Header Image © The Ivy St Albans Brasserie
It's an understatement to say that the hospitality industry has faced a hard time during the Covid-19 pandemic, but with news that bars and restaurants will begin the process of opening their doors in some capacity from the 4th July, there is a small glimpse of light at the end of a very long dark tunnel.
One of the main perks of staying in a Portfolio Serviced Apartment is that you have access to your own fully equipped kitchen - making business travel more comfortable, cost effective, and in many ways more healthy than staying in a hotel. However, if you're temporarily working away from home, or perhaps at the beginning of a relocation, it's vital to explore your new surroundings, and being confined to eating alone in front of Netflix every night is simply not good for yours or your employee's mental wellbeing.
We're aware that the days of long working lunches, and after-office Friday cocktails might still be a long way off - but as we adjust to the 'new normal' we thought we'd look at some of our favourite dining spots in our Portfolio locations, that we can't wait to reopen. Things will be different for sure, but it's more important than ever to support local businesses in Hertfordshire and we will encourage all of our in-house guests to do the same.
Prime Steak & Grill | St Albans
Situated in the city centre, and a mere 5 minute walk from our Derbyshire House serviced apartments, Prime Steak & Grill is a must visit. The beef is sourced from an award winning butchers, appointed by Her Majesty the Queen, simply meaning the steaks are of the highest quality. Mix this with great service and a warm atmosphere and you have one of our favourite restaurants in St Albans.
Prime have announced on social media that: "We have spent the last few months adjusting our businesses and practices ready for today’s announcement that we can officially throw open our diaries from the 4th July onwards. And don’t you worry - it will still feel like Prime but we have tweaked a few things to make sure you and our teams are safe!" This is great news to hear and we can't wait to visit!
Rump & Wade | Stevenage
Based at the Cromwell Hotel on Stevenage High Street, Rump & Wade claim to "cook good, honest, flavourful food that is British at its heart", and to be honest we can't disagree. You could accuse us of favouring another steak specialist, but Rump & Wade also have excellent seafood dishes, and pride themselves in offering seasonal dishes that are locally sourced where possible - working closely with Stickleback fish suppliers in Welham Green to ensure they have the pick of the market as soon as the boats come in. They also home smoke their own salmon and source their pork from Dingley Dell farm which has a superb reputation for producing the highest quality meat. The Eggs Benedict is also highly recommended, so book in that brunch meeting as soon as you can.
Regarding reopening Rump & Wade have also stated on social media that they will be back on the 4th July. They will be announcing more details on their website soon, which is fantastic news to hear for both us and our Stevenage serviced apartment guests.
Cote Brasserie | Welwyn Garden City
The Cote Brasserie is just a 5 minute journey from our Welwyn Garden City serviced apartments at Times Square. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, our favourite restaurant in Welwyn succeeds in bringing that authentic Parisian Brasserie experience to Hertfordshire. The menu is vegetarian and vegan friendly, and the outside dining area is perfect for that summer day alfresco lunch.
At the time of writing there are no official statements regarding reopening that we can find, although their website does state that they are looking to reopen soon. Fingers crossed we can be back there before the end of summer!
The Ivy Brasserie | St Albans
Heading back to St Albans and just a 10 minute walk from our Derbyshire House serviced apartments, is another brasserie we can't wait to get back to. The Ivy St Albans offers a relaxed, yet sophisticated all-day dining experience, where the excellent food is matched by an enviable cocktail menu - meaning a quick lunch is almost an impossibility. That's not saying anything about the excellent service though, with the staff more than welcoming, friendly and attentive - it's just you won't be in a hurry to leave!
We can't see anything yet on a reopening date although their website states: "We’ve been busy behind the scenes to make sure we can deliver the beautifully prepared, seasonal dishes you love in surroundings that are stylish, sumptuous and safe. We’ll have an update on all the steps we’re taking to reassure you soon, as well as details of our menu."
Here Japan | Hatfield
If you like Japanese food and Sushi then this is a hidden gem, located a short walk away from our Hatfield town centre serviced apartments. Rated #5 of 57 restaurants on Trip Advisor, Here Japan offers an authentic Sushi experience, with excellent food at reasonable prices. It might not be for everyone, but if you love Japanese food then this is a must visit during your stay in Hatfield.
Here Japan has remained open for deliveries during the Coronavirus pandemic, but with the UK government announcing that restaurants can reopen from the 4th July we hope that they can be open to diners within some capacity soon.
So, the list could go on, but we thought we'd keep it to our top 5. Hertfordshire has a rich and diverse choice when it comes to eating out so I'm sure there are places that we have forgotten, and some we probably don't even know of. Be sure to let us know if we have missed your favourite restaurant, pub or bar - we'd be glad to hear some recommendations and pass these on to our Portfolio Serviced Accommodation guests.