Truro and Penwith’s restaurant, Senara, has committed to stop using single-use plastic straws as part of The Final Straw Cornwall!
“We are a training restaurant (Senara), a service kitchen and a skills training kitchen. The restaurant is supplied with fresh produce from a large adjacent allotment, owned by the College but managed in partnership by the neighbouring school, and a polytunnel used by our Foundation Studies learners.
Senara is open every weekday from 10am-2pm for coffee, tea, cakes and pastries; and for lunch service 12am-2pm. The menu offers 3 choices of starter, mains and dessert and changes every day to maximise use of stock, supplier availability, seasonality and the planned schemes of work. A take-away menu is available every day. Senara is also open every Friday evening from 6.30-11pm. Because of our hard won reputation, Senara is very busy all week and Friday evenings are typically booked up several months in advance. We have a mailing list of 300 regular diners and speciality evenings, pop-ups and Saturday brunches will typically sell out within an hour of an e-mailshot.”
“Senara restaurant service runs from the last week of September (even for first year learners) to the first week of July. All learners do at least one full day kitchen service per week including preparation, cooking, service and cleaning. They also do one front of house service each week including taking and managing bookings, table set up, menu briefing, taking orders and food and beverage service. Learners are rotated around different areas to meet their learning needs and are encouraged to contribute to decision making e.g. adaptations to the menu and additional flavourings. Through the academic year, the groups can become quite mixed involving different levels and mixing apprentices and full-time learners, which reflects the nature of real kitchen brigades. It also offers the opportunity to give additional responsibilities to learners such as managing the pass in the kitchen and acting as maître d’ in the restaurant.
We decided to get on board for a number of reasons. Our young learners are massively concerned about the planet they have inherited. They are more environmentally responsible than previous generations and are witnessing the effects of irresponsible treatment of our planet. When we started the take away options, I decided we would only use paper cups (we use the incredible Yallah Coffee), biodegradable take away containers and biodegradable or wooden cutlery. The response from the student customer has been phenomenal. They actually choose to purchase our food (not only because it’s amazing), but also because we do not use polystyrene or plastic, we recycle our bar milk into ricotta to use in the kitchen and only use milk from dairy farms that are kind to their cows and are grass fed. Our produce comes with a story and a social conscience.”