Published on November 11th, 2013 | by Alastair Gilmour0
Lambton Worm and The Italian Farmhouse’s sustainable success
The Lambton Worm and The Italian Farmhouse have been officially recognised as the most sustainable restaurants in County Durham, after both were awarded two-star ratings by the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA).
The ratings place the Chester-le-Street pub and the West Rainton restaurant alongside some of the highest-regarded restaurants in the UK – only just behind Raymond Blanc’s Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s River Cottage, both of which have three stars, the highest possible rating. The Sunday Times has called the SRA scheme the Michelin Stars of Sustainability.
Serving locally sourced, high welfare food and drink – including beer and herbs brewed and grown on-site as well using the owner’s own pigs – were among the many practices praised by the SRA’s assessors.
Their managing director Mark Hird, said: “We believe passionately in running our restaurants the right way, so to receive recognition that we are the most sustainable in Durham is a great reward for all of the team who have worked so hard to get us to this point.
“I believe one of the things that makes us different is that we are very much a part of the community – we really live and breathe it.”
As well as a commitment to ethical sourcing, both restaurants impressed the SRA with their use of recycled or reclaimed furniture and fittings, a no-imports policy, paying all staff the ‘living wage’, employing apprentices, and supporting local and national charities.