Last week we hosted a hospitality industry lunch at our Hove restaurant with support from Pommery champagne. It was attended by owners, chefs and managers from across the spectrum of great Brighton food & drink establishments. In this blog, Cin Cin founder David Toscano shares his thoughts on the event and how the Brighton food scene can benefit from future meet-ups.
As always, it was a pleasure to catch up with colleagues in our industry. There’s a real collegiate network in the Brighton food scene and everyone always supports one another where they can. That said, I have felt that our industry could take a more structured approach to how we share our experience and knowledge so that we all benefit from it.
I recently attended a one day congress in London organised by Restaurant Magazine which tackled issues like mental health, food waste, sustainability, technology, staff retention and development. These are all issues that I am keen to see our local industry consider. So I asked two speakers to give a talk about their area of expertise to try to get the ball rolling and see if there is an appetite for a similar event, or at least a series of lunches where speakers can address issues we rarely have time to tackle alone.
First up we had Steve Ripley, a registered mental health nurse for NHS Sussex, who spoke about the signs and triggers for stress and anxiety at work and what we can do about it. The stigma of mental health seems to be finally falling away, although there is still a lot that needs to be done. I touched on this very poignant topic in a previous blog for Mental Health Awareness week, in which I discussed how it effects the hospitality section.
We then had Duncan Ray, chef patron at The Little Fish Market, talk about his time working with Heston Blumenthal at The Fat Duck when they were at the advent of molecular cooking. It was intriguing to hear how that all started out and I was proud to hear that ‘our Duncan’ was there at the genesis of these changes to how food was made and seen in Britain.
Overall, it was a fantastic lunch with lots of great feedback from our guests. It felt like we started that conversation about how we all improve what we do by pooling our experience and knowledge. Watch this space for the next instalment.