A POPULAR restaurant has reopened with the former head of the house in charge.
Thomas Brown and his wife, Christine, relaunched The Bridgewater Arms in Winston last week after buying the lease earlier in the year.
The restaurant, formerly run by chef Paul Grundy, has been closed since the start of the pandemic.
Mr Brown, who was born and raised in Piercebridge, is a familiar face at the restaurant and bar, having worked as a front desk manager since 2004 with stints at Raby Hunt and Headlam Hall in between.
Mr Brown said: “This is the fifth time that I have returned to Bridgewater. The first four were as an employee and now as an owner.
“Alan offered me the lease [Hardy] but I didn’t want to take over until I had a chef in place and when I found Matthew[Waters} it was in full swing.
The couple, passionate about good food, good service and good wine, had planned to open the restaurant in July but had to delay after a fall knocked Mr Brown into plaster for two months.
He added: “I fell three or four feet through an open manhole and broke my left leg and it kicked everything back.”
The delay increased the couple’s enthusiasm for serving appetizing dishes made with local produce.
He added: “We want to celebrate this region and put more emphasis on local products. We will keep the menu seasonal so that it changes throughout the year depending on what is available. For example, at this time of year we want to focus on gaming.
The restaurant will offer lunch services from noon to 2 p.m., Wednesday to Saturday, with early risers starting at 5.30 p.m. and evening reservations starting at 7 p.m. Sunday lunches are also making a comeback with a choice of roasts.
Ms Brown said: ‘Covid has provided us with the best opportunity at the worst time and we want to make sure that these premises are known as a place of special occasion where you can come and enjoy the great food, the atmosphere and the service. . “