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The Lakes - where to go?


nikkib
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I hope Bruno hasn't left! Not sure who was in the kitchen last week but it was fantastic.

Bruno has been Trotskyised from the official HH website. No mention at all whereas previously it read like a partnership between him and Andrew. I even have suspicions the photographs have been doctored.

It no longer exists, but it was lovely.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I think the Samling does a gourmand menu, if you want to be totally ripped off. Places often list 6 or seven courses on their website, but that will not include amuses etc maybe? There'e not many round here that do multi-course menus (ie more than 6 say). Not been much help sorry :unsure:

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Heh, it'd be funny if it was because there's a quote on their website claiming 'due to popularity [of the multi-course menu], we've scrapped our a la carte menu'. I don't complain though and hope to have three coure lunch there in the run up to Christmas.

Edited by SaladFingers (log)
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  • 2 weeks later...

Anyone stuck for somewhere to go just before Christmas in the area, would be pushed for finding a better place than Clarence House. I've been visiting this place for pre-Christmas dinner for a few years now and it has always been a lovely venue, with reasonably decent food. Though since picking up 2 AA Rosettes late last year, they seem to have stepped it up a couple of notches and are exhibiting a more adventurous menu than ever before. The food looks delicate on the plate, is utterly delicious and for £35 a head, I'm impressed. Service is smart and the relatively new extension makes for as nicer place to dine as anywhere else in the Lakes. £20 for lunch makes it more than a match for Rogan and Company for anyone heading this way. I only mention this because I don't think it is already in the thread and I think is probably worth an inclusion for anyone having a scan through.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Had a good lunch at Gilpin Lodge on boxing day. Its turned into a bit of a tradition now. The place was quite busy which was good to see. I had lobster ravioli, sea bass with haricot beans and a greek yogurt and honeycomb desert. The desert was really good, I have a thing for honeycomb, not often you see it on menus.

Zoe, the daughter in law of the owners made us very welcome, she was really chatty and we had good crack with her.

They have a new chef starting in January, Chris Meredith is now at Punchbowl at Crosthwaite, the new chef, Russell, is from L'Ortolan/Waterside Inn background and it will be his first head chef job. So it will be good to see how the place goes forward!

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Living out in the sticks makes my restaurant experiences rather limited, so I tend to frequent the same relatively few restaurants (which are mainly very good) so I always take an interest in what's happening. Which is why news like this makes me a little excited and concerned at the same time!

I'm wondering why Chris would move away from Gilpin Lodge (when I thought they were chasing a star) and move to the Punchbowl? What are the Punchbowl's ambitions now? Aww, Gilpin Lodge was my favourite place to eat ever.

I enjoy a visit to th Punchbowl during the winter, so I'll look forward to that.

Edited by SaladFingers (log)
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I was at the punchbowl about a month ago, Chris was already cheffing there. I went at lunchtime, was not blown away by the menu, the lunch was ok, a cheese souffle and a open chicken sandwich. Again, I have not been back in the evening, so unsure as what direction it goes then. I cant see them formalising it too much. I believe Chris's girlfriend works at the punchbowl too.

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I was at the punchbowl about a month ago, Chris was already cheffing there. I went at lunchtime, was not blown away by the menu, the lunch was ok, a cheese souffle and a open chicken sandwich. Again, I have not been back in the evening, so unsure as what direction it goes then. I cant see them formalising it too much. I believe Chris's girlfriend works at the punchbowl too.

the thing i liked about the punchbowl was its more rustic cooking, i hope it doesn't change too much from that formula.

you don't win friends with salad

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I was at the punchbowl about a month ago, Chris was already cheffing there. I went at lunchtime, was not blown away by the menu, the lunch was ok, a cheese souffle and a open chicken sandwich. Again, I have not been back in the evening, so unsure as what direction it goes then. I cant see them formalising it too much. I believe Chris's girlfriend works at the punchbowl too.

better not tell his wife then oliver :wink: chris is settled in now and has moved positions around and you will see the menus evolve from january onwards chris is driving to create more rustic cuisine using his classic bent to promote the pub and hopefully gain a bib gourmand next year, but they wont be trying to formalise it at all, he did start to look at modern techniques at gilpin but his heart and what i believe his strength is classical french/brittish cookery will be his signature at the punchbowl and he does seem happy chap again, hes making the bread there too by the way.,

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  • 4 months later...

Finally got round to trying the First Floor Café. The place is always heaving, which was true of today with the emergance of Spring showing what appears to be the first major influx of tourism to Windermere this year.

First thing I noticed was the sheer number of waiters running about the place. Reminded me slightly of Phoenix Palace, you can barely move for them. That said, they were aimeable and their prodominantly East European accents were lovely.

Considering the chef is supposed to be Stephen Doherty who was head at Le Gavroche when they had 3 michelin stars, I was hoping, as basic as the menu is, that it'd be amazing.

Tomtato and Basil soup was okay, I mean it was Tomato and basil soup but it wasn't anywhere as nice as what I had in a pub last week.

Main course was chicken breast, black pudding, mashed potato and creamy leeks. It looked quite pretty but I was worried by the fact that the creamy leeks covered everything on the plate. As a result, I could not detect the flavour of the black pudding at all, nor the mash. It was effectively one homogenous flavour with a veriety of textures. So I chose to keep my side plate of spring vegetables seperate, which were lovely.

If I worked a bit nearer, I'd probably get fat and make this a regular lunch venue because it is decent value. I was generally disappointed that it wasn't a bit more special, which is my fault for assuming Stephen would have raised it's food above average restaurant level.

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  • 1 month later...

Just a bit of goss fo you. The Punchbowl at Crosthwaite/Drunken Duck people have bought The Plough at Lupton, just off J36 M6 heading towards Kirkby Londale. It has been shut for the last few months, hasnt really done anything in the last few years. Its a good site as its only about 3 mins off the m6. Nice bit of competition for the highwayman.

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Thanks. Always interested in stuff just off the motorway.

We're heading to the Lakes in early October. Mrs H is retiring at the end of September and we're having an overnighter at Sharrow Bay to celebrate. Which sounds like I need to organise a couple of lunches.

Perhaps something lightish on the way up, (as I wouldnt want to spoil the appetite for dinner) but "the business" next day. Punchbowl was obviosuly in the frame but all thoughts greatly appreciated.

J

John Hartley

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Just a bit of goss fo you. The Punchbowl at Crosthwaite/Drunken Duck people have bought The Plough at Lupton, just off J36 M6 heading towards Kirkby Londale. It has been shut for the last few months, hasnt really done anything in the last few years. Its a good site as its only about 3 mins off the m6. Nice bit of competition for the highwayman.

Thats good news such a prominent pub lying empty for so long was a sad sight.

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  • 6 months later...

I was having a rummage about trying to decide on a spot for lunch (Gilpin Lodge or maybe Hiping Hall) and I found this.

http://www.thetorridon.com/restaurant/chef.asp

I don't know how up to date this info is, though it seems more than a little off the beaten track.

Anyway, has anyone eaten at HH or Gilpin recently or suggest somewhere else?

Martin

Martin

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The west coast of Scotland is indeed more than a little off the beaten track if you're looking for lunch in the Lake District!

Thanks for the link though, I'd been wondering where Bruno had got to, the meals we had at Hipping when he was there were amongst the best we've had.

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Thanks for that, always wondered where Bruno went. Bit of a trek though to get up there, place looks nice.

I had lunch on Boxing day at Gilpin Lodge, and had a good time. Ham hock then venison, then a crumble to finish. Service was very good, I really like the place. They're always a bit tight on the amuse frount though. 3 courses will mean 3 courses. Chef Russell is ex Waterside Inn/L'Ortolan. I have not been to Hipping hall for nearly 3 years so can't comment there.

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  • 1 month later...

Went to the lakes a few weeks back for a weekend away. Lunched at Gilpin. The food was ok but the set lunch menu was short on choice and inspiration. For starter we both chose the salad with arancini, Jerusalem artichokes and a truffled mushroom duxelles type preparation. It was quite good. For mains I chose roast Goosnargh chicken, this came with mashed potato, sautéed mushrooms, lardons and truffle cream. It was huge and a bit rich but quite nicely cooked. We also ordered the olive oil poached salmon, this came with odd blanched button mushrooms, chunky sliced carrots and chive butter sauce. The fish and sauce was good, the garnish less successful. We passed on dessert.

The food was ok. It was differet to how I had imagined it would be. I was thinking L'ortolan style but it was a bit more Waterside in terms of portion and presentation. The hotel seems nice and the staff were good. The snow may have caused some restrictions as it had certainly restricted customers; there were only two other tables but it was quite grim weather wise. It is a nice place though and on a good day I imagine food and atmosphere would be better.

For accommodation I booked Linthwaite house on a promo from their website. My initial impression was good. The reception area is nice with a big fire and country hotel feel. The room was decent and was a nice size and as ordered had views of the lake. We had a nice walk up to the frozen tarn then had a couple of drinks in the bar.

Dinner is £50pp and is four courses with about four choices per course. Canapes were served and were not bad but erred on the safe side of cautious. The first course is a no choice amuse sized soup, on this occasion it was honey roast parsnip. Not something I would choose and seemed a bit mean considering it was one of my four courses.

For starters we had Scallops with ginger and monkfish with crisp pancetta and some oxtail. The monkfish was ok if a little over done. The scallops alone were fine but the dish a whole was a stinker. The sweet, spicy hot ginger was totally overpowering.

Mains of venison and roast rib of beef were ordered rare but came well overcooked.

To end we split cheese and chocolate fondant. The fondant was offered with pistachio ice cream but came with a weird almond essence flavoured ice cream. The cheese was selected by the kitchen and came plated. Coffee and petit fours rounded things off.

I did mention a few of my observations to our waiter and he did offer to remedy the main courses but we had eaten most of them by the time we had his attention. The poor fellow was running about like a scalded cat and was perspiring quite heavily while we spoke to him. I think it was the longest time he stood still all night. The food all looked nice and was nicely plated but there were far too many problems. The place was packed. Maybe too busy?

Breakfast was ok if a little petite. For what it cost it was poor value for money. Also, make sure you are seated in the main dining room as the area I was in was like an overspill / business space complete with a.v. Gear. It was not a nice room. I would go back if I was passing for a simple lunch on the terrace in the summer as the location is good and the views are also fine. The service was mostly good in the bar and lounges, just a bit frantic at dinner.

Cheers

Martin

Martin

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