Almost a hundred movers and shakers from across the region enjoyed good company and fine food at a very special event to help mark 20 years of Hart’s restaurant in the city.
Against a magical backdrop of twinkling lights and woodland foliage, guests at the exclusive event took the opportunity to don black tie and enjoy mouthwatering dishes matched with wines specially selected for the occasion by owner Tim Hart.
Guests included renowned food writer, critic and Great British Menu judge Matthew Fort and The Rt Hon The Lord Norman Fowler along with some of the previous head chefs and front of house team who have helped shape the restaurant into the foodie destination it is today.
With strains of classical piano playing in the background, guests were treated to canapes of Queen scallops with fennel and samphire, tuna carpaccio, chicken liver parfait and Lincolnshire poacher gougere, all served with Champagne Rene Beaudouin.
To follow, head chef Dan Burridge served up braised Jacob’s ladder beef, an underused but flavoursome cut that is cooked long and slow, producing meltingly tender results. Dessert was a traditional custard tart but, as you would expect from a restaurant of Hart’s calibre, the end result was anything but conventional. A light rhubarb sorbet provided a sharp contrast to the creamy filling and crisp pastry case, which was perfectly matched with a 2014 Monbazillac Domaine L’Ancienne Cure Jour des Fruits.
Ever the charismatic host, Tim Hart took to the floor to rapturous applause, giving a heartfelt speech which demonstrated exactly why Hart’s has gained such a reputation for delighting customers. Thanking guests for attending, he entertained with lighthearted anecdotes about his Nottingham restaurant career; a fascinating insight into what it takes to remain at the top of your game after two decades.
He said, “It is thanks to a great many people that we stand here today – from Lord Norman Fowler who helped find the site, to Tim Mcartney who designed the restaurant and the team who worked so tirelessly in the early days to set the high standards by which we still operate. And of course the people of Nottingham, who have supported us so enthusiastically from the start – thank you.”
Nick Ebbs, chief executive of Blueprint then led a toast to the restauranteur and his wife, Stefa, congratulating them on the milestone anniversary and acknowledging what an asset Hart’s is to the city of Nottingham and its residents.
Nick added, “Tim and Stefa are held in high regard and great affection not just by the people in this room tonight but by people across Nottingham. Hart’s is a special place and brings something special to our city; it has become part of the city’s infrastructure – a place where you know you will always get the finest of food and welcomes.
“The fact that Tim and Stefa chose to mark this milestone by packing the restaurant full, feeding, wining and entertaining their friends and contacts perfectly demonstrates who they are and the generosity they have always displayed.”
The anniversary party is just one of a series of events taking place this year to mark the restaurant’s 20th year. To be kept up to date with plans, please follow @HartsNottingham on Twitter, @Hartsnotts on Instagram or sign up to the newsletter via the website www.hartsnottingham.co.uk.