A MICHELIN star trained chef who worked at Heston Blumenthal's The Fat Duck is opening his own restaurant in Conwy.

Nick Rudge, who was a junior sous chef at Heston Blumenthal’s The Fat Duck in Berkshire, will open his business above the old Palace Cinema.

Nick's premise is called The Jackdaw, giving a big nod to the community and history of the town [it will be named after the society with the same name, which members had to be born within the town walls to be part of].

Nick, who moved back to his home town of Llandudno earlier this year and back in with his parents after Covid halted his work, has been running a takeaway service - The Jackdaw At Home.

Nick said: "The takeaway was amazing and mind blowing. The day we started taking bookings, there were fantastic write ups in the local papers about what was on offer and about myself being on furlough.

"Luckily I was with my brother, Dan and his girlfriend, Lois that day, because the response was absolutely phenomenal. We were all on our laptops taking bookings for most of the day.

 PA File Photo of Heston Blumenthal. See PA Feature TOPICAL Food Heston. Picture credit should read: Ian West/PA Photos. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature TOPICAL Food Heston.

PA File Photo of Heston Blumenthal.

"My vision for the restaurant is to create a place where locals and visitors to the area can come, enjoy some good food, some nice drink, relax and have a great time with relaxed service.

"I think it would be amazing if foodies from the other side of the world were to travel to come and taste what we have on offer here in Wales.

"With the likes of Conwy Mussels literally around the corner from the restaurant, amazing local meat farmed with passion and love up in the Conwy and Denbighshire Valleys, Great Orme lobsters, even local varieties of fruit that have almost been lost, I think the menu literally writes itself.

"My brother Dan and my dad John have just finished building the bar and shelving units behind, which is looking fantastic," Nick added.

"There have been many hurdles to get over but I feel we are very close now."

The former Ysgol San Sior and Ysgol Bryn Elian pupil, who went on to study at Llandrillo College, did return to The Fat Duck in Berkshire after being on furlough.

"After the takeaway I headed back to Bray to carry on working at The Fat Duck," Nick said.

"By that point I had the plan to open the restaurant, so I made a plan, spoke to my head chef and respectfully worked my notice period and came back home to pursue The Jackdaw."

"It all happened quite quickly.

"With the success of At Home, then with being successful in securing the restaurant site, then with going back to work, then with going back home to concentrate on The Jackdaw and now in the final stages and about to open.

"Conwy has always been a very special and unique place to me, not only because it’s so beautiful, but because of the amazing history of the town too.

"Conwy was always the place of my dreams to have a restaurant ever since I started cooking."

The Jackdaw is opening on Thursday, October 7. The restaurant will be taking online bookings from Friday, September 10, with a sample menu at www.thejackdawconwy.co.uk

Nick is looking for enthusiastic individuals for his front of house team. To find out more email careers@thejackdawconwy.co.uk