Hideaway heats up Burlington Arcade
Stylish pop-up café has been making waves in the heart of London
Burlington Arcade in Piccadilly has been one of London’s most exclusive shopping destinations for over two centuries, with some of the world’s most prestigious brands making their home there. For winter 2018, the managers reached out to acclaimed chef Ollie Dabbous of Hide, the Michelin star restaurant that opened in London that year, to host a pop up café in one of the arcade’s shops.
“Our aim with Hideaway was to take the fun and independent spirit of Hide and apply it to a café,” says Ollie. “We wanted to create something a little bit special, a place where you could go for a treat and take a break from the Christmas shopping – anything from coffee and croissants to champagne and oysters!”
Inspired by the classic French Viennoiserie, Hideaway served a range of handmade cakes and pastries. With space limited, Ollie knew Hideaway would need modern, efficient equipment. “No matter what you’re setting up, it demands a lot of energy from you – but the tight schedule we had in order to get it open by mid-November added extra complications. We got it done, but not without a lot of work!
“In terms of choosing equipment, we knew we needed fast equipment, but due to the limitations of the space we needed it to be self-contained,” says Ollie. “We couldn’t have anything that required extraction.”
After his positive experience of using equipment from Taylor UK at Hide, Ollie knew exactly where to go for equipment for the new venture. “The customer service and support from Taylor UK are second to none,” he says.
Taylor UK provided a TurboChef Sota rapid cook oven to cover Hideaway’s hot food needs. A combination impingement and microwave oven, it enables precise and rapid cooking of a range of foods, and is an entirely self-contained unit able to be sited on standard work counters.
“The Sota is fantastic,” says Ollie. “It does everything we need, and so quickly. Just push the button and a few seconds later, the product is perfectly prepared. For example, the Croque Monsieur has just the right amount of crunch on the outside while the interior is warmed through.”
Another big selling point was how Taylor UK consults with clients to decide how they use the equipment and so can pre-program it before it arrives on site. “Only having two weeks to get Hideaway up and running, you want to avoid doing extra work while you’re trying to get everything in,” says Ollie. “Having the Sota all ready to go before installation helped us immensely, we were able to just plug and play!”
In locations like this, where equipment needs to be public facing, it’s the details that count. “The TurboChef doesn’t emit much heat, which makes it nicer for both staff and customers. We also chose a unit with a rather nice matt paint finish,” Ollie explains. “It’s much more stylish and discreet than the standard stainless steel a lot of commercial equipment uses, much more suitable for the vibe we were going for.”
Hideaway has made quite an impression on its customers, and the Burlington Arcade too. “The feedback we’ve had from our customers has been really special,” says Ollie. “We wanted to create something a bit different, and everyone seems to agree. In fact our lease was extended until the spring, which makes Hideaway an official part of the Arcade’s 200th anniversary.
“And Taylor UK have been really helpful throughout the process. If you’ve got a project and not much time to get it up and running, everyone there goes out of their way to ensure that it goes smoothly.”