‘A handsome, big-boned townhouse just off the main shopping drag which combines the warmth and hospitality of the traditional tavern with the serious cooking chops of the Tavern 2.0’
Tracey MacLeod, The Independent
‘They get the basics bang on. Beautiful, effortless decor, great food…most important of all, impeccable, friendly service’
Neil D’Arcy-Jones, The Gazette
Our front of house operations are overseen by Connor Mantle and Matthew McKechnie with Andrew Baker taking care of the bar. Ewan Naylon heads up our kitchen with Edward Campbell, Benjamin Donovan and Alyshia Rayner cooking with him. These individuals are ably supported by a group of people who have been hired because they want to give great hospitality. Church Street Tavern is owned by me, Piers Baker, owner of The Sun Inn in Dedham since 2003. I am ably supported by Hannah Craven and Zoe Morgan who oversee operations and people development for both our businesses.
Church Street Tavern opened on February 25th, 2014 as a tavern with ground floor bar and lounge and first floor restaurant serving simple, freshly prepared, wholesome food. Coaching inns and taverns are a rich part of our heritage with taverns springing up at a time when there were no telephones, twitter, facebook or other ways we communicate today. If you wanted to do business, politics or socialise with people, you went to a tavern. It seemed right to give this handsome building, built as a Savings Bank in about 1852, this name as I hope it too becomes the place to meet, have fun and be well looked after.
Everyone bangs on about local this and that these days, it almost goes without saying! We’re no different because the fresher something is, generally the better it tastes; so we will get it on your plate sooner if grown locally. But first and foremost, the product has to taste great. If it does and is local, we buy it; if not we seek further afield. But most of our ingredients do come from local (30 miles) farmers, growers and fish from inshore day boats on the Essex, Suffolk and South coast. Our beer, wine and other beverages are no different; we want to provide great tasting drinks from people who are as fanatical about what they do as we are and who have a respect for the raw ingredient and the environment in equal measure.
Trouvé & Artwork
The wonderful artwork in the dining room, a mix of paintings, drawings, photography and murals are by the following artists: Philippa Dow (www.philippadow.co.uk), a long standing friend of ours in Dedham, studied at Central St Martin’s School of Art London, is multi-talented and is available for commissions. We discovered Sylvia Paul (www.sylviapaul.com) through the Dedham artist Terry Jeffrey. She studied at the Colchester School of Art and her work depicts East Anglia and Japan where she has family connections. Lucy Tiffney (www.lucytiffney.com) was a finalist on The Great Interior Design Challenge and painted our spectacular mural in the restaurant. And finally, Victoria Shepherd (www.cluckcluck.biz) is a family friend and the one everyone asks about….. come and you’ll see why! All our other bits and bobs, plates and glasses are troved, mainly by Hannah, from junk shops and antique fairs throughout the land!
Colchester has lots of wonderful attractions and things to do such as Colchester Castle, Firstsite Contemporary Arts Centre, The Mercury Theatre, Colchester Arts Club and The Jumbo. As well as excellent shopping in stores such as Fenwick’s, The Red Lion Book Shop and Mann’s Music there are various independent’s such as Simply Living, Turners, Elizabeth Cannon Antique, Guntons Deli and numerous vintage shops.
In the heart of Dedham, The Sun Inn has been a watering hole for villagers and resting post for travellers for centuries. These days, it’s much the same. An ideal spot to revive yourself be it with a pint of craft beer, a meal using fine East Anglian produce or a good night’s sleep.
The Sun Inn, High Street, Dedham, Essex CO7 6DF 01206 323351