Talking To: Bear Kitchen
Bear Kitchen doesn’t need an introduction. These legends on Westgate have been crowned the best takeaway in Yorkshire, their original brand of quality fast food a step above anything else you can find in Wakefield.
Tell us a bit about Bear Kitchen and how it started
After spending my entire carer as a chef, I felt that I wanted to open an awesome eatery delivering food that I would want to order myself. The idea was to create a takeaway delivering restaurant quality food while at the same time providing an ethically conscious ethos to business. Which, in my opinion, the hospitality industry is sorely lacking.
What made you set up in Wakefield, and why Westgate in particular?
We decided on Wakefield due to our belief that awesome food should be available in all places, not just city centres. We believed that Wakefield’s proximity to Leeds and its positive approach to re-establishing itself within Yorkshire as a vibrant, multi-cultural city.
Also, in terms of Westgate End, it was a main arterial route in and out of the City and previously the home of the infamous Westgate Run. All of these things together made it the ideal home for Bear Kitchen.
Bear Kitchen is unique on the Wakefield food scene - did you see a gap in the market?
Yes, we always believed that there was a gap in the market to create a takeaway that delivers restaurant quality food.
There's always something new and exciting on the Bear Kitchen menu - how do you develop menu ideas?
We research, use our chef’s experiences and also have a genuine passion for cooking and creativity.
You often partner with other local producers, like Crows Rest Bakery - how important is it to support local independent business?
We believe its essential for independent businesses to work together and support one another. Collaboration between independents is not only beneficial to each other but also key to a sustainable future.
How does the Wakefield food scene compare to bigger cities like Leeds and Sheffield?
Since we started over 3 years ago, we’ve seen a number of new businesses serving awesome food pop up. We believe it to be a positive move in reinventing Wakefield as not just a party town. In the last 20 years, we’ve seen Leeds and Sheffield step onto the stage with some of the best takeaway and eateries. We’d love for Wakefield to be able to join them in doing so.
How can independent restaurants and takeaways compete with chains and fast food outlets?
By offering creating, innovative, up to date and super fresh ingredients and ideas. Also, offering a more bespoke eating experience to customers, providing them with a different option.
How has Covid affected business and how have you adapted?
Due to Covid-19 we made the decision to provide our customers with takeaway options only. We have upgraded the dining area and turned it into an eco shop called U Radical. U Radical provides all environmentally friendly every day items, customers can now get these delivered alongside their Bear Kitchen food.
What's next for Bear Kitchen?
Bear Kitchen is looking forward to collaborating to some new and exciting takeaways, restaurants and concepts…. Watch this space!
Where can we buy your food?
We have our own app, the Bear Kitchen app. This is available to download from the apple and play store free of charge. Customers can also order through our website if using a PC.
Bear Kitchen Wakefield
81-91 Westgate End, Wakefield WF2 9RL