Macknade Fine Foods to open second site in Ashford
Macknade Fine Foods has bought a second site in the Kentish town of Ashford as the South East business celebrated its 40thanniversary.
The retailer announced the acquisition during its 40thbirthday celebrations which included an event at Macknade’s flagship Faversham site. It plans to transform the 5,136 sq ft space in Ashford’s Elwick Place it into an all-day dining experience with groceries and delicatessen counters.
Managing director Stefano Cuomo said the new food & drink hub will be able to accommodate between 100-120 people with individual and communal tables, allowing customers to engage with each other in an informal space.
“We have a really strong spirit of family and community at Macknade, so this will be reflected in our new space,” said Cuomo. “As well as shoppers and diners, we will welcome business meetings, specialist tastings, birthday parties and music nights.”
He added the plan is to provide a “morning-to-evening offering” in a bid to create “the same ‘favourite place’ feeling” that’s amongst customers in its Faversham food hall.
The new menu will consist of freshly prepared breakfasts and locally-sourced salads, sandwiches, vegetables, delicatessen platters and meat dishes as well as vegetarian and vegan options, fresh coffee and home-baked cakes.
There are also plans for a bar stocked with local beers, ciders, wines and spirits, with mixologists on-hand to create cocktails for visitors.
The Ashford Macknade outlet will be supported by the Faversham management team as the business looks to employ a further 6-12 people from the local community and grow the team from there.
“We’ve seen a real increase in the number of consumers choosing to shop locally and engage with independent businesses,” said Cuomo. “Customers no longer want to shop and dine solely at supermarkets and chain formats.”
“People want to know where their food comes from and that the business they are spending with are sustainable,” he added. “This ethos has been supported throughout the county by organisations like Visit Kent and Produced in Kent.”