We are Native — an indigenous restaurant created by founders Imogen and Ivan through a mutual appreciation of enjoying wonderful food in a relaxed environment whilst pushing creative boundaries. Native is built upon the philosophy of sustainability and locality, with a zero-waste initiative. We first dipped our toes into the industry whilst studying at university in Brighton; initially making our own jams and chutneys to sell at farmers markets based around London and following this success, we then branched out into creating a series of pop-up restaurants up and down the country. Following this success, in February 2016 we finally settled in our first permanent site at Number 3 Neal’s Yard, Covent Garden, and what a journey this has been.
I hope some of you may have visited us in Neal’s Yard over the past couple of years, and have enjoyed the Native experience. We have been reviewed by numerous notable press, including Jay Rayner, Grace Dent, Time Out’s Top 20 since opening, The Observer Food Monthly Runner Up of best UK restaurant, GQ shortlisted us as Restaurant of the Year in 2018, and we have so much more to give.
We regrettably found out earlier this month that due to an unfortunate planning issue with the local council, we are unable to continue trading at 3 Neal’s Yard. Of course this is very sad, and came as somewhat of a shock, but with every cloud there is a silver lining. We have seen this as an opportunity for us to take Native to the next level, and are very excited to announce our move to 32 Southwark Street near London Bridge. With a quick turnaround the new site will hopefully be up and running in just over two weeks on the 5th of June. This next chapter hopes to be just as successful, with the new restaurant seating a whopping 60 guests. It’s safe to say that going from a 25 to a 60 seat restaurant in such a short notice is going to be a bit of a challenge and we will need all hands on deck for the makeover. Unlike many other restaurants that may have corporate backers behind them we are independent and entirely self-sufficient. Native was initially founded and paid for entirely by ourselves along with the help of our wonderful friends and family. As we don’t have any backers to help us fund the move, this time round we need your help.
To make this dream a reality we are asking you to support us in the new venture. All of your pledges will go towards decorating the site, purchasing cutlery, crockery, kitchen equipment, a coffee machine (something we know many of our guests will greatly appreciate), dining room furniture, etc. ... the list goes on. Lastly, and probably the most important thing that your pledges will fund is our amazing team. All 12 members of our tiny Native family have chosen to stay with us during this difficult cross over period and get stuck in to renovating the new site on a voluntary basis despite still having their own rent, bills and other outgoings to pay. We hope you will support our project and back us in any way you can. In tiny Neal’s Yard we proved that we could create incredible, award winning food in a challenging space. We now have the opportunity to move into a fully functioning kitchen, restaurant and bar, and are ready to show you what else we have in store. The sky really is the limit!
We have tried to offer as many varied rewards as possible, and consider you all a part of our Native journey - it goes without saying that our gratitude is beyond words. If you have any questions, please do contact me and I’ll be happy to help! We’ve made a little video telling you a bit more about us and introducing you to the team, enjoy!
Risks and challenges
With every project there are risks and challenges, not least this one with the very sudden nature of our relocation! We have showed perseverance and determination from day one in Neal's Yard and now we are even luckier to have a motivated team around us who believe in its success as much as we do! We consider each and every person who walks through our doors as an extended part of our Native family - every one shaping our experience in some way, and we are so excited to not only continue to provide the Native experience but also grow, and for you to join this journey with us!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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