A former British champion skier who swapped the slopes for catering management is aiming to take the Brewery Arts Centre to the pinnacle of Kendal’s range of restaurants.
Kerry Gossio has taken over as the manager of the Brewery’s recently refurbished Vats Bar and Grainstore Restaurant and she is planning to use her experience heading up some of the best-known eateries in South Lakeland to revamp the menu and service at the venue.
Kerry’s catering career began when her family moved from South Lakeland to the French Alps to help her burgeoning talent as a young Alpine skiier and she began working part-time in her parents’ chalet business.
After her skiing career came to a close, during which time she won the British Alpine championships and earned a place on the England Alpine skiing team, Kerry moved back to South Lakeland. She quickly found a successful niche for herself in the pub and restaurant trade and rose rapidly from pulling pints at the Kings Arms in Hale to heading up the reopening of newly renovated Strickland Arms at Sizergh.
“It was absolutely fantastic to be part of the team at the Strickland Arms. We started from nothing and built up a really strong, loyal customer base and earned a great reputation for our food and customer service. We were also featured in the Michelin Pub Guide every year I was there which was a great feather in our cap, especially with the wealth of fantastic pubs and restaurants there are in this part of the world,” said Kerry.
From The Strickland Arms, Kerry went on to help set up the equally popular Derby Arms at Levens before deciding to go it alone, becoming co-owner at the Hare and Hounds, Bowland Bridge.
During this time, Kerry joined the Brewery as a member of the board, inspired by happy memories of visiting the centre during her youth. She took time out from the world of work to start a family but is now raring to get going again in her new role at the Brewery.
“I’ve been coming to the Brewery as a customer for many years and the food and drink outlets at the centre have massive potential. The main thing I’ve always focused on, wherever I’ve worked, is getting the service spot on and everything else follows on from that,” said Kerry.
“We’ll be tweaking the food and drink menus in the coming months and putting on some exciting events in the Vats Bar in the New Year. The Brewery has always been famous for the buzz that comes from the live music, comedy and theatre and we’re looking forward to adding to it in our own unique way.”