Businesses in Kendal are taking part in #yourewelcomekendal, a campaign to promote all the fantastic cafes, restaurants, pubs, bars, producers and food retailers in the town.
We’ve been catching up with the people behind the businesses to find out why they love what they do.
Maxine Muir runs the Deli @ 95 on Highgate with help from her mum Pat. Maxine grew up in the UK before moving to South Africa as a child. She worked in the hotel trade in Johannesburg before coming back to the UK to work as director of people and talent for MacDonald Hotels and then starting her own business.
“I love travelling in Europe and one of the countries that I love the most is Italy,” says Maxine.
“Going to the delis in Italy really piqued my interest and I began thinking about how I could start my own selling local Cumbrian produce and also making sandwiches and coffee. I trained as a chef when I did my studies in South Africa, as well as running restaurants and hotels, and so that whole skillset is being put to use in this business.
“Having worked in hospitality all my life I’m passionate about quality and customer service. Every single person that walks into the shop needs to know that their business is valued and that what I will then create for them will be the very best product prepared extremely well.
“Because it’s our own business we don’t have any limitations with regards to how creative we can be. So my mum makes all of the soup recipes and we have different homemade soups every single day, which really go down well. One of the biggest draw cards for me is the bread that I use, which is from Lovingly Artisan. You are going to get a sandwich that is made on really good quality, artisan sourdough bread, which really makes all the difference.
“There’s two sections to the deli; there’s the takeaway section and then you’ve got the retail section and the seating area within the retail section. It works really well because when people are having something to eat they can take a look around the shelves.
“Ninety-five per cent of our products, if not more, are all locally sourced. I spent six months prior to opening the business really looking at all of the businesses in Cumbria and finding all of the different cheese suppliers and the jam suppliers. I spent a lot of time building up a portfolio of people that I would like to stock in the deli and of products that I think would interest both local and international visitors.
“We’ve got a lot of regular customers that come to the shop, which is nice because it builds a rapport within the community and I’m also getting to know the other business owners within the area. It’s been wonderful.
“It’s just lovely to be part of a community, working alongside people. I’m really good friends with the neighbouring businesses on either side and you greet all the shop owners as you’re on your way down the street, because you know them and they know you. That sense of community is wonderful.
“The way I would like to see the business expand is to do the grazing and charcuterie boards for people who have functions or want to have a dinner party at home. I’ve got a couple of requests for weddings as well as to do smaller functions. I would love to be able to see that side of the business expand.”
Check out the Deli @ 95 at www.thedeli95.co.uk
#yourewelcomekendal is being funded by the Government’s Welcome Back Fund. The Welcome Back Fund is funded by the European Regional Development Fund and HM Government as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020.
© Harry Atkinson 10/02/2022. The Deli@95, Kendal, Cumbria, UK.