New restaurant ready whenever lockdown restrictions are lifted

A NEW restaurant had a one-night opening before COVID-19 restrictions were increased in Woking, closing hospitality venues – but is ready and waiting to reopen when it can.

Woking Mayor Cllr Beryl Hunwicks, flanked by John Kingsbury and Carl Whiting-Gorley, along with Black & Irons staff

Black & Irons opened on 18 December to great reviews, with food prepared in its charcoal oven.

“It was brilliant – a great night,” said owner Carl Whiting-Gorley.

Carl and his sons Jack and Jamie have been running Black and White Coffee House in the Peacocks since October 2019. He said he started looking at opening a restaurant in March last year when he could see that other food outlets were closing and saw a chance to offer something different.

Owner Carl Whiting-Gorley

“I contacted the council about finding a venue and they were very helpful,” he said.

When Woking moved into tier 4 the day after the opening, the restaurant had to close and Carl has decided not to offer takeaways as the costs of setting this up would be prohibitive.

“We are waiting with bated breath for when we can reopen. I hope the government has another Eat Out to Help Out scheme because we will smash it,” he said.

The restaurant is in the site of the former Bill’s restaurant with the ground floor a bar where diners can have a drink and snack before moving on to their table on the first floor.

Inside the new restaurant

The restaurant’s name comes from the coffee shop and the iron from which the charcoal oven is made.

While Carl overseas the whole operation, Jamie is in charge of the kitchen and bar and Jack runs the front of house.

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