THOMPSON St Albans Awarded Highly-Coveted 3 AA Rosettes
By Phil Thompson
Now in our 4th year, the team at THOMPSON St Albans and I have just been awarded our 3rd AA Rosette. This is a huge achievement for the team, me personally, and for my fiancée and business partner Marianne, who has put up with me for the past seven years and for some reason stayed.
We would like to thank our guests, regular customers, friends and family who have all supported us over the years. Thank you doesn’t even come close to what we want to say to our team, who have all worked tirelessly to achieve this very high standard. I don’t know where we would be without them!
Being awarded 3 AA Rosettes in the AA Guide is a true honour. Here is a quote from the guide explaining what this means:
It’s a team effort
Achieving 3 AA Rosettes is not just down to me, but is the result of a massive team effort. I couldn’t be more proud of them. Every day the chefs and front-of-house staff come in and work hard, achieving our high standards, aiming to make our guests’ experience as enjoyable as possible. Whether it be a special occasion, a date night, family Sunday lunch, a business lunch, a corporate event, a function, or simply catching up with friends, we offer a relaxed, fine-dining experience that suits all occasions. Whilst we may not get it right 100% of the time, we really do care about every single service, every single table, every single day. We are constantly adapting and changing, thanks to customer feedback. Four years on and we are still learning every day; training the team, amending and adapting processes, and following best practice, to ensure we give the best experience to all our guests.
We achieved 2 AA Rosettes at THOMPSON St Albans in the first three months of opening, which I was extremely proud of, as were my fiancée and the rest of my wonderful team. Later in our first year, we were awarded an amazing score in the Waitrose Good Food Guide, which again was a massive achievement and boost for us. We then won the St Albans Chamber of Commerce Best Restaurant Award in 2015/16, followed by the Hertfordshire Life Best Restaurant and Best Chef Awards in 2016/17. I am so proud of what the team have helped us achieve in our first four years. With our 4th birthday coming up on the 1st November 2017 and the beginning of year five looming, we are really looking forward to fulfilling our next set of plans for THOMPSON St Albans. Running and building up the business has, without a shadow of a doubt, been the hardest part of my career to date, but also the most worthwhile and satisfying.
Relaxed dining experience
We are constantly pushing ourselves and the team to do better every day, to give our guests the experience they deserve. I strive to develop new menu ideas and flavour combinations, with my own flair and modern twist, while staying true to my classic training and cooking style. Our front-of-house restaurant team works hard to give you a relaxed dining experience that makes you feel welcome, pampered and special. We have created a place you can come to relax and enjoy wonderful food, with great company and attentive but not invasive service. It takes time to improve on ambience, décor, tableware and the overall dining experience. As a small, independent, family-run business, this is very much part of our bigger plan and focus of re-investing back into the restaurant.
We are delighted and over the moon with this fantastic achievement and are looking forward to sharing this wonderful news with our regulars, guests and hopefully many new guests, from St Albans, Hertfordshire and further afield well into the future.