The Ballroom at The Crown in Faringdon

It’s been quite a week for The Crown in Faringdon because after qualifying as a finalist in the BEST RESTAURANT award at the OXINABOX FOOD AWARDS read about it here came news that The Ballroom Restaurant had been awarded 2AA rosettes, the hotel there 4 AA stars, and Monday’s celebrity chef dinner sold out in three hours.

In short, head chef Samuel Squires is killing it in the kitchens, and the hotel is really picking up pace under the innovative eyes of new owners Nick and Seb Evans. read about it here

The Crown in Faringdon crew at the OXINABOX FOOD AWARDS 2023

“The team is ecstatic because the AA news came totally out of the blue,” Samuel said. “We are still the new kids on the block but are doing what we love to do and have the AA and OXINABOX behind us, so next year we will keep smashing it.

“We have achieved a lot and will follow this with even bigger and better things in the future,” he says. find out more about Samuel here

Samuel Squires at The Old Crown in Faringdon

To prove his point, The Crown’s 70-seater celebrity chef banquet on Monday night sold out in just three hours. Raising money for The Burnt Chef Project, it features six chefs cooking seven courses starting with a black tie champagne reception.

Robbie Lorraine from Only Food and Courses

The Burnt Chef Project raises awareness of mental health problems within the hospitality industry and Samuel is an ambassador for the charity.

100% of the profits from the evening will go to the charity, the chefs time and the produce and wine donated by the likes of The Oxford Wine Company and Liberty Wines.

The new bar at The Old Crown in Faringdon

“We have been overwhelmed by the support we have received. It’s so important to challenge the stigma around mental health in the hospitality industry.

“I certainly struggled during Covid, but The Burnt Chef Project really helped me get through that”

“I certainly struggled during Covid, because chefs are always busy and I just didn’t know what to do with myself, but The Burnt Chef Project really helped me get through that, so I wanted to give something back,” Samuel says.

James Peck

With an expected £5000 being raised on Monday night alone, and an auction of exciting prizes from Formula One experiences to paintings and Samuel cooking for eight in your own home expected to raise even more.

The chefs featuring in the star line-up include James Peck from Ember Restaurant in Wellingborough, Robbie Lorraine from Only Food and Courses, Deepak Mallya from The Ritz, Daniel Francesco Catalano from The Crowd, Paul Welburn from The Swan in Islip and Samuel himself, it looks set to be quite a night!.

Paul Welburn

And with seven courses of ‘the Best of British’ food, Samuel hopes the event will become an annual event.

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