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Great British Menu 2010


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Think I'm going to have to pay Will Holland a visit soon, his main course looked lovely, but I am an asparagus nutter.

You should definitely do that if you have the opportunity, we had an excellent meal at La Becasse on the evening the "Central" final was broadcast. We went for the "surprise" menu, with wines chosen by the Sommelier. Duncan's write-up is here if you want to take a look.

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Just managed to catch up on the few i missed.... Glad Nathan got through. His dessert looked horrid though. It amazes how crap a lot of the desserts are this year.

That's a common factor every year: the desserts are always weak. I think many of the chefs depend heavily on someone else at their establishment for desserts so they find themselves a bit out on a limb when they have to work on their own.

Think I'm going to have to pay Will Holland a visit soon, his main course looked lovely, but I am an asparagus nutter.

We went to La Becasse the Friday evening that Will Holland got through (see signature for link to blog). There were some really nice and imaginative dishes so yes, do go if you get a chance (no asparagus though we did get asparagus the next evening at Mr Underhill's).

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Think I'm going to have to pay Will Holland a visit soon, his main course looked lovely, but I am an asparagus nutter.

Surprised you have not been yet, its a lot closer to you than it is me.

We dined there last year, met Will, had a tour of the kitchen, met some of his guys, shame its not closer.

Top notch food.

Good job I had Sat Nav because the signs are easy to miss.

As its out in the sticks watch out for the tractors, ooh arr, ooh arr, :biggrin:

"So many places, so little time"

http://londoncalling...blogspot.co.uk/

@d_goodfellow1

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Yes, it is rediculous we haven't been there yet. The reason is rather amusing. We were fortunate to see Will Holland demonstrate at the Ludlow Food Festival several years ago. He demonstrated how to make a ballotine of salmon and a saddle of lamb. My mother being game for a laugh got invited up on stage to "help out" and as a reward we got given the spoils of the demonstration as a present. Will told us to take the ballotine of salmon and poach it sous vide at 50 or so degrees at home. Having no professional equipment we tried to do this in a pan of water. No doubt we messed it up because the results were absolutely disgusting :) But as a result my other half has groaned at any suggestion of going to Le Becasse, citing the salmon incident!

Quite unfair on Mr Holland who was only doing us a favour ;)

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  • 1 month later...

Well, now this is over, I don't think Alan Murchison has done his reputation any favours! A bit more humility might be useful next time.

Tom Kerridge and Kenny Atkinson on the other hand must be turning them away in droves!

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We went for mid week £10 lunch last year this was my report:

At last a pub worth returning to. Not since our visit to The Sportsman the other year have I had a pub experience worth repeating. I must admit due very much to ‘e gullet’ - the online food and wine blog site - where they have been raving about the great £10 lunches at The Hand & Flowers in Marlow for a while.

The H&F is a Greene King, opened in 2005 by Tom and Beth Kerridge it gained a Michelin star in its first year. Divided into three eating areas which were obviously the original, public, private and snug bars it oozes old world charm with beamed ceilings and heavy oak scrubbed tables. We booked fortunately, by 1.15pm they were turning walkins away, one party of eight was most upset. It was a warm spring day so some were offered the use of the garden which they readily accepted. The only problem was that this put the kitchen under pressure to say nothing of the waiting staff who were running in and out and the service got slower and slower.

We sipped a glass of Prosecco while we scanned the wine list and enjoyed an appetizer of deliciously crisp white bait with a Tabasco dip. Food was quickly ordered as there were only two courses to choose from on the £10 menu, the wine took a little longer but as usual after going through the whole list we settled for a carafe of house red - a vin de pays. If any foodie pub can’t offer a good house wine it is not worth patronising - we weren’t disappointed. Bread was freshly made, a soda bread and white rolls, served with a good quality slightly salted butter which was spreadable - halleluiah - not straight out of the fridge.

My first course of west country pork pie with piccalilli was very good. The pastry was not too thick and heavy and the filling was tender and tasty with plenty of jelly and the piccalilli was not vinegary.

My partners leek and chive velouté was lacking in salt but blossomed when some was added. Our Hand & Flowers Lasagne was different. Served in deep bowls the freshly made pasta encased a tasty mix of shredded beef, rather than mince, mixed with tomatoes, mushrooms and herbs. I must admit, when I thought of the shredded beef, a naughty thought went through my head ‘mechanically recovered meat’! But no, the beef was good. The dish was finished with a béchamel sauce sprinkled with nutmeg. A gratined cheese topping would have given more life to the dish.

Puds were, a very dry chocolate tart with super thin pastry served with malted milk ice cream and a rum baba with coconut sorbet. I enjoyed them both but my partner was not impressed, not being a pud man it takes a lot to impress him. Mind you I ate half his rum baba but couldn’t taste the rum.

Three courses were £13.50 - a good quality, reasonably priced pub lunch. I would love to try the à la carte but starters average £8 and mains £17 and by the time you add puds, coffee, drinks and service it becomes a special occasion venue.

I did contact them with a view to organising a branch lunch with their £13.50 menu, yes they said they would be very willing to do it but there would be a £500 room charge for 30 people using the restaurant - no Credit Crunch here!

Pam Brunning Editor Food & Wine, the Journal of the European & African Region of the International Wine & Food Society

My link

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I don't think Alan Murchison has done his reputation any favours! A bit more humility might be useful next time.

Tom Kerridge and Kenny Atkinson on the other hand must be turning them away in droves!

Spot on.

I reckon Alan caught a bad dose of what I think we should designate as Aiden Byrne Syndrome.

On the other hand, Tom and Kenny came across as great blokes - the sort you'd want to sit down with and chat about food,football and putting the world to rights.

I reckon the final menu turned out to be be a winner (although I had thought Kenny's starter had looked an absolute stunner).

John Hartley

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I'm on the whole quite pleased this is now over as the standard of food has I think. Has been quite poor.! Tom Kerridge has done himself no harm at all and we look forward to a meal there in july. Alan Murchison and Will Holland seem like complete idiots. Which is a great shame as we had thought becasse could be worth a trip. It has now been cancelled.!!! Kenny seems to be better on tv than he is in his restaurant as a meal there this weekend was really not very good. Im pleased Lisa is starting to step out of Nigels shadow and has done herself no harm at all. If it does come back next year , i hope they pick better chefs..

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I'm on the whole quite pleased this is now over as the standard of food has I think. Has been quite poor.! Tom Kerridge has done himself no harm at all and we look forward to a meal there in july. Alan Murchison and Will Holland seem like complete idiots. Which is a great shame as we had thought becasse could be worth a trip. It has now been cancelled.!!!

Really? I know that Alan didn't come across well, but I just thought that Will was out of his depth in the competition, as well as being very constrained by the rules which limited what he could use, particularly for the fish course. We had an excellent meal at La Becasse in April and I would certainly recommend going there if you have the chance.

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I'm on the whole quite pleased this is now over as the standard of food has I think. Has been quite poor.! Tom Kerridge has done himself no harm at all and we look forward to a meal there in july. Alan Murchison and Will Holland seem like complete idiots. Which is a great shame as we had thought becasse could be worth a trip. It has now been cancelled.!!!

Really? I know that Alan didn't come across well, but I just thought that Will was out of his depth in the competition, as well as being very constrained by the rules which limited what he could use, particularly for the fish course. We had an excellent meal at La Becasse in April and I would certainly recommend going there if you have the chance.

Wholeheartedly agree, I would return in an instant to eat Will Hollands food. Sadly he did not shine on the show but he really is a talent.

Shame its so far out of the way for us.

"So many places, so little time"

http://londoncalling...blogspot.co.uk/

@d_goodfellow1

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To me Anthony Demetre was by far the funniest chef I have ever seen

on Tv. He had me in stitches throughout, always loved his food but never

realised he had such a sharp sense of humour. Poor Tom Kerridge

did not know what to make of him.

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We had the five course menu at Northcote on Saturday and didn't even know Lisa had won, the meal was excellent throughout, Northcote has become our favourite place locally. We were offered a tour of the kitchens and a chat with Lisa afterwards, but too much tawny Port had been consumed to make that worthwhile!

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