Craig Atchinson on why he wants to win York a Michelin star

By Sophie Witts contact

- Last updated on GMT

Could Hudson's by Craig Atchinson win York a Michelin star?
The chef is relaunching his ambitious restaurant, Hudson’s by Craig Atchinson, alongside Craig Rogan (son of L'Enclume restaurateur Simon Rogan) this month.

The restaurant is situated within The Grand Hotel & Spa, York's first five-star hotel.

What’s changed at Hudson’s?

Hudson’s used to be the The Grand's main restaurant but the ongoing £15-£20m refurbishment of the hotel​ has given us the opportunity to take it to the next level. We’re reducing the covers from 60 to 28 and moving to a tasting menu only. Hudson’s used to do afternoon tea and corporate bookings but now we’re closing Monday and Sunday and will only open for dinner, so we won’t have any distractions. It is still a part of The Grand but is now more of a standalone restaurant.

What’s on the menu?

It’s a nine-course menu priced at £70 to start with. The food will be in the same British/European style as before and is quite interactive with front-of-house staff finishing a lot of dishes off tableside. Our stone bass with fennel puree, roasted langoustines and buckwheat comes with a bisque that is poured at the table. Other dishes include Duke of York potato with lovage, shallots and roasted chicken skin; and the star of the show is the beef strip loin with oxtail barley, ceps and different takes of onion.

How has the dining room changed?

The old Hudson’s space has been replaced by an executive lounge so the restaurant has moved next door. We've pulled up the flooring to reveal a beautiful herringbone parquet wood floor and we are working with a local potter to create vases to display wild and foraged herbs on the tables.

Hudson's-2

How is Craig Rogan involved with the project?

He is my deputy and will be in the kitchen everyday controlling standards and helping develop the dishes. Hudson’s is in my name but I also oversee all the hotel’s restaurants, so Craig will be running it as if it is his own. There is a great level of trust between us, as you can image he’s got a very solid background and has cooked at L’Enclume and The French, so he’s certainly the right person for the job.

You’re quite ambitious about Hudson’s…

Because of the size of the restaurant and reduced service period we are aiming for Michelin, and they have shown some interest. We achieved our third AA rosette last year and are hoping to elevate the restaurant to four rosettes within the next 18 months. Obviously we have to deliver that quality, but the sky is the limit and we want to take it all the way. Without arrogance, we want to be the best restaurant in York. It is a real goal for the management team here and they have given us the tools to hopefully deliver that.

Hudson's-dish

What else is changing at the hotel?

Our other 130-cover restaurant The Rise opened on 1 June and is a more relaxed, small plates concept. The Grand is York’s only five-star hotel, and it is opening another 100 bedrooms at that level.

What was your background before The Grand?

I have mostly worked in four or five-star hotels with high-profile restaurants, including Seaham Hall, Cotswold House and Swinton Park. I also spent a couple of years on the Isle of Wight at The Hambrough Hotel – which went on to win a Michelin star.

Hudson's by Craig Atchinson reopens on 22 August.

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