For four years now, the family-run THOMPSON St Albans has been providing its guests with a fine dining experience like no other. Awarded its third AA rosette in September 2017, this outstanding restaurant is known across the Chilterns and beyond for serving delicious dishes made from skilfully selected produce sourced from the local countryside.
This year, we were lucky enough to have head chef and Essex boy, Phil Thompson, write the forward for our Chilterns Food & Drink Guide. We sat down with him to hear what makes his restaurant so special and the breathtaking surroundings so inspiring:
“I’ve lived in Hertfordshire for 16 years and the area is now home to me. I’ve run Thompson St Albans, a family-run business, for four years now. We offer a relaxed fine dining experience that’s all about making our guests feel pampered not fussed over.”
Being a local chef with a family-run business, the surrounding community is very important to Phil, inspiring him to create dishes that match the vibrancy of the area while using the finest local ingredients. “My menu consist of seasonal, local produce that is full of flavour and tastes delicious; we couldn’t do it without the incredible natural larder of the Chilterns. The stunning countryside of the Chilterns, with its woodlands, fields and chalk downlands, supplies much of the natural produce that the chefs of Buckingham, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire happily make use of. Local farms provide fruit, veg, free-range meats and dairy, while local breweries work to create the perfect tipple. I’m constantly seeking the best local suppliers, and have a wealth to choose from”.
In an area dense with history, beauty, and celebration, it’s important to complement the community spirit with dishes that inspire and excite both locals and visitors to the area alike. “St Albans is a beautiful, vibrant and historic city, which holds multiple festivals and community events. St Albans in June is an arts and music festival with many wonderful culinary sensations and food stalls. The Food & Drink Festival in October features a wide variety of food stalls and cooking demonstrations. Every year I look forward in participating in these fantastic foodie events”.
“No matter what you’re looking for when choosing somewhere to dine out in the beautiful Chilterns, with so much choice across the region you’re sure to eat well.”
If you want to browse through the area’s best eateries, you can request a copy of our Chilterns Food & Drink Guide here or you can download our free smartphone app.