Following the huge success of Andi Walker’s pop-up restaurant upstairs at the Riverside Inn in Chelmsford, Essex accomplished chef Andi is now set to take over the entirety of the restaurant in an exciting refresh of the seventeenth century mill. The establishment is part of The Blue Group which is owned by Steve Andrews, under whom Andi will be taking full control of the restaurant’s operation from January 2018, with a brand-new, bistro-inspired approach.
Local, seasonal food
Andi’s philosophy of using only the finest locally-sourced, seasonal produce will be transferred to the entire restaurant, which will be split into three distinct parts. The bar area will be for those wanting lighter refreshments, while the main gastro pub will continue to run downstairs. As for the upstairs of the restaurant, the fine dining cuisine will continue to be served. This will consist of a seven-course tasting menu which will change in line with the availability of local and seasonal produce. This opening will be followed by the launch of an exciting brunch menu in March.
Andi was a Masterchef the Professionals semi-finalist in 2015 and his culinary talents have certainly not gone unnoticed since. In September he was asked to host The Noise of Strangers Pop-up event in Leeds, as well as creating and serving an exclusive autumn menu at a fully-booked two-night event at Café Otto in central Paris. At the beginning of October, he also reached the finals in the Chef of the Year category at the Essex Life Food and Drink Awards, showing that his food has already made a considerable impact locally.
Throughout his career, Andi has worked in roles in several high-profile kitchens, including Head Chef at The Woodford and King’s College Cambridge, as well as working as part of the team at three-AA-rosette Tuddenham Mill in Suffolk. His impressive portfolio also includes training under world-renowned chef Anton Edelmann. However now he is excited to get his teeth stuck into his latest project at the Essex restaurant.
“I’m really excited to announce that in January 2018 I will be taking over The Riverside Inn, Chelmsford in its entirety.
Following the continued success of my pop-up restaurant on the top floor, it seems natural to make this a permanent fixture.
I’m also delighted to take over of the rest of The Riverside Inn and can’t wait to start serving amazing dishes in the pub downstairs.
We hope as an independent restaurant with local suppliers, the people in Chelmsford and the surrounding areas will get behind us and really enjoy what we are about to do.”