A BLACKPOOL restaurant business is planning to open a new premises after a successful year.
Toast, the cafe bar and grill, is poised to open a new venue on the Fylde which could create up to 50 full time and part time jobs.
It already provides work for 30 people at its restaurant in Corporation Street, Blackpool, but boss Mel Browitt said they are now looking for suitable premises.
The business has more than doubled its expected turnover to £1m and has provided catering for prestigious events such as the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing at the Tower Ballroom.
It has also won Taste Lancashire’s highest quality assured award for its food.
Mel Browitt said: “We are seriously looking for the right premises now within the Fylde coast area. We are not doing badly considering we are still in a recession.”
He said they had the Toast idea back in 2007 when he realised there was no good quality middle range restaurant venue in Blackpool. He said: “The town did not have a better quality dining experience. I , like many other people, had to go out of town for that. We saw the gap in the market.”
He said their business model was to provide a classy venue with modern lunch café menu by day and an exclusive á la carte menu in the evening.
He added: “The award from Taste Lancashire is the equivalent of a fine dining award. We did not set out to be a fine dining establishment, we wanted to broaden the target audience.
“With quality produce and service we have attracted that audience, it is what people want.”
Toast has entered the Local Business Accelerators awards and Mr Browitt said the chance to get mentoring from TV dragon Deborah Meaden would greatly help their expansion plans.
The Local Business Accelerators initiative aims to highlight the best fledgling businesses and offer mentoring plus valuable press advertising.
And BT has come on board to offer free business broadband and wifi access for a year, and the design and management of a website with ecommerce if required, to the overall winner.
Tomorrow is the last day for firms who wish to enter the LBA competition. Simply go online at www.accelerateme.co.uk and fill in the form.
At the end of November, a shortlist of local finalists will be selected. The most promising business will go forward to the national stage of the competition to win a year’s mentoring from TV dragon Deborah Meaden.