Meltdown is a new grilled cheese restaurant which has just opened in Handbridge. Originally from Melbourne, owner Laura Lautrete has over 30 years experience in the hospitality trade, with her parents running restaurants in Chester, and herself having worked in some high profile restaurants in London.


“I came back to Cheshire about 3 years ago.. I opened  for Urbano.. I have always wanted my own place. This came to me really, it was all very organic.  I needed some quality of life!  It was about finding the right sort of idea.  The name came to me, which people think is very fitting, and if theres one thing I’m into, its cheese!”

Laura received a government start up loan to fund the business, a process which was filmed by the BBC. The show about responsible lending will be televised later this summer.

Of the cheese based menu, Laura says: “I wanted it to be a simple product.” Meltdown use their own cheese blend and serve coffee from established Bridge street independent Jaunty Goat. Bread is supplied by an artisan bakery in the Wirral, and other additions to the menu are being sourced, including gluten free bread and vegan cheese. Sweet options include croissants and grilled Nutella//mascarpone.


“I want to talk to people and find out what they want! Its been really cute. I had 2 women driving up from Tattenhall because they’d seen it on Instagram. I’m the sort of person who has to really love what I’m doing. I have seen these sorts of things done before, where people do one thing and do it well.

Having recently acquired an alcohol license from Cwac, Laura says she hopes Meltdown will be used by all sectors of the Handbridge community. “I have a 24 year old daughter and its nice to have somewhere local and safe for your kids to hang around. We get a nice mixture, older people in the morning who want someone to chat to, plus a mixture of after school/families. ”

Welcome to Handbridge. Sign by Hairy Mitten.

Laura says its “really heartening” to see successful independents. “We have a really cute group of independents in Chester…. Gustum, Jaunty Goat, obviously the Sticky Walnut gang, the Flower Cup, Pierogi… They’re all really supportive, we’re all retweeting each other on social media its great to be a part of that ..”

Meltdown, 14 Queen’s Park View Handbridge

Open Tues- Sun from 11am

@Meltdownchester on the twitter

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