Fitting that FGA should get involved with restaurant designs, having done various apprenticeships in restaurant kitchens both front and back of house in university years. The bustling steaming kitchen on Christmas Day or the summer evenings in an Italian pizzeria serving the locals are formative experiences during the architectural training.
Learning from friend Claudio how to make the perfect pasta sauce to the back drop of Fats Domino are strong smells still in the memory. I still cook sauces as if to expectant customers, an approach to drawing work has some parallels in being able to move quickly from idea to line and develop the component parts as you go. The skill to be learned was transitioning from the frenetic cooking to pouring a glass at front of house.
In all kitchen and restaurant interiors, it never went unnoticed to the designers eye of the precision engineered surrounding of all essential ovens, counter tops and stainless steel caverns that we inhabited, with extractor hoods and interiors that needed to stand up to the intensive works that took place. More so now is theatre cooking making the kitchen part of the overall dining experience as the customer is given view into the creative industry.
Understanding restaurant and kitchen requirements in recent projects has put me back in the familiar environments but now with a pen in hand, and producing precision coordinated information as well as concepts for new restaurant projects for ambitious clients looking to expand their successful brands.
A conversation in the local restaurant watering hole in Liverpool with the owner who is on site with a new restaurant build project, highlighted issues that have arisen when a keen eye for detail is not employed when expensive equipment is being coordinated with incoming services against an opening deadline. Add recruitment, staff training, increase build costs due to round the clock construction shifts and its easy to see how it can strain on a new venture.
The attention to detail seems more prevalent with the tight tolerances required for the operating spaces for staff and the creative back of house, where every space is accounted and designer Adam D.Tihany credits this approach which has made him renowned for world famous restaurants and hotel interiors, ..’ My obsessive need to be involved with the smallest details of every one of my projects..’ reflects the essential involvement required to deliver the high performance arenas that will enhance the clients evolving business needs.
So let’s make time for lunch, enjoy pouring over the menu specification and taking time to celebrate new commissions, for now, this designer is required in the back of house before taking a seat out front.