The Royal Richmond Hotel is an institution in the Hawkesbury and the kitchen has been forging connections with growers to showcase the best Hawkesbury produce since the new owners took-over the historic pub a few years ago.
General manager Todd Garratt - a chef by trade - explained the hotel's connection to the local community and producers is at the centre of the business's ethos.
"The core of what we're all about at the Royal is to offer a really strong and focussed food program that relies on meeting and bringing together as many producers as we can, and making use of a bounty that's on offer in this area," Mr Garratt told the Gazette.
"That focus was particularly strengthened over the floods - the whole area has gone through such a devastating time - and we've tried to give back in some respect by taking what we can - as much as we can if they're in times of need - and using that produce in our retail offering."
This includes jams, preserves and other packaged foods, which the Royal now sells on a retail basis.
"We're working all the time with the CWA, producers, the distillers, the locals who are putting on events that speak of the local demographic," Mr Garratt said.
"We've done Maltese Independence Day dinners - which is a huge part of this community and also the heritage of this area."
Established in 1848 and one of the country's oldest pubs, the Royal undertook 12 months of extensive renovations led by new owners Peter Wynne and Karen Anderson.
After taking the reins in September 2019, the duo breathed new life into the historic pub on Windsor Street.
Mr Garratt said the team aimed to bring "a sense of city hospitality to the country".
"We have very high standards in the way we present things, the way we focus on service, the food program. And have a very family forward thinking towards our guests and our staff as well," he said.
Mr Garratt wants the locale to be the "go to" for young workers interested in entering the hospitality industry in the Hawkesbury.
"They come here and they get experience where they're crafting goods whether it be retail products and jams, sausages ... Some of the things we're doing here you won't even find in some of the big restaurants in the city," he said.
The kitchen sources as much as they can locally, including from the Hawkesbury valley and up to the Blue Mountains. Local landholders bring fig leaves and flowers for the pub's displays, and the kitchen uses botanicals from local distillers that they turn into hot sauces, mustards and tomato sauces.
"It's also about reusing produce and trying to focus on less wastage as well. During apple season we had 200 kilograms of apples in the fridge we had to work our way through, [so we made] apple butters, apple jams and apple jellies," Mr Garratt said.
They recently put a beehive on the roof and will use this to produce honey.
The next renovation on the agenda is fixing-up the outside of the pub to return it to its heritage roots, including doing-up the balcony.
Mr Garratt said: "It's about embracing what's on offer here, and really engaging and enjoying what all the businesses are trying to do because it's for the betterment of the community, the betterment of Richmond."