A total of 750 direct jobs were preserved thanks to the Restaurant Rescue Project, which was launched during the lockdown by Alex Dale of Radford Dale Winery and chef patron Matt Manning of Grub & Vine Restaurant, with a total of R5 031 800 generated by those who bought restaurant vouchers through the Project.
Due to its success with the first collaboration, that between Radford Dale and Grub & Vine, Alex Dale realised that there were many other restaurants who would welcome the same lifeline. Dale contacted other established and premium wine estates who were quick to join the cause.
“The Restaurant Rescue Project has been the life support machine for so many restaurants in this difficult time and it would not have been possible without the hard work and generosity of my good friend Alex Dale. I am incredibly thankful, to not only Alex and Radford Dale for supporting Grub & Vine, but also to all of the other wineries who so generously jumped to the rescue of other restaurants that needed the support. I am very proud to have helped start this incredible initiative and I can’t thank everyone who supported enough”, said Matt Manning.
Commented Luke Dale Roberts, chef and owner of The Test Kitchen and The Pot Luck Club, which both restaurants participated in the programme, “It was a game changer. We had a cash injection when we needed it most, which gave us the springboard we needed to re-open.”
Commenting on the achievements of the RRP, Alex Dale said: “The irony of Covid-19 is that it has brought many of us to our knees, financially, while we remain in perfectly good health. The threat of illness has delivered the actual demise of livelihoods and businesses. The Restaurant Rescue Project was a refusal to stand idly by when so many people in the sector needed help. It showed how people can unite to outflank even the most tumultuous conditions -whether brought about by disease or by government- and survive through helping one-another.”
THE RESTAURANT RESCUE PROJECT IN NUMBERS:
- 19: restaurants that participated
- 29: supporting wineries
- 750: employees’ jobs and livelihoods safeguarded
- 3,471: number of RRP vouchers sold
- R5, 031, 800: cash generated
- R6, 390, 950: retail value of wine pledged by the wineries
All revenue generated from the now-finalised RRP initiative was paid directly into participating restaurants’ bank accounts. There were no marketing or administrative fees, making the Restaurant Rescue Project 100% pro bono.