‘Why a fish restaurant?’, I was asked so many times when we ‘did the re-brand’ . . . ‘What was wrong with Firenze?’ I was asked. . . The answer was ‘Nothing was wrong with Firenze’.
When I look back over the menus and awards from those days, I glow with pride, and know, as humble as I try to be, that we did good! The pastas were all made fresh on the premises, as were the breads. . . that butter bread… Ohhh my life it was good.
Lino and I flourished in business and personally when we landed in Kibworth, we knew that we were in the right place, and for our girls too.
As the years rolled on and Firenze blossomed into a much loved and established venue, we extended our efforts to the other side of the A6 and opened Boboli in 2007. ‘Two Italians in one village?’ I was asked. Well, it was a challenge to ensure that the two places offered something different, and for the most part we achieved it. . . still offering the same level of excellence but also something of a more relaxed atmosphere. . . Bibbly Boboli Boo. . . was our hope for Kibworth’s very own Boboli gardens.
Times change and the economy fluctuated, so we decide to breathe some new life into Station Street. Lino’s first place of work was in Bordighera, on the Livornese coastline, and his passion for fish was born out of this time. . . So, why not fish? Why not Nibbles, small plates of tapas style goodies? Move with the times to keep it vibrant and people will fall in love with our little restaurant all over again! Add the challenge of being located in landlocked Kibworth and let’s show them what we can do . . . ably lead by Head Chef Tom, The Lighthouse was born and has flourished, being awarded the Bib Gourmand in the Michelin Guide and retaining the acclaim that we won in the days of Firenze!
The added bonus is that in changing the offering in Station Street, we were really able to let loose on the menu in Main Street, and Boboli also flew and has since received recognition and success for its fabulous Italian menus.
So, Firenze went fishing, The Lighthouse shone and Boboli boomed.
As we hit our 20th anniversary, we wonder what the next chapter holds for us.
Ciao for now!
20TH ANNIVERSARY QUIZ
Q12 Who’s the Head Chef at The Lighthouse
Q13 In which coastal town in Italy did Lino have his first job?
Just answer in the comments below and we’ll enter you into our prize draw celebrating our 20th anniversary! (Please be sure to put your email address on your comment so that we can contact you if you’re one of our lucky winners)
Look out for other 20th anniversary quiz questions on our future blog posts. Prize draw winners to be announced on 1st January 2020.