The Crown - flying the flag nationally for Suffolk
The Crown at Woodbridge will have appeared on national stages three times by mid November in the space of just one month – building on its successes earlier this year as one of the six shortlisted national finalists at the 2010 UK Restaurant and Bar Design Awards in the ‘Bar in a Restaurant or Hotel’ category and also being recommended in all the major restaurant and pub guides for 2011.
The Crown is truly flying the flag for Suffolk, being one of just three national finalists in the ‘Newcomer Of The Year’ category at the November finals of the UK Top 50 Gastropub Awards; a national finalist in the 2010 UK LABC Awards for architectural excellence, also taking place next month; and having recently been invited to address the Morning Advertiser’s Freehouse 500 national conference.
Stephen David, The Crown At Woodbridge’s Chef-Patron is once again humbled, surprised and flattered in equal measure for their boutique townhouse inn to have been recognised in such a short space of time on a countrywide spectrum since it re-opened in the summer of last year as the new look Crown at Woodbridge from a dilapidated ex-Forte hotel.
“I and all the great team here are really excited to be in two national finals next month. Whether we win or not, it is just great for us all, especially the junior staff, to share the glory and see the Crown’s name as the place where together they contribute so much being applauded. We set out 18 months ago to create something different and special, so we are thrilled to again be carrying the flag for Suffolk and showing the rest of the UK how great our wonderful county really is. Being invited to address Freehouse 500, a keynote conference for our specialist independent pubs and inns sector of the UK’s hotel and catering trade, was a real honour and privilege too.”
At a swish ceremony on Monday 15 November at Berkshire’s The Olde Bell at Hurley, the ‘Newcomer Of The Year 2010’ will named at The Top 50 Gastropubs Awards, organised by The Morning Advertiser, the authoritative trade publication for the pubs and inns business and its sister magazine PubChef.
The Crown at Woodbridge has been selected as one of just three national finalists in this category by industry experts including David Hancock, editor of the Alastair Sawday’s Pubs & Inns Guide and Morning Advertiser food editor Jo Bruce, who elaborates “The Crown at Woodbridge impressed the judges with its emphasis on being an informal inn, with a relaxed and casual vibe throughout and a great bar area, as well as the Crown’s eclectic and imaginative menu which blends modern European dishes alongside pub classics, created from locally sourced foods. The Crown’s fabulous rooms and innovative ideas such as spork foods were also highlighted.”
The Crown at Woodbridge hopes to be recognised as a member of The Top 50 Gastropubs ‘hall of fame’ in future years as it gets more well known by its peers; this benchmark roll of honour being decided by a group of 700 top chefs, food writers and gastropub operators. www.top50gastropubs.co.uk
At another prestigious national competition later in November, The Crown at Woodbridge carried its regional mantle as ‘Best Small Commercial Building in East Anglia 2010’ forward to the black tie finals of the UK LABC Awards 2010 in London where it faced some interesting competition in its category from the likes of the new retractable roof over centre court at the Wimbledon Tennis Club in London, the Himalaya exhibit at Twycross Zoo in the East Midlands and Caernarvon’s Victoria Dock in North Wales. www.labcbuildingexcellenceawards.uk.com
Stephen David Chef-Patron and colleague Glyn Williams recently returned from the Freehouse 500 national conference for leading independent publicans and innkeepers at Leicestershire’s Stapleford Park Hotel, Country Estate and Spa. There they were invited to make a keynote speech, addressing the eminent audience from across the UK on three ground-breaking aspects of their boutique townhouse inn – the luxury designer accommodation, ‘spork and bowl’ food, and their new event catering arm, Bespoke by The Crown at Woodbridge.