A MILLSTREET native won the 'best emerging business' gong at an awards ceremony celebrating businesses across the midlands region.
The MidlandsIreland.ie Best in Business Awards 2013 last Friday celebrate businesses success across the midland counties of Laois, Offaly, Longford and Westmeath but it was Corkman Danny Desmond who came out with one of the top awards.
Danny plays a major key role in the highly successful Preston House Restaurant in Abbeyleix, which has only been trading for the past 11 months.
Danny, who now has 17 years of experience in catering, began training as a teenager but quickly worked his way up to Michelin level. His career has included working with international stars of food such as Richard Corrigan and Dylan McGrath and he also worked as a head waiter at the Ivy in London.
Preston House is a period property dating back to the early 19th century. Danny and his partner, Breda Stackpool, took over Preston House last year and have received rave reviews from restaurant critics Tom Doorley and Paulo Tullio, and are ranked #2 out of over 2,500 restaurants in Leinster on Tripadvisor.
Their success has been driven by pure hard work, says Danny. "What is always at the front of my mind is the warmth and welcome that the customer must feel when they enter an establishment. I have always believed they cannot be false or forced," he said.
"The food is obviously an essential part of the dining experience but it must be accompanied by high service levels.
"When you are proud of what you do and what you represent, that warmth is completely authentic and people can tell."