Ian Fleming's favourite pub vows to win back its Michelin star
Bond News - 04-11-12

James Bond's 'obituary' in You Only Live Twice reveals that he was raised by a maiden aunt in Pett Bottom, Kent, near The Duck Inn pub. The Duck Inn was actually a favourite of Fleming's in his later years, and he would enjoy English staples such as steak and kidney pie for lunch. His regular seat in the garden now has a plaque.

The pub was awarded a Michelin star for seven consecutive years from 1974 until 1981. But this triumph was never ­officially recognised. Rebecca Burr, UK editor of the Michelin Guide, said: "The Duck Inn was obviously well ahead of its time, as pub food in the Seventies was often not very good. However, the pub (serving good food) ­symbol was not introduced to the Michelin Guide until 1998."

As a result the official title for being the first Michelin-starred pub went to the Stagg Inn at ­Titley in Herefordshire in 2001.

As the Express reports, the current landlord John Pryne "has vowed to win back the star and has steadily been improving the food since he took over five years ago".

He said the star could have been won by the Jacobean pub’s colourful landlord when Fleming was a regular. John Farquhar Laing was famed for owning ­several large cars and importing produce from France, which his Swedish wife Ola cooked in the pub’s kitchen.

Mr Prynne said: “When the Michelin star was here it was the pub’s heyday. People would come down from London for an evening meal and overnight stay. Then it was sold and obviously lost its star as I presume the chef moved on. It was sold again and there was a point where they weren’t even doing food.”

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Earlier Story: Collectors alert - rare back issues of MI6 Declassified magazine on Ebay

Later Story: Daniel Craig wants Sam Mendes back for Bond 24

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