Disembarking a train on Platform 3 in York train station, you’d be forgiven for thinking the train had taken a wrong turn into any small Germanic town. Standing boldly in the oft-busy train station, the green grass, funky tunes and wooden exterior of ÜGOT beckons to intrigued and hungry passers-by.
Taking inspiration from Scandinavia and urban living, Joe Carnell, 20, James Gartshore-Boulter, 19, developed their aspirations of a fun, fresh healthy eatery with world-renowned entrepreneur, Jamal Edwards.
The health food bar opened its first store on Platform 3 at York Railway Station on the 12th of September. Catering for the health-conscious and the tasty-food-seekers alike, ÜGOT promises to satisfy everyone’s needs without compromise. Its selection of delicious foods includes freshly squeezed juices, frozen yoghurt, sandwiches, salads, wraps and an assortment of healthy breakfast options.
Their knowledge of their market is impressive, incorporating successful aspects of restaurants into their own vision for ÜGOT. “Health food isn’t often cool”, explains co-founder James Gartshore-Boulter, “We looked at Nando’s and Hard Rock Cafe to see how they are seen as cool. The link between food and music is important. We want people to remember the food by remembering the music we play. We play loud music, we dance, we smile from 6am-9pm.”
Demonstrating their awareness of being a brand-leader, ÜGOT is the only bar in the UK that cold-presses its juices. By hydraulically pressing the fruit, there is less vitamin loss as there would be by heat. I tried one of the juices featured on the menu (kiwi, apple, spinach and cucumber) and it is possible to taste the crisp, fresh difference.
Providing a healthy diet, UGOT also creates fat-free, sugar-free frozen yoghurts (or ‘FroYo’ as the US calls it) in a range of mouth-wateringly, unusual flavours. Sampling the maple bacon donut ice-cream with sliced strawberries, I expected a very cloying and processed taste but it was surprisingly delicate and light.
Having only opened in September this year, co-founder Joe Carnell already has his sights set on expanding the ÜGOT name, remarking, “We’ve already put in an offer for Newcastle. We’ve got Leeds lined up and a bigger site in York. We want to do more hot foods. Ooh, and I want to reinvent the burger!”
There is an effusive energy about the two friends from Uppingham School as they visibly bounce with enthusiasm while serving customers. Offering samplers and engaging all customers with boundless gusto, it’s not difficult to see how their passion for ÜGOT became a reality.