Town has recipe for success

Phil Cantwell at the opening of his new restaurant EMN-150712-162459001
Phil Cantwell at the opening of his new restaurant EMN-150712-162459001

Restaurant owners in Horncastle should ‘shout out more’ about the town’s vibrant dining out scene amid claims it is a match for any in the county.

That is the opinion of Phil Cantwell who has just opened his extended Thai Dining Room, in West Street.

Mr Cantwell has increased capacity at his restaurant to 36 covers and created five new jobs.

And those figures should increase next Spring when Mr Cantwell intends to offer ‘riverside’ dining on an outside terrace.

He said: “Horncastle has a vibrant restaurant scene.

“There are some great places to eat, offering an excellent range of food at excellent prices.

“We get terrific support from residents - and from people from further afield.

“However, I think it is fair to say not everyone is aware of the quality available.

“Perhaps we (restaurant owners) need to do something about it.

“Perhaps we need to shout out more about the standard on offer.”

Mr Cantwell said he was delighted with the response to his new venture.

He has moved a few yards from his former premises in West Street to the site of a former bookshop.

He added: “The old place was simply not big enough and that’s the reason behind the move.

“Like anything else, it is a gamble but I believe the business is there to support a bigger place.

“We have been very busy since we opened. Bookings for the rest of the month and into the New Year are very good.

“The support from residents - and from other businesses - has been fantastic.

“In fact, it is great that we are starting to see some businesses working together to promote everything that’s good about the town.

“For example, we are working very closely with Shakesby’s.

“People will say that’s a rival restaurant but it offers a totally different style of food.

“There are a lot of things we can share with each other.”

Mr Cantwell revealed his business drew in customers from far a wide.

He said regulars included people from Skegness, Immingham, and even Stamford.

The Thai Dining Room has won several awards in recent months and currently tops the town’s ratings on Trip Advisor.

Other highly ranked town-based establishments include Shakesby’s, Magpies, Captain and Cook, The Old Stables, and Montebello.

Locally, the Blue Bell Inn in Belchford has just won an award for the best pub in the county - beating off competition from several rivals.