About Yard & Coop

Henny Penny give Yard & Coop reasons to smile

Yard & Coop has been one of the most impressive launch stories in the fast-casual dining sector. Since opening their first restaurant and bar in Manchester in July 2015, they have attracted a dedicated following of fans who love the unique Yard & Coop buttermilk fried chicken recipe. Two more sites followed, in Liverpool and most recently in Leeds, and this success was recognised at the 2019 FEJ Awards where Yard & Coop won ‘Operator of the year for the best new kitchen concept.’

Yard & Coop is independently owned by Carl Morris and his business partner Laura Morris (no relation) who gave up successful careers in the hospitality industry to, as Carl explains: “Create something great; something they could be proud of.” Carl and Laura knew they wanted to get into fast-casual dining, not only because they saw the business potential of this growing market, but as Carl explains: “Casual dining is fun. It’s part of the younger generations’ night out.” The mission statement for Yard & Coop is clear and ambitious: ‘The best chicken with the biggest smile’ and as Carl elaborates: “We only do one thing and so we need to do it to the best of our ability. We strive to create the world’s best buttermilk fried chicken.”

Yard & Coop

A research trip to the States showed that operators producing the very best fried chicken were using high-performance pressure fryers - and so Yard & Coop invested in two Henny Penny pressure fryers and worked with Jestic to optimise the cooking of their delicious buttermilk fried chicken. Whilst Carl passionately believes that: “Cooking is only as good as the ingredients”, as he explains to staff during training sessions: “Cooking chicken under pressure in the Henny Penny, ‘gives it a hug’ by sealing in that flavour and moisture. To create the optimum crispy but moist buttermilk fried chicken, you have to use a Henny Penny pressure fryer.”

Carl goes on to highlight how important the ongoing support from Jestic is when unforeseen problems arise: “We cook up to 8,000 pieces of chicken each week in some of our restaurants, but it’s not just the initial cook that’s important. There’s a lot of maintenance and day to day management to get it right and we have a great relationship with Jestic as they understand the restaurant business. If there is a problem, Jestic reacts quickly and will go the extra mile to get us up and running again as soon as possible, which cannot be said of every supplier - they have worked with us to create our goal of the perfect piece of fried chicken.”