The Kingham Plough has an impressive reputation in the Cotswolds, despite its relatively young age. Since opening in 2007, chef proprietor Emily Watkins, together with her husband Miles Lampson, have built up a name for the boutique pub with rooms, based on an ethos that provenance is key to great food and this success is reflected in their numerous awards.
In 2015, the Kingham Plough was awarded its third AA Rosette, was placed 72nd in the top 100 restaurants in the National Restaurant Awards and to top it off, won the Oxfordshire Dining Pub of the Year in the Good Pub Guide for the second year running. Emily and her team had a busy 12 months to say the least.
“I’ve learnt an awful lot, not just as a chef but running the business as a whole,” she explains. “I think every day we have made better decisions, and invested in people who will bring a lot to the business.”
The six-bedroomed boutique property was Emily’s debut property and she has done extremely well to stand out in such a competitive region; The Kingham Plough strikes just the right balance between a ‘proper’ pub and an exceptional dining room.
The establishment really has given Emily a platform to bring to market new ideas, try new dishes and implement new concepts; last year she also transformed the kitchen to rely completely on induction cooking.
Emily makes the most of her fruitful surroundings when it comes to local sourcing and creates menus that incorporate the best produce the Cotswolds has to offer. She started her own farmers market in the car park of The Kingham, and now it takes place every May bank holiday, last year welcoming over 2,000 visitors.
In a bid to give drinks’ producers in the region their own fair share of the limelight, Emily launched the first ever Cotswolds Artisan Drinks Awards 2016 in January this year, demonstrating her passion for businesses in her community.
It’s clear that Emily’s passion and knowledge of different local dishes, alongside the development of her own style of modern British cuisine has helped put The Kingham Plough on the map.