Stuff The Supermarkets encourages people to buy their home consumption drinks requirements from the pub – but now the company, with pubs in Newcastle, Durham, Gateshead, Huddersfield and Liverpool, is offering a range take-home meals. And, anyone who has eaten in the likes of The Cluny or the Central will know the quality and the value for money they represent.
Supermarkets have become very aggressive at trying to capture the “full meals to eat at home” market, offering deals such as starters, main courses, side dishes, desserts and a bottle of wine for £10 for two. This targets restaurants and pub meals directly, much as they have done with cut-price drinks promotions at levels many pubs can’t even buy them in for.
“Frankly, we’ve had enough of the supermarkets chomping away at our core drinks trade,” says Head of Steam group managing director Tony Brookes. “It’s time the pub trade fought back – and restaurants need to do the same. If things carry on the way they are, supermarkets will eventually supply everything anybody wants and all other shops and businesses may as well close down.
“Well, we just won’t lay down and take it – we’re fighting back. Our pubs have a good food trade – nearly all our food is prepared fresh in the pub and our customers love it, so what better way to give them what they like than to offer a menu to eat at home. If they can’t come out and eat in our pubs, or if they want to eat when our food service has finished, all they need to do is pick it up and reheat it at home.”
Cheers North East bumped into Alex Orme buying a Geordie Hot Pot to take home from the Cluny Kitchen at the Cluny in Ouseburn, Newcastle.
He says: “I enjoy eating at the Cluny – its food is excellent – and I think it’s a great idea to be able to buy their food at discounted prices to heat up at home. It’s time people looked to buy quality products from other local places they like, rather than automatically going to the supermarket.”
Dave Campbell, manager of The Central in Gateshead, believes that by buying ingredients from local suppliers as they do, customers will be supporting local food producers, which is an important consideration.
He says: “Our pubs’ portions tend to be bigger than you get in supermarket meal deals, too. You still feel hungry after you’ve had a supermarket meal deal – I know – I’ve tried them.”