Downturn brings tapas to Huntingdonshire

RECESSION-driven changes to people’s eating-out habits have given Huntingdonshire its own Mediterranean and tapas menus.

The move, by the award-winning Cambridge Golf and Conference Centre at Hemingford Abbots, was prompted by the fall-off in the number of restaurant customers.

“Fine dining has been having a hard time during the recession,” said managing director Peter Durham. “The frequency of customers’ visits has dropped dramatically, and we wanted to find a formula that would encourage them to eat out more often.

“We highlighted Mediterranean and tapas as something different and not offered anywhere else in the area. And the ambiance will reflect the new style.”

The new menus, in what is to become the Abbots Brasserie, begin on Friday, February 4. Tapas will also feature on the bar menu.

“There will be lots of deals and offers for people to take advantage of, starting with a voucher for �10 off when you spent �30 on food. Customers can pick up a voucher here or download it from the website,” Mr Durham said.

The brasserie will be open Thursday to Saturday, with the popular roast lunch remaining on the menu on Sundays. The bar menu is available all week.

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Mr Durham is also seeking to maximise the use of the catering facilities by offering breakfast every day and brunch on Sundays.

“It has been really hard since 2009. People are still coming for dinner, but much less often. We have had to reflect that in the price and style to get them to come out at least once or twice a month instead of every few months.”