Pesto Italian Restaurants is the creation of Neil and Sara, the company’s owners. With a passion for food, they have been involved in retail hospitality since their teens, building their careers around the casual dining sector, delivering great food and hospitality at sensible prices.
“We both hate being ripped off in restaurants who charge fancy prices but don’t deliver fancy food and service,” says Neil.
“At Pesto, we aim to give our customers great value for money by producing freshly cooked food, informal but efficient service in a warm, relaxed atmosphere.”
Neil and Sara opened their first Pesto restaurant in 2006 in Manchester. A year after this they opened their second Pesto in The Great Hall, Trafford Centre. Pesto now has eleven restaurants nationwide at a variety of locations.
Pesto evolved from of Neil and Sara’s love for Italian food, but just not in traditionally large portions. “I just find one big plate of pasta too much and a little boring once you’re halfway through it – and that goes the same for big pizzas”, says Sara.
“With Pesto, you can order five or six dishes between the two of you and enjoy a selection of different tastes in one lunch”.
Outside of Pesto Neil and Sara have very different interests. Sara has a love of horses and Neil of anything with an engine that goes fast.
Neil has been known to indulge in some forms of motor-sport, particularly rallying, although he now admits to being not brave enough to compete at the level he once enjoyed.
Looking to the future, Neil and Sara hope to bring Pesto Italian Restaurants to many more cities and towns throughout the UK. Neil adds: “We always keep our eyes open for the right opportunity and location for the next Pesto restaurant.”