Interview with Kate Alleston, Neil Mannifield and chef Ian Atkinson of Market Restaurant and Bar

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What is the Market concept?
Kate: There are three elements that make a great restaurant: great food, wine and ambience. We have a passion for all things Sussex and Spanish hence why Market is an Anglo-Spanish restaurant. We’re frequently asked what the Spanish connection is, and that’s largely me as thanks to my Spanish teaching mother, from a young age I spent my holidays in Spain, peaking over spit and sawdust tapas bars, sampling the local tapa. I found the love for this style of eating and hope to pass this passion on through Market.
Manni and I have both lived in Sussex for over 20 years and love the county. Its produce is incredible so the food you’ll largely find at Market, and many of the wines, are from our fabulous local producers.

What kind of clientele are you seeing?
Manni: Our clientele is many and varied and surprisingly of all ages, as with the mainly countertop dining style we thought we’d see a largely young demographic but everyone seems to enjoy what we’re doing here. We have many regulars and many foodies dining but mainly people who are open to trying our original take on tapas. No ‘patatas bravas’ here!!

You’ve consistently been a big champion of Sussex food and drink producers, how do you choose them and what are the benefits of working with them?
Kate: The produce of this wonderful county is superb. But it’s not just this. The service that you receive when you build a relationship with your local supplier is paramount, many of which we’ve met through the Brighton & Hove Food and Drink Festival trade events.

Ian, you’ve recently joined Market as head chef, where did you work previously?
Ian: I’ve been cheffing for 24 years all over the world. I’ve worked in and run many Michelin starred and Hatted restaurants in Australia including Ramsey Restaurants, Nahm, Universal in Sydney, Benares and The Lonsdale.

Have you completely redesigned the menu or are you slowly adding your touch?
Ian: The latter, as I joined Kate and Manni just before Christmas. I’ll be launching my new menu early January, working closely with Manni. The menu will be the same format but I’ll be adding some modern techniques and a few signature dishes from my travels in Spain.

How are you finding the wider Brighton food scene? Any other restaurants you’ve enjoyed?
Ian: In the last few years the Brighton food scene has hugely changed for the better and there’s some really exciting restaurants to enjoy. A few favourites are The Chilli Pickle, 64 Degrees and Senor Buddha.

What can we look forward to at Market in 2018?
Manni: Firstly the launch of our new menu and Ian becoming an official partner of the business. The launch of our revamped private and group dining room, Downmarket. Possibly a second site and we’ve got some fun ideas for some events including Brighton Wine Week in April that we hope you’ll come and enjoy with us.

Market Restaurant & Bar, 42 Western Road, Hove BN3 1JD • 01273 823 707 • www.market-restaurantbar.co.uk

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