Whetstone; Our New Location, Business and Community at Heart

Living wall with Dephna logo in the centre

Introducing the latest dish on Dephna’s menu; our newest kitchen space in Whetstone, Barnet.

Situated in what was once a Barclays Bank, we have worked tirelessly to transform the long-abandoned building into a hub that enriches the local community and its residents. 

But, before we dive into the divine details, let’s take a walk-through tour of our shiny new location!

 

It’s a beauty, right?

The Backstory 

We all have unexpected things that stir up warm, nostalgic feelings, and Dephna is no different. 

Many moons ago, our c0-owner Nimesh, opened his first bank account with Barclays Bank. Seems insignificant, doesn’t it?

But, think back to that time… Opening a bank account is one of the first ‘adult’ milestones when we start to feel grown up. For many people, Nimesh included, this feeling – or the bank itself – starts to hold sentimental value.

Fast forward some years and we stumbled across a vacant building on a weekend stroll. Lo and behold, the deserted building was none-other than an old Barclays Bank, and we just knew we had to save it! 

Rather than let the grand building go to ruin or remain unoccupied and go to waste, we put our thinking caps on.

When plotting ways to convert the old bank for good, we had two goals;

  1. Maintain the integrity of the building
  2. Create a space that benefits the local economy, community and its residents 

With that said, we created a concept never seen before in our existing locations, and we got to work transforming the retired Barclays Bank.

The Community

Our number one priority for opening the Whetstone site was to ensure we create a space that benefits the local community, its economy and doesn’t infringe on the immediate area. 

We thought long and hard to ensure we met our own criteria, including:

  • The type of food businesses we would rent our kitchens to
  • How to prevent smoke and odour outside of the building
  • Implementing a sufficient waste and refuse system
  • How to make all dealings happen on-site, keeping foot traffic and delivery drivers off the roadside

Only after we were satisfied that we had solutions to these hurdles did we start the renovations on Whetstone.

Beyond our internal operations, unoccupied buildings – especially ones of this size – often have the same fate. In the short term, it has been known for squatters or illegal ravers to take over, which can cause extreme disturbance in the local area. In the long term, it’s common for property developers to get permission to build exclusive apartments that only a small percentage of the community can appreciate.

Our kitchens create a world of deliciousness for all to enjoy while championing small, independent food businesses.

The Concept 

We’re incredibly proud of the concept we imagined for Whetstone; it’s far beyond anything we have done before.

Designed for Delivery

We designed Whetstone with delivery-focused food businesses at its heart. Aside from our fresh units to inspire and allow for the cooking of delicious meals, we rustled up some side dishes that make the delivery process quick and easy for the food businesses and the delivery drivers with zero disruption to the community. 

We have a dedicated collection zone on the lower ground to eradicate any problems caused by delivery drivers waiting to collect orders outside on the pavement. 

An app alerts drivers when an order is ready to collect to ensure they are not waiting around the premises. Only then do drivers arrive at the site, where they take a lift down to the lower-ground collection points and swiftly grab the assigned order from a dumbwaiter, sent down by the restaurant. 

Drivers are on their way before you know it, with no roadside disturbance. 

Two and Ten Collection Scheme

Our two and ten collection scheme couldn’t be simpler;

  • £2,000 flat rate to rent a kitchen
  • Pay a 10% commission to Dephna for collection orders only
  • KOBAS ePos and delivery system already set up

It’s a quick and cash-friendly solution for the food business – turn up, fire up and start reaping the benefits.

200 Types of Cuisine from 30 Restaurants

Whetstone offers a one-stop location for 200 types of cuisine from 30 growing independent restaurants. For the first time, restaurants using a Dephna kitchen can benefit from the footfall of a busy high street. 

Walk-in collection customers can order food from one or multiple vendors within a few quick steps and receive their food to feast on at home with ease.

Managed Collections

There is a fully staffed reception area where customers are welcome to wait while the restaurant prepares their food. Once ready, restaurant staff can pop the order into the dumbwaiter – no need to carry it down to reception – where one of our staff members will retrieve the order and serve it to the customer.

The Ingredients

So, time to tell you a bit more about the ingredients that make up our kitchens and site…

RydAir Odour and Smoke Filtration

Each kitchen has a state-of-the-art RydAir extraction system installed, which offers powerful odour and smoke filtration. 

Not only does the RydAir ensure a comfortable working environment for those grafting in the kitchens, but the mighty filtration also prevents the smoke and aromas from leaking out into the open, which might otherwise cause bother to residents of Whetstone.

Dumbwaiter

We’re pretty excited about this one; Whetstone is the first building of its kind to feature a dumb waiter. 

We want our operations to run as smoothly as possible, that includes making the lives of our restaurants and delivery drivers easier. Since we are in a three-storey building, we didn’t want restaurant staff or drivers to have to keep going back and forth between floors, which can be costly and annoying, especially during busy periods. 

So how do we fix this? By installing a dumbwaiter!

Lifts Between All Floors

We have installed lifts that operate between all floors of the building, from lower-ground, to third. 

Lifts were non-negotiable when planning Whetstone to ensure easy stock transportation for businesses, and to haul heavy equipment into units with zero fuss – and no lifting injuries!

Other Amenities

We’ve covered the star features of Whetstone, here are some of the smaller details that still make a big difference:

  • Loading bays
  • 24/7 access to your kitchen or cold room
  • Dedicated pay-as-you-go parking spaces
  • On-site cold rooms – to run your business and manage your stock under one roof.

 

Our latest northwest London location is ready to house some scrumptious local food businesses. Whether you’re an artisan baker, a street food brand, or a Whetstone takeaway legend looking, Whetstone is waiting.

Don’t wait around! Come and appreciate the true beauty and practicality of our latest hub, book a viewing today or give us a call for any further information.

We look forward to welcoming you to Whetstone!

by Dephna

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