Lee Smith launches Kickstarter to fund new venture, Lovage

Tanwen Dawn-Hiscox

Tanwen Dawn-Hiscox

Deputy Editor 11th February 2020

Lee Smith is planning to open a restaurant in Bakewell, Derbyshire, and to this end he has launched a Kickstarter campaign aiming to raise £30,000.

His Kickstarter page explains that while he has found the perfect location and venue, the project needs "a little help getting over the line."

"Whilst we have covered the cost of purchasing the existing business with hard-earned savings, the next challenge comes with a pricey start up fee to buy equipment and redecorate to reflect Lee’s style."

"Not only are we limited with our funds for the next step, but we will also be limited with time. Once we receive the keys it will be all hands on deck, with family and friends with an aim to open the doors in April 2020, just in time for Summer!"

The restaurant, it reads, will be unpretentious, offering "delicious and simple food without the fuss," utilising local produce and supporting surrounding business, "bringing together a community over the love for food. Our hope is to complete our team with local employees and fit out the restaurant with neighbourhood suppliers and craftspeople."

The chef, formerly of Samphire in St Helier, Jersey, took part in Great British Menu 2019 and led the Jersey college team through the Heat competition, before announcing his departure in June

He left with the sole intention of opening a restaurant closer to his Nottingham home. 

Contrary to the popular confusion about Kickstarter campaigns - with chef Gary Usher, who has raised record sums for several of his restaurants - all the money pledged is repayed in the form of rewards. 

Rewards at Lovage will include a set lunch for two, a ticket to attend a chef guest event with chef Paul Foster, chef Adam Reid or master sommelier Amar Boudjaoui, a day in the kitchen at the newly-launched restaurant, a home dining 5-course experience for 6 people and the exclusive use of Lovage restaurant for 30 people, including a 3 course meal for each guest. 

In these challenging times…

…the hospitality landscape has dramatically changed in the last two months, and with that our advertising revenues have all but expired, significantly impacting our business. Despite having to furlough a large portion of our staff, we are still delivering the valuable content and honest information, which hundreds of thousands of you come to The Staff Canteen for. We believe we have a critical role to play in informing and supporting our audience. We need your support right now, more than ever, to keep The Staff Canteen active. Without your financial contributions this would not be possible.

Over the last 12 years, The Staff Canteen has built what has become the go-to platform for chefs and hospitality professionals. As members and visitors, your daily support has made The Staff Canteen what it is today. Our features and videos from the world’s biggest name chefs, are something we are proud of. We have over 500,000 followers across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and other social channels, each connecting with chefs across the world. Our editorial and social media team are creating and delivering engaging content every day, to support you and the whole sector.

Your financial support means we remain independent and open to all. We were launched by a chef and remain the voice of chefs and other hospitality professionals.

We need your support to keep delivering the products and content that you love, giving you the platform to share opinions and inspiration. Every contribution whether big or small, means so much.
Support The Staff Canteen from as little as £1 today. Thank you

Tanwen Dawn-Hiscox

Tanwen Dawn-Hiscox

Deputy Editor 11th February 2020

Lee Smith launches Kickstarter to fund new venture, Lovage