Bar closes kitchen owing to environmental health issues

A Smithdown Road restaurant famed for its award-winning breakfasts closed its kitchen to comply with environmental health demands, it can be revealed.

The Tavern Co has twice been named the UK’s Best Breakfast for its full English but after a poor hygiene rating from Liverpool Council’s environmental health team earlier this year, it has had to pull its food serving while refurbishments are made.

In March, officials from the city council deemed major improvements to be required at the popular venue.

Officials from the Cunard Building and the Tavern confirmed to the LDRS the kitchen has been shut down following a visit from the council’s team last Tuesday.

The Tavern Co was set up by Keith Gurney who moved to Liverpool in 1986 from the USA. He first travelled to Europe with university friends who were on football scholarships from Liverpool.

The Tavern Co opened in 1990 and at the time was made up of just the bar area which today customers wait to be seated in. Over the last 33 years, it has developed into an award-winning restaurant.

A spokesperson for the business said the lease for the venue was taken over almost a month ago by new owners. They added how the kitchen had been closed prior to the inspection by council officials last week but a planned refurbishment had been “expedited” when issues were raised.

A Liverpool Council spokesperson confirmed the kitchen had been closed “in compliance with environmental health regulations.” The venue’s bar will remain open during the time the kitchen is shut down for improvements to be made.

In March, The Tavern Co was handed a one out of five hygiene mark, meaning major improvements were needed. This is assessed on a number of factors including handling, storage and preparation of food, cleanliness of facilities and management of food safety.

Local authority food safety officers outline the improvements that they need to make, and advice on how to achieve a higher rating. 

A date has not been confirmed for the kitchen to reopen to customers. No further details have been released about the food hygiene rating at this stage.

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