Suffolk: Foodie success for The Auberge, Yaxley and Emmett’s Store, Peasenhall

TWO gourmet Suffolk outlets have joined celebrity chef Heston Blumenthal in scooping prestigious foodie accolades.

The Auberge in Yaxley and Emmett’s Store in Peasenhall have been recognised by Gourmet Britain, an online resource for food lovers.

Both have beaten the odds to win, as Gourmet Britain judges admitted, because of the Olympics, they had focused on London to find winners.

The Auberge won the best bed and breakfast or restaurant with rooms category for its ‘excellent creature comforts, service and food’.

Emmett’s Store, which dates back to 1820 and is famous for its smoked ham and bacon, triumphed in the best independently-owned shop section.

Jon Stenhouse, who runs The Auberge with his parents John and Dee and sister Helena, said it was great to receive such recognition.

“Because we’ve been here so long, we’re consistent and hopefully of a high standard,” he added. “My dad is the chef and my mother and I are front of house. Lots of regulars come to us because we’re a family-run business and it’s a nice social interaction, you get a nice friendly face. The food is of a high standard too and we have had two AA rosettes since 2003.”

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Emmett’s Stores owner Mark Thomas, whose CV includes a spell at Harrods, welcomed the accolade.

“I have always had a passion for food, so we source food producers from Suffolk,” he said. “It does not have to be organic, but it has to taste good; that’s the key. It’s getting more and more competitive out there, but there’s no reason why we can’t continue to thrive.”

Other award winners included Dinner by Heston Blumenthal in London for best restaurant; Waitrose for best mail order or home delivery supplier; and Bistro Savoir Faire, London, for best cafe or budget restaurant.