Casual Dining Restaurant & Pub Awards 2016 announces finalists

Brands including JD Wetherspoon, Young’s, Revolution, ASK Italian, Jamie’s Italian, Carluccio's, Côte Restaurants, wagamama, Nando’s, Ed’s Easy Diner, GBK, and Pizza Hut, have made the shortlists for this year’s first ever Casual Dining Restaurant & Pub Awards.

They’re among 48 casual dining pub and restaurant operators competing for awards across 12 categories, which cover everything from new concepts, social responsibility and employee engagement to marketing and design, as well as recognising the outstanding brands of the year.  The awards – launched to celebrate excellence within the growing multi-billion pound casual dining sector – will be presented at a prestigious awards dinner on the evening of 24 February 2016 at The Grange St. Paul’s Hotel in London, following the first day of next month’s Casual Dining show.

Diversified UK’s award manager, Louisa Pope, says: “The casual dining market is thriving, thanks in large part to the fantastic innovations and dedication of operators and the incredible dining experience they offer.  The launch of the Casual Dining Restaurant & Pub Awards is a fantastic way to celebrate their achievements and reward those companies who are making a real difference to the growth of this sector.  The calibre of entries has been incredible, congratulations and good luck to all our shortlisted finalists.”

Casual Dining Restaurant & Pub Awards 2016 finalists include:

New Casual Dining Concept of the Year – sponsored by AAK Foodservice

  • Coba
  • Filthy Cow
  • Hood Restaurants
  • Project Pie
  • The Beer Kitchen
  • WM Barker & Co

The Social Responsibility Awards – sponsored by Kafoodle

  • Ed’s Easy Diner
  • The Breakfast Club
  • The King’s Head, Winchester

Casual Dining Marketing Campaign of the Year – sponsored by Chef Direct

  • ASK Italian – #FeedYourTemptation
  • Cabana – #WeAreBrasil
  • Chiquito - #SayFreeze
  • Pizza Hut – Taste Freedom
  • The Fox – Direct Mail Campaign
  • WM Barker & Co – Will’s Campaign
  • Zizzi – #ZizziTacklesCancer

Best Designed Independent Casual Dining Restaurant

  • Bonfire at the Barbican, London (designed by Catering Design Group)
  • Ceviche, Old Street, London (designed by Martin Morales & Fabled Studio)
  • Chai Ki, Canary Wharf, London (designed by DesignLSM)
  • Filthy Cow, Manchester (designed by Mystery)
  • KuPP, Merchant Square, London (designed by DesignLSM)
  • Sulvaki, Bateman St, London (designed by AfroditiKrassa)

Best Designed Multiple Casual Dining Restaurant – sponsored by Red Bull

  • Burger & Lobster, Threadneedle Street, London (designed by DesignLSM)
  • Carluccio's, Market Place, London (designed by DesignLSM)
  • GBK, St. Vincent Street, Glasgow (designed by moreno:masey)
  • MeatLiquor, Upper Street, London (designed by Shed)
  • Nando's, Guildhall, Southampton (designed by moreno:masey)
  • Thaikhun Thai Restaurant, London (designed by Thai Leisure Group)
  • Wondertree, South Terminal, Gatwick Airport (designed by FusionDNA)

Best Designed Casual Dining Pub or Bar

  • The Blue Ball, Tadworth, Surrey (designed by The JS Design Partnership)
  • The Cock Inn, Headley, Surrey (designed by Jones Architecture Design)
  • The Great Wood, Blanchardstown, Ireland (designed by KD Paine & Associates)
  • The Pint Shop, Cambridge (designed by Macaulay Sinclair)
  • WM Barker & Co, Bishopgate, London (designed by Jane Holme, Young & Co’s Brewery)

Independent Casual Dining Restaurant of the Year – sponsored by Lincoln & York

  • Filthy Cow, Manchester
  • Hood Streatham, London
  • HUBBOX, Plymouth
  • Project Pie, Dundee
  • The Yorkshire Meatball Co., Harrogate

Independent Casual Dining Pub of the Year – sponsored by Budweiser Budvar UK

  • The Bull, Ditchling, Sussex
  • The Gloucester Old Spot, Bristol
  • The Long Melford Swan, Suffolk
  • The Northey Arms, Bath
  • Little Gems Country Dining: The Park Pub & Kitchen, Bedford and The Swan Inn, Denham, Bucks
  • The Pint Shop, Cambridge

Employer of the Year – sponsored by Reynolds

  • Brunning & Price
  • Burger & Lobster
  • Dishoom
  • Jamie's Italian
  • The Breakfast Club
  • Wagamama

Multiple Casual Dining Pub Brand of the Year – sponsored by COREcruitment

  • Geronimo Inns
  • JD Wetherspoon
  • Revolution Bars Group
  • Sizzling Pubs
  • Whiting & Hammond

Multiple Casual Dining Restaurant of the Year – sponsored by Bar Foods

  • ASK Italian
  • Burger & Lobster
  • CAU Restaurants
  • Chiquito
  • Côte Restaurants
  • Thaikhun Thai Restaurant
  • Vapiano
  • Wagamama

The winner of the casual dining ‘Champion of the year’ award, nominated by the judges, is to be announced on the night.

The inaugural judging panel includes Karen Forrester, CEO of TGI Friday’s UK; Keith Bird, chief operating officer of GBK; Kate Nicholls, chief executive of The ALMR; Peter Backman, MD of Horizons; Anthony Pender, chairman of the BII; Paul Charity, MD of Propel; Peter Martin, vice chairman of CGA Peach; industry pioneer Ian Neill; Alex Reilley, executive vice chairman of Loungers; Lorraine Wood, director of Arena; Mark McCulloch, founder and CEO of WE ARE Spectacular; David Worthington, chairman of Holmes & Marchant Design Group; Afroditi Krassa, founder of AfroditiKrassa; Theo Williams, designer & creative director of Theo Williams; Tina Norden, project director at Conran and Partners; and Chris Brazier, group event director of Casual Dining.

For further information, please visit

Casual Dining returns to the Business Design Centre, Islington, London, on 24-25 February 2016.  For more information, and to register for a free trade ticket, please visit (direct link:


Media enquiries to:

Emma-Louise Jones, Head of PR
t: +44 (0)1273 645134

Awards enquiries to:

Louisa Pope, Awards Manager
t: +44 (0)1273 645140

Chris Brazier, Group Event Director
t: +44 (0)1273 645123                

Sponsorship enquiries to:

Alex Oliver, Senior Sales Manager
t: +44 (0)1273 645167                


Casual Dining is a two-time winner of ‘Best Tradeshow Exhibition under 2,000sq.m’ at the Association of Event Organisers’ Excellence Awards.  It was the first launch show (UK and international) in over five years to win ‘Best Tradeshow Exhibition under 2,000sq.m’ in 2014.  In 2015, it successfully defended its title and won the category for a second time.

High res images available upon request:

Diversified Communications UK (Diversified UK) is a fast growing trade event organiser and publisher based in Brighton, Peterborough and Nailsworth.  In addition to Casual Dining, Diversified UK’s event portfolio includes lunch!; Commercial Kitchen (new for 2016); Natural Food Show at Natural & Organic Products Europe; Nordic Organic Food Fair in Malmö, Sweden (co–located with Natural Products Scandinavia); Natural and Organic Awards; camexpo; office*; Accountex; SITS – The IT Service Management Show; GEO Business; Capturing Reality; Ocean Business; MARELEC Marine Electromagnetics conference; Euro Bus Expo; Coach & Bus Live; British Tourism & Travel Show; The Route One Operator Excellence Awards; and National Coach Tourism Awards.  For more information, visit:

Diversified UK is part of Diversified Communications, a leading international media company providing market access, education and information through global, national and regional face–to–face events, digital and print publications and television stations.  Diversified serves a number of industries including: seafood, food service, natural and organic, healthcare, commercial marine, and business management.  Based in Portland, Maine, USA, Diversified employs over 850 staff, across eight divisions in seven countries.  For more information, visit:




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It has been exciting to see the level of thought, effort, creativity and professionalism that is being produced in our industry. Years ago marketing was seen very much as a necessary evil, but I am glad to say that judging by the quality of these campaigns that businesses are not only investing in marketing that will make a difference, but are also becoming more and more marketing led as opposed to operator led. Well done to all entrants, you should be very proud.
Mark McCulloch, Founder and Group CEO, WE ARE Spectacular