The shop sits next door to the Quality Chop House which has a reputation for excellent cooking and good quality ingredients. The Client approached us to consider design proposals for the refurbishment of the adjacent shop unit that had recently become available.
The food had to be displayed in a clear and simple manner, but pay reference to the utilitarian aesthetic of the food units surrounding Smithfields meat market and Exmouth Market.
The fit out elements such as the counter, produce display and lighting deserved to portray a textured and slightly rough finish, hence the display of end grain to all the plywood joinery. The edges of the shelves expose the raw plywood to create a contrast with the blackened surfaces and give the impression of packaging that has been sliced open.
The deep black stain contrasts sharply with the timber core of the units, reflecting the blackened character of labels commonly found on timber food crates. The blackened stain plywood is reinforced by the use of cable lighting that represents the packaging and the wrapping of the food produced. The use of exposed bulbs reflects the raw nature of the food preparation that relies on exceptional raw ingredients.
Original black and white tiles behind the butcher’s counter were retained and continue the basic palette used throughout the space.
Access to the working kitchen of the Quality Chop House restaurant was important to ensure that the fresh food and cake trays are constantly re-stocked with baked good throughout the day.
Project Design + Architecture + Words by Fraher Architects Photography © Jack Hobhouse