There were celebrations all round for the team at the Crathorne Arms as the much loved eatery was proclaimed the Tees region’s best restaurant 2020 in the annual Tees Business poll.
Winners back in 2016, husband-and-wife restaurateurs Eugene and Barbara McCoy say they are “Absolutely delighted” to have taken the crown for a second time.
“There are so many great restaurants in the Tees Valley that to win was a huge achievement and we really are blown away,” said Eugene.
“I know there is an abundance of great food, great chefs and great restaurant owners in the area and we were up against some very stiff opposition. Simply to make the Best Restaurant top 20 is something that every restaurant on it should be immensely proud of.”
The Crathorne Arms, situated in the village of Crathorne, near Yarm, narrowly pipped 2019 champions Chadwicks Inn Maltby, 2018 winners Muse of Yarm and 2017 poll-toppers The Bay Horse in Hurworth.
The outstanding reputation of The Crathorne Arms is due, in part, to impressive seasonal menu choices and outstanding food presentation, but tips the scales of success thanks to an exceptional and warm welcome from the close-knit and loyal team.
“We really want our visitors to relax and have a fantastic time here, and the staff are amazing when it comes to making clients happy,” said Eugene. “They’re more like family than employees.
“Our chef David Henry has been with us for six-and-a-half years; Aaron, our general manager, for three-and-a-half; and then, of course, there’s my wife Barbara who really is the rock for all of us.”
Like so many other restaurants up and down the country, The Crathorne Arms has been and will continue to be affected by the changing laws surrounding Covid.
“It’s been a tough time,” admitted Eugene. “That’s why this award is so welcome. It’s a real boost for the team who have worked so hard to ensure our clients still get the great service they expect from us.”
Eugene is also full of praise for his customers.
“Without them, we’re nothing, so it’s great to take this opportunity to thank them enormously for their votes and their custom,” he said.
“Lord Crathorne and his family and the residents in the village have been behind us, not to mention the wider Teesside community.”
As for the future of the Crathorne Arms, a little thing like a pandemic is not stopping plans for some very exciting changes.
With new houses being built in Crathorne and a new generation coming through who can look forward to lazy days and cosy nights at this wonderful venue, Eugene is determined restaurant will stay on top of its game.
“Our courtyard out back is being redone as we speak,” he revealed. “Eventually, we will have a marquee and will be able to offer live music and a venue for weddings and parties.
“We’re a creative lot here and also have some great ideas for workshops. We feel we have to do it for our customers, we have to keep giving them more.”