‘UN­CER­TAIN TIMES’

The Sligo Champion - - NEWS -

A lead­ing Sligo res­tau­rant owner has warned of un­cer­tain times ahead for the sec­tor due to Brexit.An­thony Gray, who is cel­e­brat­ing the first birth­day of his Hooked Res­tau­rant on Rock­wood Pa­rade says while it has been an amaz­ing first year “de­spite the un­ex­pected chal­lenges thrown at us by the re­cent budget” all was not rosy in the hos­pi­tal­ity in­dus­try.

“We have seen a dra­matic turn­down in the num­ber of vis­i­tors from the North due to the de­val­u­a­tion of ster­ling. Now, we are fac­ing un­char­tered waters with Brexit loom­ing. These are wor­ry­ing times for all of us,” said An­thony, a past pres­i­dent of the Restau­rants As­so­ci­a­tion of Ire­land. An­thony re­mains pos­i­tive and pledges to sup­port lo­cal busi­ness. “We will con­tinue to sup­port lo­cal pro­duc­ers and sup­pli­ers to help them get through these tough times too.

“I wel­come the new venues which have re­cently opened in Sligo. They give much needed jobs and demon­strate the pos­i­tive spirit which makes Sligo stand out from other towns. We will rise above the VAT rate change and any other ob­sta­cles put in our way. Our cus­tomers can de­pend on us for the best at­mos­phere, the best ser­vice and of course the best food,” he said. Hooked is An­thony’s sec­ond res­tau­rant in Sligo and has won awards such as the Bord Bia “Just Ask” Res­tau­rant of the Year, Best New­comer of the Year at the Yes Chef Awards, Best New­comer in Con­naught in the Ir­ish Res­tau­rant Awards. “Sligo cer­tainly does seem to be go­ing through a res­tau­rant boom at the mo­ment with no less than four open­ing in the past cou­ple of weeks, Shake Dog on Wine Street be­side the Om­ni­plex Cinema, Flipside on Thomas Street, a new Mex­i­can out­let on Tober­gal Lane and an Asian res­tau­rant on Grat­tan Street.

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