A new café in Knowle West is catering for people with different dietary needs and food intolerances in the local area.
Connoisseur Cuisine opened its doors on Melvin Square at the end of September – and has been developing a range of food alongside its usual menu to include those who have allergies to gluten or lactose or are vegetarian.
Owner Kevin Williams (47) is an experienced caterer who has been running food businesses most of his adult life – from catering for buffets and weddings to a trailer business and running the café at Inns Court until 2003.
He and partner Kerry Rees (36) have lived in Knowle West all their lives and have strong links to the local community.
He says: “The café is getting busy. We have a wide range of people coming in. We are trying to provide a service for dietary awareness. We did this when we had the food trailer and it was very popular, a quarter of our trade was vegetarian and gluten free food.
“At the moment in the café all rolls, wraps and bread we can have gluten free – as well as gluten free sausages so they can have a cooked breakfast, and lasagne and chow mein.
“In the summer we will also do gluten free quiches and desserts and will be changing the specials regularly…”
Kevin says he realised there was a need for this after lecturing at Somerset College of Arts and Technology in Taunton, teaching cooking and dietary awareness to 16-19 year-olds.
He explains: “I realised there are a lot of people with one or more intolerances and there aren’t a lot of places that cater for them. They mainly seem to be in Clifton or in town – they are not so much up on it in Knowle West…”
The name was chosen because they wanted something that was ‘memorable and reflected the quality of the food’, with local suppliers and organic veg which they grown on their allotment – used in the soups, stews and with the roast dinners.
Future plans include open air dining with tables at the front and back in the summer to running specialist cookery classes for adults and children in gluten free and vegetarian food.
Kevin says: “ We can also rent out for large parties and do lunches for small businesses. We are looking once a month to have meals for adults in the evening – so instead of going out for a meal they can have one in the local area and won’t have to drive. We’ll have themed nights like an Italian and will be open later until 10pm.”
Connoisseur Cuisine is at 5 Melvin Square and currently open from 7am to 4.30pm and will be open until 7.30 on usual nights in the summer.
For more information ring 0117 3292310/07886652044 or visit www.connoisseurcuisine.org