A restaurant owner has joined the cream of sustainable businesses after linking up with an organic dairy for his supplies.
The owner of the Neapolitan Pizzeria Stable Hearth, Nicholas Thexton, has teamed up with Acorn Dairy, which is at the forefront of environmentally friendly production.
All of the restaurant’s milk supplies are being provided in glass bottles, which are used an average of 60 times in their lifetime before being recycled.
The restaurant, in Duke Street, Darlington, also provides takeaway boxes in recyclable cardboard and biodegradable vegetable matter and paper straws. The 2.5 tonne oven is hardwood-fired and runs at 450 degrees to minimise pollution and ash.
Director of Acorn Dairy Caroline Bell said: “It is great working with a restaurateur with vision who values the importance of sustainability.
“Nicholas has joined a rising wave of businesses in the region who recognise the merits of this green approach.”
Acorn Dairy has won a host of awards for its green methods of farming to produce milk that is richer in nutrients and antioxidants.
Mrs Bell said: “We have seen a huge increase in custom for our glass bottles since the BBC’s Blue Planet II, which highlighted the dangers of man-made detritus. Clients also gain the health benefits and extra flavour of the organically produced milk.”
Nicholas’ interest in food and the culinary arts was sparked at Barnard Castle School and he also supports fellow Old Barnardian Andrew Henley who runs Rail Town Coffee.
“Even at school I was always organising events and at 18 became the protégé of the chief executive of Tall Trees, Yarm, where I worked for 10 years,” he said.
“I read a culinary arts degree at Teesside University and have always been a foodie. I love cooking with fire and in 2013 opened Stable Hearth pizzeria in Gainford.
“In December we opened Stable Hearth in Darlington, a specialist Neapolitan Pizzeria, refitting what had been an art gallery with recycled roof timbers and Victorian cupboards from the demolished Ravensthorpe School and light fittings from an old armaments factory, one of which has a bullet hole in the shade.”
Nicholas has plans to expand his current 60 covers with an additional 45 upstairs and is also seeking AVPN (Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana) accreditation.
“It is great being able to link up with local businesses like Acorn and Rail Town,” he said. “We also source our strawberries locally from Piercebridge, which helps the environment too.”