This means a lot.
In March 2014, when we first gained our two rosettes from the AA, we were delighted, but not entirely surprised. Don’t get me wrong, to gain one rosette is a great achievement, but to gain two was fantastic. However, we did know that an AA inspection was imminent and we knew that we were serving great food. We didn’t know when the inspector was coming but we were prepared. At the time, our restaurant hadn’t been open for two years and we were concentrating our efforts on getting it running smoothly and aiming to offer the best fine dining in the area. So when the inspector revealed his true identity, we were hopeful. Since then, our restaurant has gone from strength to strength. When we were inspected this year, we didn’t expect it. We hadn’t briefed our front of house or kitchen teams that one was on its way; it was completely out of the blue. To use an anecdote, when the England cricket team got to number one in the world, everyone said that getting there was only half the battle; staying there was the difficult thing. Likewise, we are very appreciative that gaining two rosettes when we were prepared is completely different from keeping them when we were not. This means a lot.
Hats have to go off to our brilliant kitchen team, under the guidance of Michael West, who keep maintaining the standards of high quality fine food which looks great and tastes wonderful. Equally deserving of praise are our front of house team lead and organised by our duty managers, who make sure that all our guests needs are met and that we prioritise them having a relaxing and enjoyable meal. Our menus have been developing steadily to become a little unusual, but not so far-out as to make people feel like guinea pigs. We are now featuring dishes such as loin of lamb with rosemary risotto and apple and mint gel, and our desserts have really taken off; the trio of citrus profiteroles with the citrus flavour actually baked within the choux are flying out of the kitchen like a flock of lemon-flavoured golf crests, or something like that…
Moving forward, we have now added online booking to our restaurant. You can, of course, still phone to book, and our duty managers will be happy to answer any questions you throw at them, including dietary requirements, seating plans or any Dinner Bed and Breakfast deals we have going. However, if you prefer to just click, you can do that as well.
We will not be resting on our laurels. Having the rosettes has had a positive impact on our staff and on our standards, and we will be continuing our constant aim to improve on these even more, you never know who the next guest to book a table may be.
Onwards and upwards.