It’s been a punishing 18-months for the hospitality industry and as the UK prepares for the return of indoor dining to the great British pub, there are bound to be winners and losers in the bounce-back lottery.
Things are looking promising for the 17th May start for the White Horse & Griffin in Whitby, which is one of the Great Inns of Britain, a hand-picked collection of traditional coaching inns and small independent luxury hotels.
It’s also the new home for Head Chef, Michael Coates and his kitchen team from the popular seaside restaurant, Bramblewick, Robin Hood’s Bay. Sadly, the restaurant is one of the many hospitality casualties of the pandemic, but the good news is that customers at the White Horse & Griffin can look forward to the team bringing a new look and a fresh new menu, along with the addition of an exciting new al fresco dining area.
White Horse & Griffin owner, Ed Henbury, has used lockdown to refresh, renew and re-energise this extremely popular coastal inn. He said: “There’s no escaping the fact that this has been a very challenging time for the hospitality industry. As small independent business owners, the last year has been a real struggle as we’ve had to pivot our businesses, lean heavily on the furlough scheme and business loans.
“It’s really sad that a fine restaurant such as the Bramblewick has had to close its doors but we’re delighted to welcome Michael and his Bramblewick team to the White Horse & Griffin. They’re the perfect fit for our style of fresh seafood, offering great service and value for money.
Michael Coates, now Head Chef at the White Horse & Griffin, said: “It was a very difficult decision not to reopen the Bramblewick Fish and Grill after the last lockdown, but after almost a year without any income, it was no longer financially viable. Joining Ed and his team is, however, a perfect match; the talented Bramblewick team will bring a new dimension to the White Horse & Griffin and Ed has provided us with the ideal setting in which to continue delivering the highest standards of cooking, using the best produce, served in a relaxed and unfussy style.
“We’ve curated a high quality but simple menu to kick us off and take us through what we hope will be the very busy summer ahead. Then, in the autumn, we’ll step it up once again to bring the full Bramblewick experience to Whitby.”
There’s already a buzz about the new pairing and lots of interest from customers keen to book their table at this historic coastal inn, which dates back to 1681 and was used as a meeting place for Captain James Cook and William Scoresby, to hire and fix their crews. The popular pub with rooms has taken full advantage of the current relaxation of the licensing rules and will be serving fizz and oysters together with plenty of ‘catch-of- the-day’ specials, every day until 9pm, weather permitting, of course.