Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's new Bristol restaurant due to open today
AHEAD of its official opening today, staff at Bristol's new River Cottage Canteen celebrated their link with local food producers.
The new restaurant is in a converted Grade II listed 19th Century hall in Whiteladies Road near Blackboy Hill and is a much anticipated addition to Bristol's restaurant scene.
It is one of campaigner, TV presenter and food writer, above, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's popular creations – the first of which opened in Axminster back in 2008.
In keeping with the ethos of the firm, up to 90 per cent of the produce will be coming from within a 50-mile radius of the restaurant.
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Last week, staff at the Bristol offering celebrated their partnership with the Chew Magna based Community Farm who will provide the restaurant's organic vegetables.
Former Green's Dining Room owner Andrew Green has taken the role of development chef.
He said: "The Community Farm evokes and excites chefs in this area and that excitement aligns with what we want to create at here. The fact that they look to put back into the community and produce their produce on site is very important to us.
"It would be far easier for me to pick up the phone and source from other places but that is not what we are all about. We want to work with the community."
Mr Green said Bristol was ideal for The River Cottage.
"Bristol shares everything we stand for as a company. The ethos, the way we work with our suppliers and the community. People in Bristol are very keen to get involved in that."
Alison Bellshaw, project manager at Community Farm, said the business was community owned and used other local suppliers as well as running educational projects.
"The River Cottage contacted us when they knew they were coming to Bristol," she said.
"We came down and did a presentation and they decided they wanted to work with us which is great."
River Cottage manager Sarah Kieck added: "We had hundreds apply for jobs here because they really believed in the ethos and what the restaurant stood for."
Other suppliers include Sunseed Organics based by Temple Meads. The organic cattle and poultry will come from a variety of sources.