Published: 06:00, 06 November 2020
| Updated: 10:39, 06 November 2020
A couple are over the moon after their Kent restaurant was awarded three coveted AA Rosettes.
The Hide and Fox, in Hythe , was opened in June last year by Allister Barsby and Alice Bussi, who have both worked in award-winning restaurants and hotels.
It serves two carefully crafted tasting menus, five or seven courses, as well as a hand selected wine list.
It is one of 26 restaurants across the country to be awarded the accolade by the AA in its latest round of Rosette Award winners.
Mr Barsby, 32, said: "It's amazing. We're only the fourth or fifth restaurant in Kent to be awarded three rosettes.
"It does feel good, especially it being our own restaurant. It feels right, and hopefully in a few years we might get another one..."
Head chef Mr Barsby, 32, who grew up in Chestfield, Whitstable , has worked with Michelin starred chefs across the country including Read’s Restaurant in Faversham under David Pitchford and at Gidleigh Park Hotel in Devon under Michael Caines.
He was also executive chef at Grove of Narberth in Pembrokeshire, Wales, where he maintained three rosettes.
Miss Bussi, from Italy, has worked in Tuscany, Switzerland and Germany and has a AIS Sommelier Diploma.
She worked at Bath Priory for four years, first as a sommelier, and then as restaurant manager, with Michelin starred Chef Sam Moody.
Despite only opening last year, Hide and Fox is now closing its doors for the second time as the country now enters lockdown again.
Mr Barsby, a former Archbishop's School, in Canterbury , student, said: "It's not ideal. But we're still going to be here when lockdown ends.
"We had a great first nine months when we initially opened, which helped us get through the first lockdown.
"It's just another hurdle."
AA Rosettes have been awarded to restaurants since 1956, with the top award of five Rosettes first introduced in 1991.
The multi rosettes are traditionally awarded in January and September each year, with success determined by one or more visits by an AA inspector to a hotel or restaurant.
They are awarded to restaurants achieving standards that demand national recognition beyond their local area.
Simon Numphud, managing director at AA Media said: "This has been an immensely difficult year for the hospitality industry, and yet restaurants across the country have continued to provide incredible dining experiences to the public despite these considerable challenges.
"The dedication and hard work of the teams behind these establishments is inspiring, particularly during this time, and we are pleased to be able to celebrate them with the announcement of these AA Rosettes.”