Cook bacon to desired doneness. Remove from pan and place on paper towels to drain fat. Set aside.
In a large dutch oven, Heat olive oil on a medium-high heat. Add onion, celery and garlic. Cook until softened.
Add butter and flour, cook until butter is melted and flour is cooked.
Stir in chicken broth and heavy cream, making sure that flour mixture has no clumps. Add potatoes, thyme and hot pepper, bring to a simmer and let cook covered for 20 minutes or until potatoes have cooked through.
Remove thyme. Mash ½ of the potatoes in the soup either by using a potato masher or immersion blender. If soup is not thickened to your likeness by now, add in a cornstarch slurry and cook uncovered until thickened.
Season generously with salt and pepper. Serve with soup topped with crumbled bacon and fresh chive. Enjoy!