St Albans pub forages place in Good Food Guide

PUBLISHED: 06:07 16 August 2012

Landlords Gerald Waldeck and George Fredenham with head chef Tommy Forester.

Landlords Gerald Waldeck and George Fredenham with head chef Tommy Forester.

Archant

FORAGING for food has not only created a successful restaurant business for two local men – it has also won them a place in The Good Food Guide.

Former Verulam School student George Fredenham and Gerald Waldeck, who lives in Harpenden, set up The Foragers at The Verulam Arms in Upper Dagnall Street, St Albans, just 22 months ago.

It is built around the concept of wild food which George, Gerald and their team forage, fish and shoot for themselves and serve up on their menu.

And so successful has The Foragers been that it is one of only two new additions in Herts to appear in next year’s The Good Food Guide.

A delighted George, who applied for admission to The Good Food Guide in April, said that the focus of The Foragers was on resourcefulness – mending, fixing and making things with a strong recycling philosophy.

They have even agreed with the local allotment community to introduce regular bartering sessions for produce which will go on to a menu which is big on such dishes as game, fish, pigeon, hogweed and mushrooms.

George, a former London city worker who had travelled around a lot in a sales job, decided he would like to set up his own food business after graduating from market stalls across London where he sold oil.

He was introduced to Gerald, a baker’s son, and recognised a kindred spirit. He knew that the two were destined to work together shortly after they first met when they went for a walk and Gerald, “couldn’t stop looking at mushrooms.”

Although the Verulam Arms is not the largest of pubs, it can do 46 covers of an evening and is usually fully booked most Friday and Saturday nights.

And George does not rule out more Foragers at some time in the future. He said: “A lot of celebrity chefs are using foraging ingredients but we are trying to include those items as an integral part of our dishes.”

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