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Llangoed Hall celebrates place in UK’s Top 50 restaurants

We are delighted to have been given a place in the Waitrose Good Food Guide's top 50 UK restaurants for 2016.

Llangoed Hall celebrates place in UK’s Top 50 restaurants

August 26, 2015

“Brilliant news. I knew we could do it.” That was the reaction of delighted managing director Calum Milne after discovering that Llangoed Hall at Llyswen, near Brecon had been given a place in the Waitrose Good Food Guide’s top 50 UK restaurants for 2016.

Llangoed Hall is the only new entry from Wales and at 36 in the guide is rated ahead of some established Michelin star restaurants. The other Welsh entries are Restaurant James Sommerin, Glamorgan at 24 and Ynyshir Hall, near Machynlleth at 34. 

The guide was first published in 1951 to list "600 places throughout Britain where you can rely on a good meal at a reasonable price". It still relies on reader feedback of eateries up and down the country together with anonymous inspections by a team of experts.

Mr Milne praised the work of head chef Nick Brodie and his brigade of talented, young chefs for putting Llangoed Hall’s restaurant on the map by raising the standard of food served up at the five star Wye Valley country house hotel.

“When Nick was recruited we developed a five year plan for the restaurant and I am delighted to report that we are currently two years ahead of our projections,” he revealed.

“The original business plan has been replaced by a new five year plan, which will hopefully see Llangoed Hall achieve even more awards for culinary excellence.

“In the last year, we have installed a new £125,000 kitchen and recruited more staff from Michelin star establishments, which demonstrates that we have no desire to stand still. We aspire to be the very best we can be.”

Mr Brodie was ecstatic to wake up to the news. “I am proper chuffed and it’s a very happy occasion for the whole team at Llangoed Hall. It’s great that all our hard work is now being noticed and it drives us on to achieve even more accolades.

“I really do think that it’s just the start because there is so much more we can achieve here due to the huge amount of effort that the chefs in the kitchen put in. We work as a close team, which I think makes a difference.

“To get to this stage in just two and a half years is down to the amazing support that I have had from Calum, who has given me free rein. In a lot of places chefs are restricted what they can do, but here it has been an open book.

“Llangoed Hall is the best place I have ever worked. It took me four years to find this position, which is testament to how good I thought it was going to be.”

Last year, Llangoed Hall’s restaurant was upgraded to three rosettes at the AA Hospitality Awards in London, where the hotel gained recognition in the notable wine list of the year. 

The hotel was also named The Sunday Times Country House of the Year 2014-’15 and achieved a double in The Good Hotel Guide 2015 for Great Britain and Ireland by being named in the guide’s top 10 Editor’s Choice country house and historic hotels.

These latest accolade is added to the coveted Condé Nast Johansens Best Restaurant accolade for Great Britain and Ireland, AA Hotel of the Year for Wales  and Inspectors Choice 4 Red Stars, the AA’s supreme accolade, all achieved in 2014.

The awards highlight a remarkable transformation of the historic property’s fortunes in the last three years. Mr Milne rescued Llangoed Hall from administration in July 2012 with the intention of guiding it back to the top of the UK’s hospitality industry.

A £3 million refurbishment has taken place, retaining the influence of the late Sir Bernard Ashley, co-founder of the Laura Ashley fashion brand, who restored Llangoed Hall from a parlous state in the 1980s.