Sustain-Able 余 : ♥ www.CeciliaYu.com

….wild is the wind…creative freedom is the seed….

“The Super Club” A very 2011 kind of Sustainable Social Enterprise

During Good Friday, we decided to avoid the holiday rush by hanging out in our own local park and local eateries.

With Easter & the Royal wedding coming up, travelling anywhere would be Pandemonium!

We discovered the most wonderful “Supper Club”…created by  a local Pastiserie that won the UK National Cupcake  Competition in 2010. It is a tiny little shop front with only  four tables and lots of wonderful Pastische French touches.

The Prize-Winning Cupcake recipe is only produced  Once-a-week, so it is in such a great demand that locals would  telephone the small Pastisserie to reserve their cupcakes in  the morning and pick it up on their way home from work!

It is refreshing to see a Bakery that is founded on really  intelligent recipes, good ingredients, reasonable prices while  providing a personal touch, away from the Generic globalised  chain stores like Patisserie Valerie that are found all over the  UK.

The Super Club only serves 4 tables each night from  Tuesday-Friday and provided a wonderfully intimate setting.

   The recipes were very rustic  French, even with a touch of 50s  Pastiche to the decor, it was  sourced from local fresh  ingredients and cooked with a  focus on flavours and simplicity.  It was Delicious!

In such a small place,  4 local  youths are trained in traditional  baking & french cooking skills as  well as giving them real French service  training. This was a far cry from many UK chained food service industry where often the food are pre-prepared then heated up, staff are not given real training nor do they possess any real on-the-job skills but are hired on-the- cheap, the venues deliberately kept short-staffed  so that customers are left with a feeling  like one amongst a million. The dining experience from many UK franchiased eateries are as “processed” as the food served !

At the Super Club, the freshly baked bread served with each course was wonderful and gave the whole place a warm & welcoming aroma as soon as you enter the tiny store.

The Rustic nature of the “Super  Club” speaks for itself.  We felt  more like we were sitting in a small french parlour rather than a  restaurant. I loved this “Get back  to unpretentious basic” style of relaxed dining!

Because the core business is a Patisserie, there is a B.Y.O policy, bring your own wine or alcohol, there was no up-selling in the style that we are bombarded with in many large reataurants! Many staff at many large chain resturants and pubs are taught or even given commissions to up-sell basic items like bread or drinks, during UK’s economic recession. It was refreshing to be served in a natural but professionally trained way.

We loved the Sustainable element of this small Patisserie business. It is not focussed merely on  Profit or Growth. There is an understated economy to the way cakes and food are tailor-made,  so there is no wastage. Customer’s expectations are surpassed because people are not expecting  the high level of quality provided by such a small place (since many of us, have been taught by chain  pubs and restaurants to expect less and less ..)

The fact that there is the focus of the UK no.1 award winning cupcake is a marketing device in itself. But I think another aspects to the success of this small social enterprise can simply be put in the category of  “High Quality unpretentious French rustic dining at a realistic price with a touch of the Bohemian” (if such a category even exist officially! ).

**** I could tell you where this place is, but I think it would be more fun if you went out to your own  local area and look for “REALLY Sustainable” businesses like this one to support! I am sure  there is something like that near you. We just have to change our idea of what makes a  restaurant successful and go back to the “pleasure of enjoying one another’s talents & skills”  instead of being told what “our pleasures should be” by multi-million marketing campaigns selling generic food, service and dis-Solutions to the world! 

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