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Caribbean restaurant chain to open two new sites by 2017

MOUTHWATERING: A main course at Sugar Dumplin

A FAST-growing Caribbean restaurant chain in the UK is set to open two new sites before spring of 2017.

Sugar Dumplin, the brain child of entrepreneurs Norris Panton and Craig Ince, was launched in early 2015 and has already been established in three locations – Glasgow, Scotland, Camberley, Surrey and Kingston, Richmond.

The two new locations will open in Wembley, north London, in November and Leeds by early next year.

Co-founder and operations director Norris Panton, is excited about the expansion of the chain.

He said: “In 2015, trade research found Caribbean food was in high demand but under-represented on the UK restaurant scene, we wanted to change that. We want to make it available to all, at a reasonable price."

Panton, who was born in Manchester of Jamaican parents, added: “Inspired by our heritage, love of food and good times we have tried to bring the essence of the Caribbean to the UK, creating an honest menu that stays close to our roots. Each restaurant has captured something unique from the history of Caribbean. We’re all about making customers feel special, just like they do when they holiday in the Caribbean’’.

DREAMY DRINK: A cocktail on sale at Sugar Dumplin

Sugar Dumplin was launched to make fresh Caribbean food accessible to everyone, with all outlets located in shopping malls which have large footfall.

The first was launched in Glasgow in Princes Square, followed by the second at The Atrium in Camberley.

The third and latest outlet opened its doors in July at The Rotunda in Kingston and seats 60

The fourth will be in the London Designer Outlet in Wembley, near to Wembley Stadium and will seat 100, while the final venue will be a kiosk within Leeds Trinity Kitchen.

EXPANDING: Norris Panton

Speaking about the Wembley launch, Norris said this will be the chain’s flag ship restaurant: “Wembley will be the largest of our restaurants and we will be the only one in that location serving Caribbean food. It is also ideally located close to such an iconic venue which hosts a number of entertainment and sporting events so we expect the traffic to be good and local residents will also be our prime clientele.”

Each new restaurant follows the Caribbean Rum Shack theme with candle-lit beach huts, a feeling of being transported to sandy shores, cocktail in hand, enjoying live music.

Sugar Dumplin have been testing the concept in central London, taking up a pop-up residency within the Mewe360 business Incubator at 2 Soho Square. They are also the sole food operator for London Beach Rugby in the city.

TASTY: Barbeque prawn salad on the menu at Sugar Dumplin

Panton has been in the leisure and hospitality business for a number of years and was involved with various night club and champagne bar launches.

His most notable was the 360Bars concept, which he helped to open four sites in some of the UK’s popular shopping malls. From Gateshead to Manchester to Essex the brand is exposed to millions of shoppers per year. He later rebranded it into the successful and growing affordable champagne concept ‘Oh, You Pretty Things’.

However, the launch of Sugar Dumplin is where he feels his Jamaican heritage has really come to the fore as it will be a Caribbean BBQ and bar experience with authentic family recipes.

He said: “This is a business that’s close to my heart. It has a good party vibe and we are cooking recipes that come from back home in the Caribbean. We are cooking everything from fresh so we are not cutting corners. There is an authenticity and realness with our food, it will taste like what your mom, aunt or granny cooks for you back home. Coming to Sugar Dumplin will feel like you are coming to the best party in town.”

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