Chef Doug Sanham is hoping new restaurant the Parade Room in Canterbury will put the city on the UK food map.
The former head chef of the Beacon in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, joined the restaurant as head chef earlier this year ahead of its opening in March. The 31-cover restaurant is leased to local businessmen Stephen Allen and James Caldon, who also operate adjoining bar One Pound Lane which opened three years ago.
"It would be nice to try and get a star at a restaurant in Canterbury. We're trying to provide a dining experience for people in Canterbury that is fine dining but not fancy," said Sanham, a former Acorn Award winner.
"Everything is sourced as local as possible to try and celebrate the area we live in," he added. "That's what they've been doing in the cocktail bar for three years and I've tried to take that straight into the restaurant, so the same impact is coming from both sides."
Both businesses sit within the city's Westgate Towers; the former 1830 city gaol, 1907 police station and more recently City Gaol café, and feature five eight-cover restored former police cells downstairs for dining.
Sanham described the menu as a 6-6-6 "casual fine dining" concept offering modern British food with Mediterranean and Asian influences, making use of local produce and celebrating Kent.
Dishes include truffle porcini spaghetti with wild mushrooms; confit loin of pork with warm potato salad, gooseberry jam and black pudding; and pan-roasted sea trout with laksa, mussels, macadamia nuts and sea herbs.