The Queensberry Hotel
Chris Cleghorn at Bath’s Olive Tree restaurant is delighted to retain the city’s only Michelin star
In what has been a difficult period for the hospitality industry as a whole, the team at Bath’s Queensberry Hotel is delighted to announce that it has retained its Michelin Star for The Olive Tree Restaurant, set within the boutique hotel. The star was awarded to head chef, Chris Cleghorn back in October 2018, after many years of hard work, creativity, dedication and faith - and it remains Bath’s only Michelin Star.
Despite the tribulations of 2020 and beyond, the fiercely independent hotel and restaurant has received a host of prestigious industry recognition, including the accolade of Independent Hotel of the Year at the industry ‘Oscars’, the 2020 Cateys Awards. Now the team can toast another success for 2021 after officially retaining their Star within the Great British and Ireland Michelin Guide 2021.
Michelin is a globally-recognised brand. The UK and Ireland are home to just 180 Michelin star restaurants - 158 hold one star, 20 have two and seven hold three. The Olive Tree is now the only restaurant in Bath, and one of only 118 outside London, to hold a Michelin star.
Chris Cleghorn is 36 and has been The Olive Tree’s head chef for eight years, having joined after working with some of the UK’s best chefs, including James Sommerin and Michael Caines. The award and retention of the star is testament not just to his skills and creativity, but to the hard work, tenacity and leadership he’s shown in the kitchen for all this time.
Chris said, “It is almost impossible to put into words what it means to me as a chef to be recognised by Michelin yet again with a star for The Olive Tree. The last twelve months have been incredibly difficult for the industry all round, we have had to close three times, furlough staff and continually adapt to the ever-changing Covid requirements, so this feels even more significant. Then, as is well known, we had an extremely unfortunate fire which took out our kitchen! So yet again, this reward reflects the years of dedication and hard work that we have all collectively, and continually, put in behind-the-scenes to create our own individuality on the UK restaurant scene.”
Chris continued, “Looking to the future, when it is safe for us to reopen, the team and I want to enjoy what we have achieved, but at the same time we will continue to evolve every single day. We want to push ourselves all the time, creating outstanding menus and memorable experiences that our guests can enjoy, working with our exceptional local suppliers and their excellent produce. We never rest on our laurels.”
"We want to push ourselves all the time, creating outstanding menus and memorable experiences that our guests can enjoy, working with our exceptional local suppliers and their excellent produce. We never rest on our laurels.”
The star tells the story of Chris’s talents and tirelessness, but it’s also evidence of the backing and faith of Laurence and Helen Beere, the couple who own The Queensberry Hotel, of which The Olive Tree forms such a crucial component. Since their recruitment of Chris over eight years ago, they have consistently backed his vision and travelled every occasionally-arduous mile with him.
Laurence said, “We are immensely proud of Chris and the whole of our team within The Olive Tree for yet again being recognised in the prestigious Michelin Guide. After what can only be described as ‘a bit of a time of it’ for us, receiving this amazing accolade provides a real boost for all of us. Despite the challenges the restaurant team has faced this year, Chris has led them through with the most relentless commitment and for that, we are eternally grateful. We are very much looking forward to reopening our doors and for all to enjoy the utmost quality and finest experience of our Michelin Star-awarded establishment!”
Laurence and Helen bought the Queensberry Hotel and Olive Tree in 2003 following a career with The Savoy and Cliveden. For the past 18 years, the couple has worked relentlessly to create the four-AA-star, 29-bedroom property, investing a substantial £1.3m in the last four years to place it continually at the forefront of the boutique hotel market in Bath. During that time, the Beeres have battled the 2008/2009 recession, the 2020/21 Covid-19 pandemic as well as a major fire during the first lockdown. Yet despite the tests, they continue to come off on top, stronger and more award-winning than ever!
To find out more about Bath’s only Michelin star-awarded restaurant, The Olive Tree Restaurant, visit the website at: https://olivetreebath.co.uk/. To discover more about the Queensberry Hotel, see: https://www.thequeensberry.co.uk/