Meet our first Champion for Edible Norfolk
Published: Monday 1st Aug 2016
Written by: Norfolk Champion
Who? Richard Bainbridge, Chef and Owner of Benedicts restaurant in Norwich
What? Benedicts is located on trendy St Benedicts Street in Norwich. Benedicts is a contemporary bistro with classic values, serving modern sophisticated food in a relaxed environment. Run by husband and wife team Richard and Katja, who pride themselves on using local produce and working with the most wonderful local suppliers and hard-working farmers and growers.
Let's find out more about our true advocate of all things edible...
How long have you lived in Norfolk? If not born here, what brought you here?
I am lucky enough to be born and bred in Norfolk, but like so many North Norfolk Boys, we leave as soon as we can and before too long we all come running back in the end.
Explain the story behind your business…
Originally from Norwich, it was always my dream to open a restaurant in Norwich and in June last year it suddenly came true. Over the years I have worked all over the world in some of the most influential kitchens under amazing mentors such as the Roux Brothers, Kevin Thornton and Galton Blackiston to name a few. After being head chef at the Michelin-starred Morston Hall Hotel for seven years, it naturally became time for me and my wife to open our own restaurant. Benedicts was the first and last we looked at… we fell in love just walking through the door and after a full refurbishment and with an amazing ever-growing, dedicated team, we strive to do our very best every single day.
What gets you up in the morning?
EASY! Making my daughter proud.
Describe a perfect weekend in Norfolk…
My perfect weekend is spent with my beautiful wife and baby girl. First bacon sandwiches in Sheringham followed by a walk on the beach. Going to a local event in north Norfolk (perhaps the ‘Fairy Fair’, ‘Dubs at the Hall’ or just a good old fashioned car boot) then back home for a BBQ in the garden, bath-time and stories before bed. Bottle of wine with my wife with a DVD, then bed.
List your top five things about Norfolk…
Produce, People, Beers, Big Skies and Coast Line.
Which season do you think Norfolk is at its best and why?
Summer, as the coastline really comes to life. The joys are endless - picking Samphire at Morston Quay, fish and chips at Sheringham Beach, crabbing off Cromer Pier, picnics in fields and meadows, collecting shells and pebbles on the beach, woodland walks, cool beers in country pubs and soaking up the sun on Wells beach.
Norfolk has a 93-mile coastline. Which is your favourite beach and what is so special about it?
It has to be Weybourne beach, it’s the closest to our home and if we want a little sea air that’s the one we go to all the time. There is a wonderful cliff walk from the beach leading past a beautiful windmill. It’s magical.
Where are we most likely to find you enjoying a meal with friends and family?
Hmmmmmmm let me think? I hear BENEDICTS is a great place to go!
Where in Norfolk do you like to spread out a blanket and enjoy a hearty picnic whilst soaking up the view?
At a little place we found miles away from anyone with a beautiful view over the rolling landscape of this amazing county. All I’ll say is… it’s near Binham.
Last, but by no means least, what’s your best-kept Norfolk secret (supposing you’re happy to share it!)?
Now that would be telling, but all you need to know is that I would not live anywhere else.
To find out more or book a table visit their website.