This Sunday just gone (19th December 2010) I managed to squeeze enough time to put the finishing touches to the first launch of

Jason, the owner is very open to ideas and we had a good amount of fun and brainstorming during this project. The design went through a couple of iterations but generally it was a fairly painless process. Jason found me through the site I did for which is up there in my list of café’s that I’d bring a friend to and happily sit there drinking some coffee and grabbing a very good sandwich. They both have a deep respect for the finer things in life, and a bit of a no expenses spared to get you the best kind of attitude.. something that’s welcome in the sea of pret’s and subways that make up a fair amount of my “I’m too busy to cook” moments.

In the making of the site, I did a photo shoot of food using 2 cameras, one static to capture the same angle to keep consistency (for the sliding plates, cups and fruit), and one handheld with a macro lens to get some more dynamic shots food gallery
(in the gallery)

Fitting the lighting into the working kitchen turned out to be quite a challenge, but for proof of concept everything was great. It just meant more work in post, getting photoshop to remove colour casts from the mix of studio flash and fluorescent overheads. The new kitchen should have more room for future shots.

The fruit photos were shot on a different day at my studio, thanks to the magic of Ben sending me away with 3 massive bags of fruit, since of course there wasn’t really the need for a chef to prepare things for me. Watching Stuart (the chef) making these amazing looking dishes out of what is essentially very simple but high quality ingredients was hugely interesting.. not least when I made several attempts at making my own versions of these at home and failed so miserably that I gained extra respect for him, which he seriously deserves. It’s not that I’m a terrible cook but in the presence of a professional, i know my limits.. still, lets see him build a website! (just kidding Stuart!)

The daily specials are powered by twitter, and some workarounds to stop any FOUC with the javascript loading in too slow or cufon taking it’s time; came the day after the launch. I think the end result is much better for the few lines of code I added. our chicken

The chicken that you will see to the bottom right of the site is a character that I came up with after a good hundred or so scribblings, (s)he was the best in our opinion.. but she doesn’t have a name.. this is something we’re working on and there’s even talk of a ‘name the chicken’ competition! Stay tuned.. and seriously .. not that I’m shilling for these guys, but the breakfasts are really good.. I managed to taste a bunch of things that I was photographing and my favourite would have to be the sweetcorn fritters with streaky bacon (the one I tried and failed horribly to replicate). I’m looking forward to going back!

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