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EXCLUSIVE Catering to Domino Printing Sciences

08 June 2015

Domino Printing Sciences, with a turnover of £350m, specialises in bar-coding and security labelling. Its catering is provided by Edwards & Blake, for the 500 office and manufacturing staff at the company’s Cambridge headquarters

The catering provision spans nine hours from 7am to 4pm to serve and support all staff and is spread across two outlets;  a smaller canteen seating 50 maximum and serving hot and cold snacks and a larger staff restaurant serving 100 – 200 staff for the morning shift and lunchtime.

With a varied number of requirements including shifts to serve, a broad range of dietary requirements, flexibility and cost certainty, Domino needed a company who understood their needs and specific requirements.

Step up Edwards and Blake, fast gaining a reputation not only for great food but unrivalled client collaboration and co-operation, at the right price. They were chosen as a result of a formal tender process. Steve Impey, Head of Facilities at Domino says “We were confident Edwards & Blake understood what we needed and had the right solutions when they pitched for the business. I knew we could work together productively.”   

A visit by the Edwards and Blake team to the current restaurant highlighted the need not only for a dramatic improvement in the quality and choice of food but also a complete restaurant refurbishment and refit. The current design was dated, did not deliver their employees quality food in a modern way and needed a transformation to reflect current service trends whilst adding ambience to the dining area. Domino were in full agreement and so the planning process began.    

The requirement was that staff had a comfortable and inviting environment in which to sit, socialise and eat. Additional servery and counter space would also be needed to provide a comprehensive choice of hot and cold food and drinks. Adrian Cooke, Sales and Operations Director at Edwards & Blake who managed the project says “We typically see an increase in uptake of 10%+ when we take over an outlet, we have achieved in excess of 20% here at Domino as a result of the investment and new food offering. Running the numbers I knew we needed to significantly increase the amount of display space to take the extra food required for all the new customers that would visit the restaurant when we opened.”  

Design ideas were submitted and reviewed by the Edwards & Blake team in tandem with Domino to achieve the optimum, client and customer-friendly solution. A new food theatre cookery-style food counter was introduced adjacent to a cold display and self-service salad  area to encourage healthier eating. The introduction of a boutique brand, self-service bean-to- cup area has added additional value.

As with all Edwards & Blake outlets the appearance of food displays was important and the utilitarian feel of the servery was offset by rustic touches including Le Creuset-style serving dishes, baskets and herbs. The new central wooden counter was painted in a distressed style and added to the rustic feel. “The importance of an attractive food display can’t be underestimated. Food is visual and we want people to enjoy being in our restaurants. We’re always looking at ways of enhancing the experience for our customers.” comments Adrian. 

The seating area was transformed by the removal of an internal wall creating space resulting in a more open plan feel to the restaurant whilst additionally creating for more tables and chairs (essential to accommodate the anticipated growth in sales). The seating area and serving area were re-painted and new furniture was installed. The feeling was airy, spacious, comfortable and welcoming and very on-trend

The menu reflects Edwards and Blake’s innovation with food and packaging across all shifts including breakfast. The choice at 7am breakfast includes a full English selection and Danish pastries followed by toasted sandwiches, yogurt, fresh fruit, porridge, sausage rolls, panini and homemade cakes from 8.30am-10.30am. Fresh fruit juices are also available.

Midday to 1.30pm is the lunchtime slot. Convenient pasta pots (carbonara with sage crumb topping as an example) sit alongside two to three freshly-cooked hot dishes both meat-based and vegetarian. Examples include chicken in white wine sauce, lasagne, lamb hotpot, vegetarian moussaka and Thai chicken lemongrass curry. The chef’s daily soup is served with an array of accompaniments to suit all tastes.  

A mouth-watering selection of cakes and desserts, freshly-cooked on-site, are laid out on the central counter alongside a broad drinks selection which includes drinks such as purple carrot juice (delicious by the way!). These are also available for the 3.30pm tea serving. 

The ‘Grab & Go Chiller’ offers a variety of pre-filled breads, salad boxes, fruit salads, yogurt pots, drinks and various healthy snacks. There is also a salad bar with freshly chopped salads, homemade slaws and carbohydrate-based salads accompanied by a variety of dressings.  

The changes in food and environment have increased uptake in the restaurant by over 20% and feedback from customers has been overwhelmingly positive.   

Vicki Sanderson, Group Human Resources Director of Domino sums it all up: “The quality of food is exceptional and the taste and presentation is first class. Our employees feel motivated and valued that Domino has taken the time to find a partner like Edwards and Blake to work with to provide this important employee benefit.  A world-class team in every respect!”

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