“The best way not to get a Michelin star is probably to focus on getting one,” says Philippe Laffut, Belgian chef-proprietor of Patin d’Or: “If there was a recipe, everyone would have one. There isn’t. You have to be yourself.” There is far more to culinary success than that, of course. It starts before diners even enter the restaurant – Philippe was attracted to the location partly for its ample parking, so guests arrive relaxed. It continues with the comfort and ambience in the dining room.

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