Press Release

Mayflower Inn and Spa, Auberge Resorts Collection and Award-Winning Chef April Bloomfield Open The Garden Room

WASHINGTON, Conn. (CT), September 8, 2020 — This month, acclaimed chef April Bloomfield joins one of New England’s most celebrated luxury retreats, the recently renovated Mayflower Inn & Spa, Auberge Resorts Collection, as chef-in-residence for the fall season as part of the hotel’s “Friends of Mayflower” series to celebrate its centennial birthday. Bloomfield begins her residency as The Mayflower unveils The Garden Room, an upscale restaurant with a menu that celebrates elegant rusticity in a setting inspired by the natural world and surrounding gardens. As chef-in-residence, Bloomfield will oversee all dining operations at the 58-acre Connecticut resort, including both on-site dining  venues; The Garden Room and the hotel’s beloved local restaurant, The Tap Room, harking back to her British roots serving hearty, reimagined pub-style fare in a tavern-like setting.  


“I have been drawn to the country ever since I was little, and I find the beautiful and elegant grounds at The Mayflower Inn & Spa so inspiring,” says Bloomfield. “I’m excited to be working alongside the team to create delicious menus inspired by our local farms and the wonderful products they offer.”


A native of Birmingham, England, Bloomfield has worked with some of the world’s most revolutionary chefs in a career spanning over 25 years, from Ruth Rogers and Rose Gray of London’s The River Café to Alice Waters of Chez Panisse, developing an appreciation for the beauty of food and boldness of flavor that has become synonymous with her cooking. She is currently the mentoring chef of The Breslin, located at the Ace Hotel New York in Manhattan’s Flatiron neighborhood and has owned & operated some of the country’s most lauded restaurants from New York to San Francisco, earning a James Beard Award for Best Chef: New York City in 2014. She is also the co-owner of Coombeshead Farm, a guesthouse and restaurant in Cornwall, England. She was profiled in The New Yorker in 2010 and received an Emmy nomination for co-hosting the second season of PBS’ The Mind of a Chef. Bloomfield is also the author of two published cookbooks, A Girl and her Pig (2012) and A Girl and her Greens (2015).


“We are thrilled to collaborate with chef Bloomfield and welcome her to The Mayflower family as we celebrate our centennial birthday. She’s created an entirely new, destination-worthy experience for our guests to escape to this fall,” said Israel Benyair, general manager of The Mayflower Inn & Spa. “Chef Bloomfield brings a new perspective and unrivaled experience to The Mayflower, honoring our locale and connection to the Connecticut countryside.” 


The highlight of Bloomfield’s residency centers around the opening of The Garden Room, set in the hotel’s elegant main dining room with a new interior design by New York-based interior designer Celerie Kemble of Kemble Interiors. Bloomfield’s menu celebrates elegant rusticity, featuring the finest ingredients from local Connecticut farms prepared with English sensibilities, while the design draws inspiration from the natural world with a large-scale floral mural and vibrant greenery throughout.


From September 8 through the holiday season, Bloomfield’s expertly prepared dishes are offered as a four-course Garden Supper tasting menu. Curated wine pairings are also available. Though dishes will change week by week, current highlights include Hamachi Crudo with Charred and Pickled Fall Vegetables, Cauliflower Tikka Masala with Curry Leaf Butter, Stuffed & Steamed Flounder with Swiss Chard and Caviar, and a selection of English pudding including a Pear and Almond Tarte with Creme Fraiche. 


Drawing from her experience opening New York City’s first gastropub, which earned a Michelin star, Bloomfield will seamlessly transform the menus at The Mayflower’s beloved local spot, The Tap Room. Chef Bloomfield’s new Tap Room dishes include quintessential bar snacks developed with a refined palate, including Deviled Eggs with chives and chili mayonnaise, Soft Country Pate with seasonal chutney and toast, and Pork Scratchings with spiced lime dust. The menu also pays homage to the Northeast’s seaside bounty with dishes like New England Clam Chowder, Hamachi Crudo with Avocado and Oysters on the half shell. Salads and sandwiches round out the menu, including Bloomfield’s take on the Tap Room Burger, with fried onions and raclette. Handcrafted cocktails with autumnal spirits are enjoyed in the Tap Room or on the Mayflower’s extensive outdoor patio, overlooking its verdant gardens and changing foliage. 


In addition to The Garden Room and The Tap Room, Bloomfield will develop new menus at the pool deck, in-room dining, take-away and picnic offerings. The historic Connecticut property looks forward to announcing future residencies in the coming months as part of the developing “Friends of Mayflower” series, including guest chef dinners with friends of chef Bloomfield, local artist collaborations and more. 


The Garden Room is open Thursday through Saturday from 6pm to 9pm. Reservations are required and can be made by calling 860.868.9466. The Tap Room is open to hotel guests and locals for lunch, dinner and brunch Sunday through Wednesday, with a limited all day menu offered daily from 3pm to 5pm. As part of the Mayflower Inn & Spa’s commitment to exceptional guest experiences, the property follows all current government regulations and CDC guidelines. Please visit the website to learn more about the property’s health and safety practices.