have you overcome them?”
M: Yes. When we moved into the kitchen it was too small. We had to completely knock down a wall to get the space we needed. We had this old, huge fridge that would’ve been perfect for us in the kitchen, but it sadly broke down – because of the size of the kitchen we can’t move it so now it just serves as a faithful storage unit!
We’ve also had a lot of chef’s struggle to commit to the dynamic menu or realising the constraints of plant-based cooking wasn’t for them, but that’s just made our team stronger and now we have the strongest kitchen team we could ask for! The biggest challenge is always staying focussed when you’re tired, it’s the work/life balance!
Q: “I know the menu is always fresh and really dynamic, is it difficult to refresh the menu every month and teach it to the chefs?”
M: “It is difficult sometimes especially when there’s 4 chefs to brief and balance your own life. It was harder in the early days because then we were still trying too many new things that I wasn’t even sure worked yet. After a couple of years of trial and error though we now we have chefs that know flavour combinations, they’re really independent and creative with the dishes and have a lot of freedom so they only need a little boost. There is no such thing as too many cooks!
Q: “Will you be running anything special for Christmas? What are your opening and closing Xmas hours and Days?”
M: We’re open on Christmas Eve when we’ll be serving our 6 course taster menus and taking last orders for bar food at 4pm. We’re closed Christmas Day and Boxing day then business as usual. We’re really looking forward to the festive period now we’re more settled in!
If you want to see how Matt, Siobhan and the team are getting on at their new The Allotment site on Lloyd Street then feel free to drop by for a coffee and say hello! The opening times can be found on our main Vegan Restaurant Manchester website