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British Larder pair sell award-winning Suffolk pub

13 February 2015 by
British Larder pair sell award-winning Suffolk pub

British Larder co-founders Madalene Bonvini-Hamel and Ross Pike have sold their award-winning Suffolk gastropub in order to concentrate on their burgeoning recipe website business.

The pair originally opened the pub in July 2010 when they took over the Cherry Tree in Bromeswell to give a name to their online recipe diary www.britishlarder.co.uk.

It went on to become highly successful in its own right, being named an inspectors' favourite in the Michelin Pub Guide, as well as making it into the Good Food Guide.

But Bonvini-Hamel and Pike's website and consultancy work has also continued to grow and they have been forced to concentrate on one or the other.

They initially looked at closing down the recipe website but were advised not to do so by the design agency they were working with because of its global popularity.

As a result, they will let go of the gastropub and focus on working in retail, food and chef consultancy, food safaris, food photography, food publishing and food journalism.

The pub has been bought by private owner and a former partner of Eversheds law firm, Brendan Padfield. The British Larder will close its doors on Sunday 15 February, and will re-open as a new venture some time after the deal has completed at the end of this month. The site will remain as a pub/restaurant.

Meanwhile, Bonvini-Hamel and Pike's website is set to be redeveloped and relaunched.

"The choice had to be made between running the pub and developing the other aspects of our business. Ross and I were working 90 hours a week in the gastropub and, as a result, we weren't able to give the other opportunities the attention they deserved," said Bonvini-Hamel, who creates recipes for a seasonal ingredient-based article in The Caterer each month.

In 2012, Bonvini-Hamel published The British Larder: A Cookbook for All Seasons, which won the UK Female Chef Cookbook of the Year title in the 2012 Gourmand International book awards. The British Larder also launched a range of seasonal Christmas products in Selfridges in 2014.

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