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Liverpool chef Paul Askew celebrates as The Art School Restaurant is listed in Good Food Guide 

2 weeks ago

Liverpool chef Paul Askew celebrates as The Art School Restaurant is listed in Good Food Guide 
Paul Askew

Liverpool chef Paul Askew is celebrating after his fine dining restaurant has been added to The Good Food Guide.

Paul Askew, who is chef patron of the popular Sugnall Street venue, says it is a huge boost for him and his team, as well as the city.

“It shows that our regulars and the diners who come here still feel that we’re relevant, that we’re still doing great food, and it’s a great thing for the team,” he says.

“The last three years in hospitality, you don’t have to be Sherlock Holmes to realise that it hasn’t been fun to say the least. It’s been tough.

“So the team has got a real boost from this, and it’s great for me as the chef patron because it gives me the realisation that our followers are still supporting us. After the three years it’s a real shot in the arm for us. We are thrilled.”

The Good Food Guide was founded in 1951 and remains the longest-standing and best-selling guide to dining out in Britain.

It’s been transformed from its original book into a new digital app which means it can be constantly updated, but its impartiality remains paramount.

Paul Askew
Paul Askew

After tip-offs and suggestions from members, it sends one of its 30 inspectors anonymously to give an expert assessment on the food and hospitality at restaurants to decide ‘whether it’s worth making a trip for’ before including it in the guide.

It’s not the first time Paul and the restaurant have been included in The Good Food Guide, but he says: “The Good Food Guide stopped for a while after Covid. They used to print it as a book and we’d all wait for its release, and now it’s all online.

“What’s happened, and why we are really pleased, is that we didn’t even know if The Good Food Guide was going to continue or not, and then it went out to the public to say vote for your local restaurant, your favourite restaurant; and so the beauty is that the reviews are essentially by regular punters.

“These are real reviews from humans who go out to dine. It’s not just about an inspector or people who are paid to do a ‘mystery shop’, it’s a very open and honest publication which is why a lot of chefs really like it because it gives you a true barometer of where you’re at. It’s a very credible publication – and one of the top four along with the AA Guide, The Michelin Guide, and Hardens in the UK. 

The Art School
The Art School

“It was nice to see we were straight back in with nice reviews. It shows we have been voted for by our regulars and that’s why we’re there. That’s a reason for celebration.”

Paul says it’s huge for the city too.

“It’s lovely that it’s come out at the same time as article from Time Out magazine that puts Liverpool as number 11 in the best foodie cities in the world. Hospitality needs all the support it can get right now.”

Paul has also just returned from Bordeaux in France where he spent five days with Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram after Liverpool was invited to be guest city, ‘which is the most significant thing for food and drink development in the city. We have been working on it since 2017’!

Credit: The Art School
Paul Askew plates up Credit: The Art School

“I was responsible for curating the Fete le Vin Bordeaux launch lunch at the town hall in Bordeaux where we were banging the drum for Liverpool. The Fete le Vin is a mile-long wine tasting event with music, tall ships, and all sorts of spin-off events, and we were selected as one of five cities in the world to partner Bordeaux.

“We get to host Fete le Vin every two years and, of course, the Bordeaux Wine Festival will be back here next year.

“It’s about attracting tourism – and gastro tourism – to come to Liverpool from all over the world. We are doing a good job and it’s a result of the hard work we have put in.

“The sad thing is that we had about 2,000 restaurants in Liverpool and, since the financial crisis, that’s gone down to 1,300.

“So when you get things like The Good Food Guide and Bordeaux, these good pieces of news, we 100% cling to those because it gives us hope, and it gives us something to look positively into the future about.”

For more on Paul Askew and The Art School click here.

For the latest news in Liverpool click here.

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