Liverpool is packed with inspiring women in business, and our hospitality industry is no different. We’ve picked a few inspiring female-led businesses that are heating up the Liverpool food scene. 


Leaf, Bold Street

Natalie Heywood set up Leaf simply because she loved a good cup of tea and wanted to bring quality loose leaf tea to Liverpool. Formed in 2007, the female-led venue is an intimate and bohemian space on Bold Street. Their Head of Development, Claire Lara (pictured with Dame Mary Berry) was one of five top UK chefs who competed in BBC One’s The Coronation Dish in 2023 - a national food contest launched by The One Show to mark the Coronation. Clare’s competition dish was a beautiful King Oyster Mushroom Filo Tart.

A former winner of Masterchef: The Professionals, Clare is one of Liverpool’s most innovative and long-standing culinary figures. She’s also Head of Development at One Fine Day and Oh Me Oh My. 


Claire Lara, chef and Dame Mary Berry smile for a picture together



La Bistroteca, Baltic Market  

Created by the talented Livia Alarcon (former head chef at Maray), La Bistroteca is known for European bistro-inspired dishes. Must-try dishes include her beer battered fish and chips with minted peas and tartare sauce (as shown), and her steak chimichurri sandwich. Yum! 
Liv is an up and coming chef in the city that celebrates European cuisine, inspired by her love of travelling. The food is relaxed, familiar and full of flavour. 


Fresh fish and chips with peas on a plate in the sunshine. There's also a pint of larger and some ramakins of sauce.



A lady stands wearing a head scarf and large sunglasses. She is holding a colourful bouquet of flowersFozias, Picton Road 


Fozia’s love for cooking was started by her mother, whose legacy still influences her food today. Recipes, handed down through the generations from the heartlands of Kashmir, are complemented beautifully with refined techniques of Western culinary arts. The result is a masterpiece of fusion food. 

She re-kindled her passion for cooking while living in Spain where she started selling food at local market stalls. Upon moving back to Liverpool, she worked in Squash, a sustainable arts and health initiative that promotes creative health education and serves great food. 
Her popular Kashmiri Street Food Venue (of the same name) serves delicious Kashmiri street food and cakes. Everything is prepared from scratch. A must try is her golden syrup cake and, of course, samosas. 



A cream cake with lilac, pink and cream piping detail topped with cherries

Mon Petit Chou, Aigburth Road

 Led by talented pastry chef Betty, who embraced her passion for pastry during lockdown. She has now established herself as a pastry master who offers everything from sweet to savoury treats.
Betty is also known for her “too beautiful to eat” celebration cakes topped with melt-in-your-mouth buttercream. They are made fresh on the day for any occasion you can think of. You must try double chocolate and tiramisu, or their delicious lemon number (as shown). 


Lunyalita, Albert Dock

Another Liverpool gem by Elaine and Peter Kinsella, Lunyalita opened its doors in 2018 with an all-female team in the Albert Dock, Liverpool. 
They source the finest artisan Catalan and Spanish ingredients and the highest quality local fresh ingredients to produce an array of delicious, authentic tapas dishes. Lunyalita is the perfect spring and summer place to enjoy great food and drink, with views overlooking the Albert Dock and a ground floor sun terrace. Try their dirty bravas, or ibérico pork ribs, and if you’re feeling hungry, go for the giant deli platter (as shown). 


A huge charcuterie board with cured meats, crisps, cheese, a scotch egg, pickles, crackers and celery on a wooden serving board.



Three beef burger patties piled on eachother, dripping with cheese and served in a brioche bun with fries. The plate is held up outside in a seating area with large orange umbrellas.Free State Kitchen, Maryland Street 

Free State Kitchen is led by husband and wife team Gary and Kate, who offer laidback cool to Liverpool’s food scene. They serve a contemporary twist on American classics, its good food for the soul. Any time you’re in Liverpool’s cultural quarter, Free State Kitchen is a must stop for an amazing burger. Try the Double Deluxe with two 5oz chuck beef patties, American Cheese, FSK Secret Sauce, tomato, lettuce and onion. Or go large and add an extra patty for a Triple Deluxe (as shown). It's mouth-wateringly good! 


A plate of mac and cheese and tenderstem broccoli on a dark blue plate


Fig and The Wild, Love Lane

Alison Lockett-Burke is the founder and head chef at Fig and the Wild. Fig and the Wild host unique supper clubs in unusual spaces, plan creative events, cater weddings, corporate gigs and tv, film and photography shoots across the UK. It started out as a passion project with the aim of bringing people together around tables of delicious food. 
Alison once worked on a farm on a tiny Danish island. It was then that she realised the power of food, cooking and eating in bringing people together. One of her top 5 ultimate comfort food dishes is Mac and Cheese, the perfect dish to eat from a bowl with one hand from the comfort of a couch. Her version (pictured) is extra tasty, with chorizo, chickpeas and kale. 


Delifonseca Dockside, Brunswick Way

Candice Fonseca, Proprietor of Delifonseca Dockside has created a ‘foodies’ paradise along the docks. The restaurant celebrates classic food and includes beautiful fresh produce from the region. Winners of Good Food Guide Readers Restaurant of the Year 2014 and the 'Taste of Liverpool' award at the 2019 Merseyside Tourism Awards, this is a place not to be missed. 

Their food hall (pictured) is always full of delicious deli foods, a wide range of jams and other condiments, a choice of great wines, fresh cheeses and salads. They also host award-winning butchers Edge & Sons. 

Candice is also a keen supporter of gender equality within hospitality, particularly within leadership roles. 


Inside the Delifonseca store packed with fresh produce

Gabriella Margiotta, Cucina Di Vincenzo, Woolton Road


Another Liverpool star is Gabriella (pictured), who was a Masterchef: The Professionals finalist in 2022 and sous-chef at her father’s award-winning South Liverpool restaurant. 

Gabriella’s family restaurant opened in 2016 in Woolton, their focus is classic Italian cuisine. She has a home-cook style with a passion for food and a real understanding of ingredients and flavour. You can see more of Gabriella’s food on her Instagram, Gabriella’s Kitchen

Gabriella Margiotti stands wearing Masterchef chef whites