Sainsbury’s & Carluccio’s to trial coffee shop in St Albans superstore

Sainsbury’s and Carluccio’s are teaming up to test out three new in-store concepts for the first time.

The first format will be a coffee shop in Sainsbury’s St Albans superstore, offering customers eat-in as well as takeaway options. Caffè Carluccio’s will open on 3rd June and will be the first Carluccio’s to open in a supermarket.

The 900 sq ft coffee shop will have space for up to 45 customers to sit and enjoy the brand’s signature real Italian coffee, iced coffees, Cremosa blended drinks and granita fruit ices alongside all-day breakfast foods and light-bites, including freshly made ciabatta sandwiches, toasties, filled croissants and pastries.

A range of Carluccio’s retail products will also be available including biscuits such as biscotti and cantucci, ground coffee and gianduiotti chocolates.

In addition, a Carluccio’s Counter will also launch in June in the Sainsbury’s Leamington Spa superstore, offering the brand’s trademark deli products and pizza. Deli products include pasta, olive oils and sauces alongside chilled stone-baked pizzas.

Hot ready-to-eat items, including made-to-order pizza and rotisserie chicken will be available to take-away, as well as for delivery via Deliveroo, Uber Eats and Just Eat.

The third concept being trialled is the Restaurant Hub, a multi-brand offer with grab-and-go and delivery options from brands including Caffe Carluccio’s, GBK, Slim Chickens, Harry Ramsdens and Ed’s Easy Diner. The Restaurant Hub will open in July in Sainsbury’s Selly Oak superstore.

Carluccio’s was acquired by Boparan Restaurant Group in May 2020. Sainsbury’s and Boparan Restaurant Group will listen closely to customer feedback in all three stores before deciding any next steps.

Rhian Bartlett, Food Commercial Director at Sainsbury’s, said, “We’re testing these new offers as part of our plan to put food back at the heart of Sainsbury’s – bringing even more innovative and delicious food and drink to our stores.

'This is the first time we’ve worked with Carluccio’s and we’ll be listening closely to see what shoppers think of the different concepts, which also include GBK, Slim Chickens, Harry Ramsdens and Ed’s Easy Diner.”

Satnam Leihal, Managing Director at Boparan Restaurant Group, said, “Our customers tell us they love our brands and would like to access them more regularly and be part of their family home occasions. This trial with Sainsbury’s allows us to bring our range of high quality products to more customers, more often, in varied formats”.

Supporting the brand will be Carluccio’s first app, allowing ordering, delivery, menu access and location finding as well providing users with a loyalty mechanic.