Freemasons at Wiswell to expand kitchen and offer rooms
Award-winning Lancashire pub Freemasons at Wiswell is to expand, with plans for a new extended kitchen and accompanying "developmental dining room", as well as plans to offer guest rooms for the first time.
The venue, which earlier this year claimed the top spot on the Waitrose Top 50 Pubs list and also became the first pub to score 7/10 in the Waitrose Good Food Guide, aims to complete the changes by summer next year, subject to planning permission.
Chef patron Steven Smith said the new extension would more than double the size of the existing space, which saw a new cooking range installed around four years ago.
The new room, to be named Mr Smith's, will contain a table almost akin to a bar, with space for 10 people around it, as well as a TV, a collection of Smith's cookbooks, development boards, chillers and other items to create an informal, kitchen feel.
Guests will be greeted with a beer specially brewed for the pub on arrival, and one of the main dishes to be served in Mr Smith's will be an aged beef dish served from Freemasons' own meat ageing unit.
"This is going to be more a think tank or place to come and spend the evening with us, rather than it being billed as a chef's table. This is going to be very different and very individual to me," Smith said.
"We are going to make this an extension of the pub within the kitchen. There will be no waiters at the table - the chefs will serve their own dishes direct to the table."
Meanwhile, the business has bought two neighbouring properties to create four guest rooms, which Smith said would be "top end, and really smart".
"We could fill those rooms now, and apart from Northcote which is 15-20 minutes away, there aren't all that many top-end rooms available in the area," Smith added.
"It's just a natural progression for us. We get so many emails and calls from people who are coming up to eat with us and want to know where they can stay so it makes sense for us."
Freemasons at Wiswell claims top spot in Waitrose Top 50 Pubs 2016 >>
Menuwatch - Freemasons at Wiswell >>
Acorn winners 2012 - Steven Smith >>
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