Tony Matters, A.K.A The Chef’s Designer, talks candidly in the first of a series of blog posts examining restaurant design and the success of restaurants.

It’s not all about the food!

“That might seem like the worst statement ever to make to a chef, but in the world we now live, finesse in a single discipline no longer cuts it.

Customers now demand perfection from all aspects of their lives; appearance, home interiors and even children have long been the subject of perfectionism but with the rise of Instagram and social media, food has now also gained ‘bragging rights’.

Serve up something which tastes truly amazing and yes, your customers will walk away thinking that was great, but if they couldn’t make a pretty picture out of it, it may sway their decision to return.

"It’s not all about the food!"

The same theory applies to the venue and decor.

Customers want even more than great food and a great venue – they want an experience, a brand that has a cohesive narrative across all the customer touchpoints.

Believe it or not, even toilets are a big design consideration right now! No longer just functional, they are an extension of the social spaces – a place for people to chat and post Instagram pics.

From a designers point of view, we need to curate a whole concept, not just a beautiful interior.

We look to tell a story; from the moment a customer enters the building or visits the website, until the moment they leave. This includes the menu and staff uniforms, the lighting and music, and every minute detail of the interior. Whether you’re sat in the dining room, bar or loo, you should feel the brand all around you.

The difference between good and amazing is only achieved by that extra level of consideration and design detail.”