TV chef Jamie Oliver is leading the crusade for a tax on sugary drinks at the moment and his efforts have won the cause plenty of headlines already. But with healthy eating campaigns to keep him occupied, not to mention TV shows, cook books and charity endeavours, it’s easy to forget that he also oversees a successful restaurant empire. The 40-year-old’s ‘Jamie’s Italian’ chain has gone from strength to strength since it was founded in Oxford in 2008 and boasts a highly qualified operational team that ensures no detail is left untouched in the quest for restaurant excellence.
When Foodservice Equipment Journal announced the launch of its Power List and asked the industry to nominate true kitchen innovators, the company’s head of kitchen projects and restaurant maintenance, Matt Goodman, quickly received plaudits from the supply chain. Credited with adopting a diligent approach to kitchen planning and embracing energy efficient equipment, Matt has played a major part in shaping the structure of Jamie’s Italian’s kitchens since joining the chain two-and-a-half years ago from the distributor side of the market. His experience in food development and project management has been integral to the smooth roll-out of new kitchens and refurbishment schemes across the group. Today, Jamie’s Italian has grown to more than 40 restaurants worldwide and continues to scout locations where a gap exists for accessible, affordable and quality dining offering.
The company remains true to its values of creating authentic Italian dishes using tried and tested recipes, combined with current, innovative ideas and what it calls a “Jamie twist”. That is all made by possible by practically-designed kitchens and cutting-edge catering equipment, which inspires its chefs to deliver the best dishes possible. “As we grow, our menu and concept are constantly evolving with creativity, simplicity, great quality and genuine passion at the heart of everything we do,” the company states proudly on its website. That mantra undoubtedly applies to its kitchens, too.
“Our menu and concept are constantly evolving with creativity, simplicity, great quality and genuine passion at the heart of everything we do”