It’s been 2 years since Knight & Garter opened its doors, transforming the former site of Molly O’Grady’s into one of Leicester’s best pub and restaurants. Now, the hard work has paid off as they’ve been named East Midlands Pub of the Year at the National Pub & Bar Awards.
We caught up with the man behind The Beautiful Pubs Collective, Sam Hagger, to find out more.
You’ve recently been awarded East Midlands Pub of the Year for the Knight & Garter, what do you think it is that’s really set the venue apart?
I think it’s a combination of the teams ambition, the consistency of guests experiences & probably the amount of polish we get through.
You’ve been open now for a couple of years, has the bar and restaurant progressed in the way you initially planned and hoped for?
Knight & Garter was always going to big challenge, there was lots of initial hurdles for us to navigate round, but things are definitely improving & it really makes us smile that we are finally developing regular guests.
At Knight & Garter you have both a great bar and food offering, which do you think you’ve become best known for over the past 2 years – food or drinks?
I’d love to believe it’s strong mix of both, but ultimately I think we are judged on our food & as result this has driven us to continue developing our food style over the past 24 months.
What are some of the standout items on your menu?
Well our new seasonal menu is about to launch, but on our current menu it has to be the quality of our Burrata on one of our starters & the lobster cream served with our Fish & King Prawn Pie.
Knight & Garter also has a wonderful private space downstairs called The Gallery, do you have exciting things planned for that space over the coming months?
The Gallery is our ‘special place’ because it is so versatile, private parties continue to be a big focus for us because the team find customising peoples events are an exciting challenge, but for me it’s the regular hosted Winery Tasting Dinners that people should be looking out for!
You’re very fortunate to have such a wonderful terrace space, which overlooks the New Market Square. If you could see any event put onto the square, what would it be?
With the works to back of the Corn Exchange nearing compilation I would love to see Wimbledon on the big screen with interactive activities like table tennis on the square! I think that would be really fun!
You’ve been involved in hospitality in Leicester for a few years now with the Rutland & Derby in the city as well, how do you think Leicester has changed over the last 5 years or so?
Leicester has evolved so much since I took The R&D over 9 years ago, in the last 5 years in particular it’s been great to see the return of visitors moving around the city again. The sun is shining today & everywhere I have been there has been a great atmosphere. It’s a becoming a fantastic city again!
Right, so you wake up on a Sunday, what do you want – brunch or roast dinner?
It has to be brunch! Accompanied by Bloody Marys or Bottomless Mimosas!
Where are some of your other favourite bars and restaurants in Leicester?
I quite like an early doors drink in the garden at Café Bruxelles if the sun is shining, but if I’m going out for dinner, it has to be OGGI Simply Itliann on London Road, their chefs specials are always amazing & the service fantastic!
How can people find out more about Knight & Garter?
Simply search Knight & Garter online or @Knightandgarter on socials
If you want to check out the menu and plan your visit head over to the Knight & Garter website.