It’s been fifteen years since we opened up our first restaurant, "Smiths of Sheffield” or “Smiths” as it was fondly called, on the site of what is now Artisan.
We bought it as “The Kashmir Palace", previous to that it had been the local Co-op! Money was tight for the refurbishment, but we did what we could with metres and metres of fabric to hide the artex walls!
With five years under our belt we then went onto transform the building into “Thyme”. At that point we had the bug of opening more places, so not long afterwards we opened “Thyme Cafe”, with Adrian Cooling, a long-time friend from college days. Not content with that, we branched out into Derbyshire to The Druids Inn at Birchover with Adrian, however we then sold that on to the head chef, who still runs it.
Inbetween this, Victoria and I had two boys, William and Thomas, but ever the “idea” man I continually viewed different buildings, small and large to see “what next” - A bit of consultancy? In fact a lot, up and down the country, event catering and, of course, my passion GOLF.
Eventually, with the “Thornbridge Brewery Boys”, Jim and Simon, we have now opened a “few” more sites.
It’s been a great 15 years back in my home town, I gained some great accolades, have been able to cook some fantastic food, met and made friends with many of my customers over the years, and without my wife and best friend Victoria, it would have been hard to achieve.
If you want to go down memory lane I will be cooking some of the favourite dishes from “Smiths” days on Monday 13th December at Crosspool. We are taking bookings now, but for more details telephone Artisan, or click here to view the menu.