Tag Archives: #Food

Professional Liverpool – Networking Evening with Tomas Maunier

Last Wednesday, I had the pleasure of attending a networking evening, organised by Professional Liverpool and featuring Tomas Maunier from Fazenda Group. Having previously listened to Tomas speak about Fazenda, it was a pleasure to once again hear him speak about the founding, growth and success of the business.

With an excellent turnout, canapés and networking at the Cotton Exchange, the event began with a warm introduction from John Hall, the Chief Executive of Professional Liverpool. As Tomas took to the stage, a hearty applause marked the beginning of an experience, where I once again listened to Tomas’s personal journey, from his law beginnings, to moving into the hospitality industry in 2010. Listening to Tomas again, I was not to be disappointed, as I absorbed his every word from start to finish.

There was plenty that Tomas covered. From his beginnings as a solicitor, getting involved with marketing and hospitality, to explaining about the importance of having the right people, which was a reoccurring theme. In addition, Tomas also talked about the difficult challenges and setbacks, that had to be overcome, for Fazenda to be successful. An example is that working in hospitality, means the environment is incredibly fast-paced, frantic and constantly demanding, leaving minimal opportunity to stop and reflect. This means surrounding oneself with the right people is important.

Thinking about Tomas’s Fazenda journey, I found it to be an interesting insight into how the hospitality industry works. With so many restaurants competing for trade in Liverpool and other UK cities, customers have so much choice and different tastes, meaning that establishments need to provide the best possible dining experiences. Another aspect to consider is that trends will change as money gets tighter, leading to the dining out bubble bursting. Therefore restaurants will need to innovate and adapt to change, or fall by the wayside.

In conclusion, I would like to thank Alex Clark and Rosie Davis from Professional Liverpool, for putting together a fine evening of networking. I would also like to once again thank Tomas for sharing his incredible story, and providing a glimpse into the blood, sweat and tears required, to be successful in business.

Certainly provided me with food for thought!

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Weightmans Wednesday – Mowgli Street Food

Whenever I receive an invitation to a Weightmans event, I always look forward to not only networking, but also listening to the stories of others. I see these as opportunities to learn from speakers and fellow attendees, where personal stories are told, rich in heartfelt tone, humour and experience, lifting the human soul and encouraging a belief that anything is possible. A recent example is my experience of last week’s Weightmans Wednesday event, where I had the pleasure of listening to the excellent Nisha Katona of Mowgli Street Food.

Along with her success as a restaurateur and curry evangelist, Nisha has also written two books called “Pimp my Rice” and “The Spice Tree”, along with writing for newspapers such as the Independent and Telegraph. In addition, Nisha has also appeared on television, and you can also find her on Twitter and YouTube.

The audience and I were wowed by her personal journey, from her beginnings as a barrister for 20 years, to founding Mowgli in 2014, along with its subsequent and successful growth. Nisha also spoke about building Mowgli’s success through the back of social media, in addition to helping others. This included sourcing local suppliers, and working as part of a close-knit and supportive community of residents, fellow restaurant owners and small businesses. Located in the unique and eclectic surroundings of Bold Street, Mowgli is one of Liverpool’s popular dining establishments.

Listening to Nisha, I picked up on her passion for homemade Indian cuisine, and of the pride in her work.  To be successful involves taking risks, thus requiring faith and confidence in yourself and your abilities. Other useful points that I picked up, were the importance of integrity, knowing your strengths, surrounding yourself with good people to delegate, as well as remaining true to yourself and your brand. A final and most important characteristic is the ability to tackle and survive setbacks.

My thanks go to everyone at Weightmans for organising a fine evening. I would also like to personally thank Nisha for sharing her heartfelt story. It was not only inspirational, but also powerful, and her eloquently chosen words contributed to lifting the evening, into the realms of unforgettableness. For me this was one on my favourite ever Weightmans Wednesday events.

To conclude, Nisha’s success shows that you can follow your heart, and pursue your passion for something that is a labour of love.

Weightmans Wednesday – Fazenda Group

Liverpool is blessed to have so many fine restaurants. From the likes of Panoramic 34, Old Blind School, Sapporo, Mayur, District House and others, there are many terrific restaurants that provide quality cuisine, catering for all tastes and palates.

At last month’s Weightmans Wednesday event, I listened to a very interesting talk given by Tomas Maunier from Fazenda Group. The purpose was to deliver an insight into the running and development of Fazenda. Located in the fine surroundings of Exchange Flags, Fazenda has grown to be one of the best dining establishments in Liverpool, and is very popular within the city’s Commercial District. As a result, I was extremely keen to listen to Tomas’s story.20161026_204023

Tomas covered his early background in law, before moving into marketing and his current work with Fazenda. Listening to him, I learned it is important to understand people, as this is how business is done. In addition, I picked up other useful points related to branding and customer service, which I have included below.

  1. Focus on providing a quality experience for customers.
  2. Do what you do with passion and love!
  3. Service begins at home!
  4. Concentrate on making a premium brand and dream ways to expand it.
  5. Explain to the customer about what you are doing.
  6. People do not accept change easily!

With these events, usually I listen to speakers talk about their successes, but rarely their mistakes. Tomas was different in that he opened up about past errors made, which was refreshing to hear. It is very rare for a speaker to open up and honestly mention what they could have done better previously, so I applaud Tomas for having the courage to do this. Sometimes we need to remember, that we are human beings who are not perfect, and that mistakes are opportunities for us to learn from.

My experience of the event was very positive. Tomas was a fine speaker, as he spoke sincerely and with passion for his work. From his early background in law, to getting into the hospitality industry, I was fascinated by his story, and of how Fazenda has grown as a restaurant. I hope to try their cuisine very soon!

In conclusion, I would like to thank Tomas and everyone involved at Weightmans, for an excellent evening of conversation and networking.