Phil Vickery opens doors on Cheltenham restaurant
By Mark Owen | 22nd July 2020
He has achieved plenty of sporting dreams and now Rugby World Cup winner Phil Vickery has achieved another ambition - opening his own restaurant.
Coronavirus may have delayed it and forced him to open initially as a collection service, but it could not stop the former England and Gloucester captain.
No.3 has opened in Cheltenham, occupying the former Star Bistro premises in Royal Crescent.
He said: "It's just nice to have something open physically.
"We've all been affected by the virus but to be able to do what we've done as a team, to finally be able to realise a dream and start that process, I feel genuinely, really, really proud.
"The one thing I have learned is if you've got good people with the right intentions, the right values and wanting to do the right things, then you are going to give yourselves a chance."
The Celebrity MasterChef winner has teamed up with chef Tom Rains and his wife Jules running the back of house, alongside restaurant manager Elliott Camm, all of whom include The Daffodil in Cheltenham on their CV.
"Things are tough but we've got to get ourselves out of this and we've got to be positive," he said. "I try to be as positive as I can and with that positive energy, the hope is good things will happen.
"I believe we live in one of the most amazing places in the country, we've got fantastic business, our towns, our food, our producers, technology, architecture, we live in an amazing county. Let's showcase Gloucestershire.
"I want this to be the start of something, I'm constantly looking for opportunities but we need to get going."
The restaurant has room for 26 covers inside with another 12 spaces available outside - and more to come in two private dining rooms upstairs.
"It's a work in progress, I want to start in phases," he said. "We've got the private dining rooms upstairs where I want to be able to entertain people and my Captain's Table.
"I've got a lot of friends who want to come along and help me out in the evenings, but we need to get going, get trading and looking after all our customers.
"I'll be spending as much time as I possible can there. It's something I've wanted to do for quite some time but I also knew I can't do anything on my own either. Nothing happens without my say so, it is my name, it is my restaurant."
As well as the restaurant, No.3 will continue to offer the collection service it launched in May.
"it progressed really well and I still want No.3 at Home to progress," he said. "We want to continue that takeaway menu as I firmly believe if you are an eating establishment and you don't have a menu that people can come in and take home to share with friends, you are crazy.
"Covid is not going anywhere quick. Having an offering people can take away is important and is something I want to do.
"We are going to have to work ourselves out of it. That comes from businesses, for strategies and incentives in terms of Government, but the biggest thing we can do as individuals is wanting to make a difference. We are going to be the ones who can get ourselves out of it and move on."
He continued" "It is firmly about right here, right now, telling people what it's all about and our value, my values which is all about celebrating good food.
"Doesn't matter if that's a Scotch egg, a piece of fillet steak, a bowl of soup or a sandwich, celebrate well made, well put together food from good producers with a fantastic supply chain and making people feel special and valued when they come into your establishment.
"If there are other opportunities that come along for us to have a look at and it sits right, I am keen to look at that.
"But that's not our focus. Our focus is about creating our brand No.3 and showing people what we stand for."
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