HEBRIDEAN FOOD COMPANY CROWD FUNDING CAMPAIGN

YOUNG FOOD ENTREPRENEUR DOUGLAS STEWART REACHES 70% OF TARGET IN UNDER A WEEK 

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    Hebridean Food Company founder Douglas Stewart on the Isle of North Uist

Hebridean Food Company founder Douglas Stewart on the Isle of North Uist

Young Scottish food entrepreneur Douglas Stewart (25) is raising capital through a crowd-funding campaign with Crowdcube to increase production capacity for his company’s range of fresh Scottish soups and sauces.

The Hebridean Food Company is seeking an investment of £60,000 in return for 9.46% equity in the business. Funds raised will also be invested in marketing and business development.

70% of the £60k investment has been raised with a single investment of £25k announced this morning. Douglas’s Crowdcube overfund limit is £150k, meaning the crowd-funding campaign can continue until the end date of 20th August or until £150k is raised. £150k investment equals 24% equity in the business.

Douglas commented: “I’m delighted we’ve raised over £42,000 since launching the campaign less than a week ago. If we reach an overfunded situation, we would be in a position to employ a more aggressive approach to our business and product development. With UK sales of fresh soups increasing, we spotted an opportunity to create a premium range of Scottish soups using quality ingredients with proper provenance. In addition to this, we have plans to target the health foods market by launching a range of fresh ready meals, as well as expanding our soup range to include health-focused varieties.”

Douglas, a lobster fisherman’s son from the Isle of North Uist, founded the company in 2014. His passion for Hebridean produce started at an early age when his weekends were spent on fishing boats and sorting lobsters. His passion now is to ensure everyone in the UK is able to enjoy a true taste of the Hebrides.

The Hebridean Food Company retails seafood, organic meat and organic lamb, all boasting Hebridean provenance, to consumers across the UK from their online shop. In 2015, the company began the development of a range of 12 soups and 4 sauces. These were launched in January this year. In the same month the company secured its first nationwide supermarket listing of Mussel Chowder with Aldi. Confident in the product, Aldi have agreed to a further two national listings this September. In addition, contracts for the soups have been secured with Selfridges, Whole Foods Market, Earthy food markets, House of Bruar and The Cress Company wholesale.  

Currently the company’s factory has capacity to produce 900,000 tubs of 400g soups per annum with a £1.62m turnover. Post-investment the company plans to expand their production capacity to produce £3m worth of products annually.

The Hebridean Food Company is working on product development with Colin Bussey, whose 35-year career in the food industry includes roles as executive chef at The Savoy and Gleneagles, operations director at P&C Morris and managing director of Simon Howie Foods.

The fresh soup market in the UK growing in value at 8.6% a year, and is worth £125m this financial year. 

View The Hebridean Food Company’s Crowdcube pitch here.

SECOND CHOP HOUSE AT NEW WAVERLEY

SECOND CHOP HOUSE SET TO OPEN ON EDINBURGH’S EAST MARKET STREET IN JULY

A second Chop House bar and butchery will open this July at the The Arches on East Market Street in Edinburgh’s Old Town. Operated by The Compass Group, the new Chop House site will be a continuation of the brand that successfully launched last September in Leith.Open 7 days a week, Chop House will bring its unique casual dining experience focused on steak and cocktails to the city centre. Chop House promotes a sharing culture of dining - serving large cuts of beef, sharing starters and innovative side dishes designed to be enjoyed by the table – making a trip to Chop House a sociable occasion.

The focus of the menu is British beef, butchered in-house then dry-aged for up to 90 days in an on-site specialist fridge before being cooked over an open-flame charcoal grill. Sociable dining is central to the brand’s ethos, with large sharing steaks such as chateaubriand, bone-in rib and porterhouse taking centre stage. These specialist cuts will be available in varying weights between 500g and 1.2kg and are designed to encourage a sharing experience around the table. Prime cuts such as fillet, sirloin and rump will also feature on the menu alongside dishes such as steak burgers, lobster and charred lamb chops. The sharing culture is encouraged across the menu allowing tables to create their own feast of dishes such as oysters, scallops and prawns to begin with, as well as a variety of sides to complement the main course offerings.

As well as the vibrant restaurant, the new Chop House boasts an impressive bar - a place to enjoy a pre or post dinner drink, or to spend an evening with friends sampling carefully-selected craft beers and bespoke seasonal cocktails.

The new venue is larger than the Leith original, laid out over 2 floors with an extensive bar area, located in a C-listed brickwork arch, originally constructed in 1875. The developers behind New Waverley have brought 19 historic arches back to life, creating a brand new retail and leisure destination for Edinburgh.

The Compass Group launched the Chop House brand in Leith last September, and this second opening in a destination development ensures the brand can be enjoyed by locals and visitors alike. As well as the growing Chop House brand the group also operates Edinburgh venues Montieths, Sygn and The WestRoom.

Managing Director Mark Fraser commented: “Soon after the successful launch of our first Chop House in Leith, we began searching for a second location. We were excited by the heritage and architecture of the Arches development and feel its location is ideal for our second Chop House.”

Award-winning design agency Four by Two have been commissioned to create a dynamic interior space including a custom-made steel staircase leading to a mezzanine level. Hanging booth seating, also custom-made from steel lending the restaurant a luxuriously modern feel whilst highlighting the architectural details of the original brickwork.

Operations and Development Manager Murray Ainslie commented: “The new Chop House is a continuation of the brand, but with its own identity. Great quality beef with fantastic provenance sits at the core of both offers.”

The second Chop House has a significantly larger bar area with great drinks central to the offer. Under the supervision of Chop House’s head mixologist, the bespoke cocktail list utilises seasonal ingredients and boutique spirits in a fresh and vibrant range of signature serves.

The Chop House Summer Ale is created at Drygate brewery in Glasgow with members of the bar team involved in the production from recipe to brewing. This unique product will sit alongside a large range of draught beer with a strong focus on Scottish producers. The extensive wine list is organised by country of origin and offers an exciting blend of old favourites and new trends. The bar will also offer a bar bites menu.  

Every weekend, Chop House will offer a brunch menu featuring steak and beef-dripping eggs alongside house-recipe Bloody Marys from 10am – 2pm.  Whilst on Sundays, the Chop House will celebrate roast beef, with a special menu offered throughout the day when diners can enjoy various cuts of beef with all the trimmings.  

A host of regular events and special offers will also be available including a ‘Corkage Club’ every Monday and Tuesday evening, when customers can bring their own wine at £5 corkage per bottle, as well as ‘Steak and Sides’ every Wednesday evening when diners can enjoy 2 rump steaks and 2 sides for £25. During the last week of every month, Chop House will host a complimentary wine tasting in the bar.

Chop House, East Market Street, Edinburgh EH8 8FS

www.chophousesteak.co.uk

Twitter: @chophousesteak | Facebook: Chop House | Instagram: @chophousesteak

OPENING TIMES: Monday-Friday: 12 noon– late | Saturday-Sunday: 10am – late

ORGANIC HEBRIDEAN BEEF AND LAMB LAUNCH

Our client the Hebridean Food Company launched a new range of organic beef and lamb today, complementing their existing seafood offerings. This incredible and unique-tasting organic Highland beef and Blackface lamb comes from some of the most remote pastures in the UK. From October to June the herds graze on species-rich machair grasslands and surrounding shoreline of seaweeds on an uninhabited island off the west coast of North Uist. From June to September they are moved back inland to graze on the sparse heather hills. And now it's available to everyone in the UK for the first time. Visit the online shop to view the various cuts.

NEIL FORBES STARS IN TV SHOW

Last night our client Neil Forbes, chef director of Edinburgh restaurant Cafe St Honoré, starred in a new half-hour show on STV - The Lost Supper

Neil Forbes takes BAFTA-wining actress Jayd Johnson (River City, The Field of Blood) on a culinary journey to rediscover her Lost Supper. Looking back at Jayd’s family history, Neil helps her to piece together two classic family recipes, each steeped in history. For a limited time, the programme is available to watch in full on the STV Player.

NEW EXEC CHEF AT GALVIN EDINBURGH

Former Brasserie de Luxe head chef Fraser Allan returns to head up the Brasserie and Pompadour at the Waldorf Astoria Edinburgh.

Fraser was instrumental in helping the Brasserie gain a Michelin Bib Gourmand in 2013, and is looking forward to heading up both kitchens in his new role. He'll mainly be at the helm of The Pompadour, which re-opens after a winter break this Thursday. Click here to read the full press release.

TASTE OF WALDORF IN THE TIMES

Our clients The Pompadour by Galvin and Galvin Brasserie de Luxe received some great coverage this week in The Times.

Since 1931, Waldorf Astoria has been the birthplace of iconic culinary creations, from Eggs Benedict and the classic Waldorf Salad to Thousand Island Dressing and Red Velvet Cake. To celebrate this prestigious gastronomic legacy, they've teamed up with the illustrious James Beard Foundation to find the next Taste of Waldorf Astoria.

US chef Cara Stadler visited Edinburgh to develop a dish with the Galvin brothers and Craig Sandle. The result is a sophisticated Scotch egg made with a duck's egg and venison. 

The dish will be presented to a panel of culinary luminaries along with other entries from Berlin, Rome, Shanghai and La Quinta at Waldorf Astoria New York in February. The Taste that prevails will feature on menus at 29 Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts worldwide.