3 Rosettes 2011 – 2017
Phil Fanning’s culinary production is full of ingeniously fresh fusion ideas, bringing Asian influences to bear on a modern British. The attention to detail throughout is astonishing, and the wine flights worth the extra for a carefully-selected roll call of matching flavours.
1 Michelin Star 2011 – 2016
Creative & Intimate – Cooking is a mix of Asian dishes and British classics given ambitious modern makeovers.
Abandon humdrum expectations of a country-house experience; all the comfortable accoutrements of a modern restaurant are here – undressed, polished tables, wood floors, Tiffany blue velvet chairs, heritage grey walls, simple tableware – while Phil Fanning’s cooking is at the very forefront of modern British cuisine, his various tasting menus heady with Asian influences.
2017 Best Fine Dining Restaurant
The Bedfordshire Food & Drink Awards 2017 highlighted some of the most splendid culinary treasures from across our plentiful county.
Paris House is a regular winner of the Open Table Diners’ Choice Award. These awards are designed to celebrate top-rated restaurants and winners are selected based on real feedback shared by diners on the Open Table website.
Rated 15/20 – 2014 Service was excellent: friendly and capable. I enjoyed the inventive cooking at Paris House, its young kitchen team clearly having considerable talent.
Phil Fanning – 2011
In the 28 years since Caterer began recognising the brightest talent in hospitality, just 810 people who work in the industry have ever earned the right to attach the words “Acorn Award Winner” to their CV, in a sector that employs almost two million. Many of those, including such stellar names as Marco Pierre White, Marcus Wareing and Michael Caines, have gone on to become major figures in the industry.
“Michelin Star Chef Phil Fanning is one of the bright young things in the British food scene. His style is distinctly contemporary, without falling into the trap of being modern for the sake of being modern and he tempers his classical French roots with far-reaching ingredients and an eye for theatrical mischief.”
“Our special guest, Phil Fanning is a Michelin-Starred Chef and runs masterclasses in foraging for foods and seeking out natures hidden tasty treats…”
February 2016 – Restaurant Review
“Paris House portrays an importance of working with fresh, seasonal ingredients which as a whole underpins their whole gourmet philosophy.”
“Set in a 22-acre deer park, this Michelin-starred restaurant is running a summer garden tasting menu full of herbs, edible flowers and vegetables harvested on-site. We’re excited by the mackerel with oyster leaf, dill and cucumber, as well as the leeks with parsley oil and leafy celery.”
March 2015 – Restaurant Review: Guardian Soulmates
“The courses are choreographed and presented before you with the skill of a theatre performance, and it’s not just this display that is impressive but the wonderful fusion of flavours. The food is an exciting mixture of internationally themed dishes concocted from unusual ingredients found locally”
“Chef Phil Fanning is one of the bright young things in the British food scene, he began cooking at an early age and even made an appearance on Junior Masterchef as a finalist in 1997. His style is distinctly contemporary, without falling into the trap of being modern for the sake of being modern. He tempers his classical French roots with far-reaching ingredients and an eye for theatrical mischief. ” – Great British Chefs
In her career Claire has worked for some of the countries finest restaurants and industry figures, including Tom Kerridge’s two Michelin Starred Hand and Flowers and Heston Blumenthal’s Hind’s Head in Bray. This experience coupled with her love for fine food and wine and a passion for top quality service makes her an inspirational figurehead for the team at Paris House.
Born in Staffs, but with Scottish roots, Natalie worked for Cameron House Hotel on the banks of Loch Lomond as Assistant Restaurant Manager over 3 sites. Since then she has honed her administrative skills in several roles before bringing her happy smiley self back to the hospitality industry.
Natalie loves clay pigeon shooting, wine drinking and horse-riding – but not all at once!
Originally from Gdansk in Poland, Jarek graduated from Marine Academy before working on cruise ships travelling the world. He came to the UK in 2005 to run Ty’n Rhos Hotel in Wales. Since then he’s worked for Wickham Vineyards, Thackeray’s & Chapter One.
Jarek loves sailing, climbing and cooking.
Born in Yorkshire and brought up in Oxfordshire, Jo spent 10 years working in creative agencies before spending another 12 in retail working in various roles from Brand and Commercial Marketing to Store Branding & Design. She took the leap away from big corporate business 2 years ago and hasn’t looked back.
Jo loves food & wine, holidays, her two children, apostrophes and her husband – in that order!
Anne-Laure joined us last July, having spent several years travelling and working in New Zealand, Paris and Devon. Originally from Brittany, Anne-Laure is now happily settled here in Bedfordshire. Since joining Paris House she has risen from Head Waitress to Assistant Restaurant Manager.
Her interests include reading, travelling and wine.
Ben is our Sous Chef and has been with us since September 2015, when he came in as a Junior Sous Chef. Although originally from Bedfordshire, Ben worked at The Latymer, a 2 Michelin starred restaurant in Surrey, as well as at The Sheraton Grand on London’s Park Lane before returning to his home county to join us at Paris House.
Carl first came to Paris House back in July 2017. He joined the team as a Chef de Partie and has risen quickly to Junior Sous Chef, with chief responsibility for pastry. Born in Ireland and raised in Wales, Carl developed his skills in Welsh pubs before moving onto restaurants in New Zealand and Southern England.
Carl is a music lover and plays the drums, he also loves his cats and a good glass of whisky.
Chris runs our garnish section and has been with us since January 2017. He is from Milton Keynes originally but worked in Oxford and London before heading back up here to join us on his home patch.
Dan joined us in November 2016. Dan runs our meat, fish and sauces section, He is passionate about Modernist cuisine and loves to read about it, as well as practise it here at Paris House.
Sebastian is from Argentina and runs our larder section, in charge of canapés, starters and savoury cold dishes. Before joining us in July 2017, he worked at the Argentinian Embassy and more recently at The Greenhouse, the 2 Michelin starred restaurant in Mayfair.
Georgie is a local girl, born and raised in Milton Keynes. She joined as Chef de Rang in March 2017. As well as having great front of house experience, Georgie knows her cocktails too. She is our resident expert and has hosted very popular cocktail masterclasses at two of our recent events.
This season Paris House is working with textile designer Amanda Cobbett, bespoke furniture designer Jane Crisp, the internationally acclaimed turner and sculptor Joey Richardson, Nick Barberton, a bespoke furniture maker, Clive Maddison, a scultpor who specialises in working with wire strands and Claire Malet a silversmith and metal artist – with future pieces coming soon from Penkridge Ceramics.
Paris House’s Head of Brand & Marketing says, “I am really keen to speak to local artists and craftsmen to get them involved in this space. Many of our guests are keen art lovers and our goal is to have a space that supports local craftspeople and creates a seasonally changing display that our guests will enjoy and ultimately buy from. I would encourage local artists to get in touch.”
Amanda Cobbett is an artist and professional textile designer with over 20 years of experience. Amanda trained as a printed textile designer at UAL Chelsea and is now based in the Surrey Hills.
Her love of mark making techniques which have evolved from paper into stitch are the basis from which each piece of work is created, this combined with colour, intricacy and composition all play their part in the creative process.
Each piece of work is displayed in a contemporary version of the Victorian display case which promises to amuse and delight!
Jane Crisp works from her home in her studio and new workshop surrounded by beautiful countryside in Hale Fen, Cambridgeshire.
She loves the qualities of natural materials like wool, wood, copper and brass and experiments with the mythologies of amplifying traditional techniques in a contemporary way.
Jane’s small batches of steam bent Ash Copper vessels form nature’s carriers or trugs. The inspiration for these practical and sculptural object comes from the Norfolk reeds and draws on her creative personal connections with local heritage and low tech processes. Her developed craft practise is inspired by historic boat building techniques and copper fixings.
Ash, brass and copper
Joey Richardson, an internationally acclaimed turner and sculptor, is renowned for her delicate and richly hued wood forms. Born in Lincolnshire, she grew upon a small farm. Here, surrounded by trees, her love for wood, fauna and flora developed.
Her unique sculptures are inspired by nature, life experiences and imagination. She works predominantly in the medium of wood, but often incorporates cast glass, metal and photography into her creations.
Whenever possible Joey uses reclaimed timber, personally sculpting each individual piece on a lathe, with the cutting, shaping and sanding all controlled with the eye. New innovative techniques; piercing, colour, texture and artwork are added for greater originality.
Reclaimed sycamore, acrylic colours
Clive Maddison’s trees are handmade from a number of single strand wires, twisted together, that run from the roots to the leaves. No glue, solder or other means are used to hold them together, it is purely down to the way the strands are twisted. The beauty of of this art is that no two sculptures are the same. There may be similarity of style between pieces, material used, or type of tree being represented, but the way they are made means that every sculpture will always be unique.
‘CM190’ is made with 158 metres of aluminium wire and is based on a Bonsai Tree in a pot mounted on a Spalted Beech wood base.
‘CM206’ is made with 360 metres of aluminium wire and is based on a Scarlet Oak Tree and mounted on a Limed Oak wood base.
Claire is Metal Artist & Silversmith, working in precious metals and found-metals. Her work is inspired by the textures and shapes of natural forms and landscapes: fragments of sea-worn shells, the rock form formations of a battered coastline, a curl of split bark, the dancing light and shadow of woodland, the line of a horizon. She also draws inspiration directly from the characteristics of the medium, working intuitively, allowing the metal to suggest a direction and to find a relationship with the subject matter.
Claire works from her studio in rural Herefordshire. Her pieces are exhibited in the UK and internationally in galleries, at exhibitions and art fairs. She has pieces in the permanent collections at The Victoria & Albert Museum and Manchester City Art Gallery.
Bircher Common Vessel,
24 carat gold
23 carat red gold,
*RFSC: Re-formed steel can
Green Meadow Bowl,
18 carat green gold, d.15cm – £890
18 carat green gold, d.10cm – £450
*RFSC: Re-formed steel can
Nick Barberton was born near Cape Town in 1946 and grew up in a seaside village. He went to Johannesburg College of Art where he gained a diploma in Industrial Design. He started work as a designer and draftsman but soon started working for himself making wooden furniture.
Through the ’70s and ’80s Nick worked building traditional Dutch Sailing Barges and yachts, a Craft teacher and an Occupational therapist. From 1987 he was a full time self employed woodworker making furniture and undertaking carvings to commission, turning wooden bowls for craft shops and Galleries.
Now based in Hampshire, Nick’s work is seen in Winchester Cathedral, Goodwood and the gates at Artsway. He took part in Chelsea Craft Fair 1999 to 2005 and Origin 2006-07 showing long carved vessels and was selected by the Crafts Council in 1999.
Nick is a wood advisor for The Craft Study Centre. He was an Artist in Residence at Schovenhorst in the Netherlands for the ‘Boom en Beeld’ wood carving festival in 2003. He was resident at the Jam Factory in Adelaide in 2007 where he developed the ‘Splash Stool’. He has shown at Chelsea Craft Fair, Origin, Made and Art in Action.
Paris House was originally built in 1878 as part of The Paris International Exhibition. The ‘Street of Nations’ was located on the Rue de Nations (next to the Quai d’Orsay) in Paris. It was bordered on each side by 28 pavilions representing 28 countries. Britain was represented by 5 houses, of which Paris House was one. Visitors entered the Grand Exhibition Hall through the front door of any one of these houses.
Paris House, designed by Gilbert Redgrave and built by William Cubbitt & Son, was based on the Renaissance half-timbered architecture of the Cheshire region of England and was erected in prefabricated sections of the Tudor style and pegged together. The 9th Duke of Bedford fell in love with the building, had it dismantled, shipped piece by piece to its current home and rebuilt in the stunning grounds of the Woburn Estate. Here, it was extended and made into a usable home.
On arrival at Woburn the building was mainly used as accommodation for staff of the Abbey. Duchess Mary Russell of Bedford, the wife of the 11th Duke, also used it as a hospital and it soon became affectionately known locally as the ‘Tonsil Hospital’. The Duchess, known as “The High Flying Duchess” because of her passion for planes, invited a pilot who had rescued her when she crashed her plane in to the desert, to use the house. He lived there until 1937 when, at the age of 71, the Duchess disappeared after leaving Woburn Abbey in a De Havilland Gipsy Moth plane, which crashed into the North Sea.
During the Second World War the house played host to many notable guests including the Queen Mother’s brother, King George VI, Queen Elizabeth (as she was then), General de Gaulle and Dennis Sefton Delmer – Director of Special Operations during the war and the first British journalist to interview Hitler.
There is a bomb shelter in the back garden that is said to have been built for Winston Churchill as a bolt hole from his work at nearby Bletchley Park. There is also rumoured to be an underground tunnel connecting the two – but this is yet to be proven!
In the years that followed, Paris House enjoyed a colourful culinary history. In 1983 it was acquired by Peter Chandler, the first English apprentice to celebrated chefs Albert and Michel Roux.
The new Paris House opened under the 10 in 8 Group in February 2010 under the culinary leadership of Executive Chef, Phil Fanning. In 2013 Phil and his wife Claire took over the ownership of the restaurant. A full refurbishment of the kitchen and dining rooms followed in Spring 2017, injecting new life into Paris House and bringing it back to its former glory.