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If anyone is planning to go to L'Enclume in te next few months, could you give me a heads up as its been over a year since I first went and would like to go again. So if someone does not mind me gatecrashing, or just wants a good meal out, PM me, I live in Morecambe so just over an hour from L'Enclume. Cheers big ears. As per, friends are like "Its a bit pricey", and my partner thinks its pretentious (Which it is i guess, but thats good, sometimes!!) And it's not somewhere you can go on your own, but I guess it beats a chinese!! I wonder if L'Enclume delivers??  :huh:


Ola, i'm thinking of spending a few days in the lakes with my wife, im going to eat at l'enclume...have made a couple of enquires, £50 for 10 courses, £70 for 15, & £120 for 24 courses is very good value for money. Its very hard to find a simular restaurant in the uk at the same standard for such a reasonable price. Im very excited to eat there, maybe you should be a little more open minded.

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Sorry if my post mis-reads. It is not I that has a prob with the prices, I'd go tommorrow, its my usual dining partners, I can't find anyone to go with. I don't really want to go on my own, I have been before last january. Its a bit much to expect some friends to fork out £70 if all they are use to is local pub grub (nowt wrong with that either). So if anyone in the NW is in a similar psition, I was just saying hi, if they want someone to go with, then I ddont need much persuading.

Failing that I'll put a pout on and drag them there on my birthday in October!!



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  • 2 weeks later...

There was a good article about L'Enclume in this weeks Westmorland Gazette. It was more based on Simon Rogan, on how he has scrapped plans to open in Henley-on-Thames, and is opening a new place in Cartmel called Rogan & Co. The restaurant has also had a bit of a make over. No tablecloths, a bit of a trend in places at the mo! If I can find it online, I will post here. Makes me want to go even more now!!

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There was a good article about L'Enclume in this weeks Westmorland Gazette. It was more based on Simon Rogan, on how he has scrapped plans to open in Henley-on-Thames, and is opening a new place in Cartmel called Rogan & Co. The restaurant has also had a bit of a make over. No tablecloths, a bit of a trend in places at the mo! If I can find it online, I will post here. Makes me want to go even more now!!


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Interesting: the Westmorland Gazette claims that Michelin were negative about Rogan’s plan to open in Henley and required his continued presence in Cartmel. I heard this same story from one of the staff at L’Enclume in late January. Of course, this may be disinformation or frustration on their part (especially as Michelin say they don't provide advice and guidance), but for the sake of mischief, let’s suppose that this is true...

For then, if Michelin were to apply their oft-stated demand for consistency to themselves, they must have been busy of late dissuading Messrs Ducasse, Robuchon, Ramsay etc from further openings. Indeed, some trembling junior inspector may have been despatched to visit Gordo and demand that he starts closing his London venues one by one…

…oh, hang on, isn’t that already happening? Does the tide turn here??? :wink:

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I think this is a classic local rag misquote.

Simon Rogan believes that the reason he did not achieve a second star this year was the simple fact that in michelin's eyes it wasn't good enough!

I don't know what was said by the staff member but maybe the journalist got the idea from them.

With all that has gone on there recently michelin would be the last thing on his mind.

Very sad.

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  • 6 months later...

So ended up in L'enclume for lunch today. I say ended up, I had it booked for a while, have been saving my pennies. I was originally going on my own, which was fine by me, but a friend found out and she was going to tag along. So I changed it to a 2, sent her the link to the website so she could have a look. I said to her is there anything she does not like, as they only do tasting menus now, she said she did not like seafood. So I e-mailed L'enclume back to say, and they said it would not be a problem, but they may struggle to do the 'Menu 3' (The old underground 24 course jobbie) which is understandable.

Aaaaannnnnnyyway, long story short, she cancelled on me. She was away in Sheffield last night and was just setting off at 11:30 back to Lancaster, the table was booked at 12:30. I phoned her, we both agreed there was no way she was going to make it back, so I went alone. Women.

Arrived on time. I was first there. I settled into the lounge.


Now, this is where I found my new phone makes a loud 'CHA CHING' noise everytime I take a pic, even on silent, with everything turned low. Bloody thing. So I do not have any pics to show you till the end. Sorry. One thing I dont like is all this hushed reverie in these places. Whats up with a bit of music? Is it a bit of a contentious issue?

Right, had 1 glass of laurent perrier, canapes were olives (zzzzzzzz) spicy popcorn, which was good, very moreish, and salt/pepper prawn cracker things.

Went for menu 2 (£70)

Had 12 Courses, just wrote a short description of 6 below, but deleted as it was turning into a mission. Best dish was the Eel and pork belly, served as little croqettes with sweetcorn puree. Mmmmm. Bit disapointed with final dessert, a parfait/sorbet thing that tasted of those lavender sweets. Blaagghh. Others included a deconstructed hot pot (kind of pointelss), monkfish in squid ink and a good veal dish with tonka bean gel.

Had a pot of tea and petit fours


I quite like what they have done to the place, made it more modern. Service was fine, although there were just 6 others in. They had shampoo rather than handwas in the loo?? Could have been handwash in a shampoo bottle? Weird.

Overall, it was good, bill came to £102 including service. Thats with 1 glass champagne (£15) 2x cokes (£5) and tea/petit's (£7!). Not something I'm going to do often, but can't help but feel I prefer Rogans. Better get on with doing some overtime this week!

NB: I'm totally shit at remebering exactly how or what went into a dish, so not doing the place justice. Go and see for yourself, if someone else is paying :cool:

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They have just the 3 tasting menus, 1,2 &.........3! £50, £70 & £90 (which is cheaper than the old underground at £110). They used to do a limited set lunch at £25ish I think. I don't think its a lunch sort of place, not saying I didnt like it, i think most people would want to go in the evening.

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  • 4 months later...

A quick note about some excellent service at L'enclume at the weekend. Mrs. Kropotkin is pregnant and the staff were particularly helpful and accommodating: re-orienting various dishes on the Tour and, it appeared, providing a couple of especially constructed dishes also. And this amidst a virtually full service too. Well done to them: attention and service deserving of praise on here.

On another note, this was our first visit since their redecoration. I thought I’d miss the linen, but the cool, minimalist makeover works nicely – especially in contrast to the dark, damp, earthy weather outside as the big freeze crept across Cumbria.

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Sorry - it used to be called 'The Tour', but now it has become 'Menu 2': a dozen or so courses for £70, which, with extra coffee and petit fours, took us from 7.00pm to 11.45pm... so plenty to keep you going. I think the £90 menu offers another four or five dishes - so we demurred on that one. Let us know what you think of the place - it seems to divide opinion!

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  • 2 weeks later...
this was our first visit since their redecoration. 

They may be redecorating again!

Phone rings yesterday morning to tell us that they've had a flood and the kitchen will be closed. They can accommodate us for dinner at Rogan & Co if we'd like and the overnight hotel bit is still OK. "No thanks", Mrs H replies, "We want to eat at L'Enclume."

Long story cut short is that they are full of apologies and generous in wanting to "make things right " for us, so we're now going next Friday. :cool:

John Hartley

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Went last night. And, as mentioned on the previous post, they had been very generous in "making things right" for dinner and the overnight stay. When a place acts in this way, it gives you a very warm (and well-placed) feeling towards them.

Our first eating-out of the year and what a way to start 2009. From start to finish this was superb, innovative cooking – even if not every dish was a WOW! And service throughout was friendly, knowledgable and efficient. I don't drink these days, but Mrs H tells me they had a good wine list - although she was disappointed that the half bottles were all French. And, as always, she notes that it is a pain to try to match wine to long tasting menus.

Three menus are offered and we went for the middle one at £70 and offering 13 courses. The £50 one just didn’t seem to offer enough of the experience to justify the 90 minute drive and overnight stay. On the other hand, the £90 one just seemed a bit too much overload. But menus like this are a nuisance for reviewing – you can never remember what you’ve eaten so notes are essential. But there’s the dilemma. Do you leave your notepad blatantly on the table and scribble away, or do you work more discreetly? We opted for discretion so, of course, not everything is recorded but, as best we can recall, this is what we ate (with menu description):

- Tamarillo “martini” fizz – a martini glass with tamarillo juice, topped with a foam with a olive shaped piece of tamarillo jelly skewered on a pick. A salty coconut biscuit accompanied. Fun start.

- Cod “yolk” crispies – puffed rice and a saffron jelly (the yolk) and a cod cream. Textures and colour was better here than flavour. Nice but not a WOW.

- Egg drop hot & sour soup – an excellent clear broth, well flavoured with ginger and coriander, with semolina in the bottom of the bowl, cubes of tofu and shrimp. A syringe of pasteurised egg yolk is squirted into the soup to provide the egg ribbons. Great dish – we want a recipe for the broth/ginger/coriander part, it’d be just what you want if you were feeling under the weather!

- Surf & turf – a few “lumps” of smoked eel and shredded belly pork. Each “lump” sat on beetroot sauce and topped with violet mustard jelly. A wonderful dish – to do a Greg Wallace, it was deep, it was savoury, it was …..even if it was a tad difficult to eat with the tea spoon.

- Razor role reversal – jasmine tea smoked egg – presented in a razor clam shell. The razor clam in broth presented in the egg shell. A fun idea but we weren’t too keen on the tastes here (nothing wrong with it – just didn’t particularly fancy it)

- At this point, the menu served shredded foie gras but it’s something neither of us eat so we got a great replacement. A thin slice of lamb with white chocolate risotto and a citrus sauce. The lamb hot; the risotto and sauce cold. Good contrast. Possibly my partner’s favourite dish of the evening.

- Squid ravioli and vodka – squid risotto in between two discs of squid jelly, forming a raviolo. A couple of rings of plain squid; a few shards of squid crisp, squid mousse. Vodka and apple foam. Masterful!

- Chick o’hake in verjus – hake cheek topped with crispy chicken skin, with some fennel and pine nuts. Great piece of fish, the chicken skin seemed odd but worked really well as did the sour verjus sauce. My favourite dish.

- Hotpot – deconstructed ingredients brought a clear lamb broth with “balls” of potato, red cabbage and onion. I’m sure there must be a proper cheffy word for these “balls” – what I mean are the now fashionable serving of liquids which have been treated so they form a skin allowing them to be picked up and which then burst in the mouth. We first had these in Catalonia a few years back and wonder if they are an El Bulli invention? Anyway, the broth was well flavoured, the “balls” less so. An oyster beignet sat on the side. .

- LA11 venison, orange and clove – LA11? What’s that, we thought. The waiter reminded us this was the restaurant’s postcode and that the venison had come from nearby. Superb piece of venison. We found the taste of cloves in the orange sauce to be overpowering and somewhat spoiled what was otherwise a fine plate of food. Alongside was piece of pumpkin topped with tamarind which was fine. A dish that could have been much nicer.

- Expearamenthol frappe – back to the clever menu descriptions! Poached pear, topped with eucalyptus mousse and coffee crumbs. Served in a coffee cup and looking like cappuccino. Great fun and great taste.

- Sticky tacky pudding – deconstructed ingredients of Cartmel’s claim to food fame. “Balls” again – sponge, vanilla, date, caramel. We’re advised to eat them in the right order but quickly. Another fun idea but one that doesn’t work if you’re a tad slow in getting all the balls into your mouth at once, so to speak.

- Violets and yuzu. A yuzu mousse (which was nicely citrus), with a violet crisp, A few blobs of yuzu jelly and a sprinkling of violet “fizz”. Didn’t feel this one really came together too well. Perhaps a case of more being less?

We had coffee and petits fours which, nice as they were, just didn’t seem that right to go with coffee – lemon grass icecream; tiramisu mousse; olive oil jelly (although this was fab in itself) and a couple of others which were more “right”.

John Hartley

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Sounds like a similar menu to what I had last August. I know what you mean about the teaspoons, the first 5 courses I think came with them. The food is def 2*, I would like to go back and try the £90 20 odd course jobbie. Was the maitre'd there, tall guy, slim? He really patronised me last time I was there, put me off going back in a hurry.

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Funny you mention being patronised - I looked up them up on TripAdvisor for the "hotel" part and there were a number of posts about snooty service.

No sign of any male maitre'd last night. The chef's wife/partner was running front of house for a while but I don't think she stayed around after everyone was seated. The three waiters were spot on - it was a formal service, which I think you'd expect in a place like that, but it wasn't at all off-putting. The guys were very happy to engage with you.


John Hartley

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  • 1 month later...

Just got back from Cartmel,after an overnight stay in the village.

Not at L'Enclume they were full.

I did however dine there last night,and we had lunch at Rogan & Co, today.

Have stuff to do, but will post reviews asap.


"So many places, so little time"



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  • 3 weeks later...

I have a special fondness for "The Lakes".

Our first excursion into fine dining was at the famous Sharrow Bay "the first ever country house hotel"

Also incidentally, the inventor of "Sticky toffee pudding"

We had part of our honeymoon there, and very strange though it may seem, our recent return to the area was, ( unbeknown to me) our wedding anniversary!

Well L'Enclume? What can I say about it that hasn't already been said?

First a little bit of background.

An overnight stay was required because of the distance from home, and as Mrs G was getting fed up with me always being on my laptop

We came to an agreement!!!

Leave the laptop at home.

Enjoy the food without analysing every mouthful.

Don't take photos

Don't make notes.

I had to agree as I quickly realised that it would make the meal a more relaxing prospect,given the amount of courses and flavours involved.

We chose Menu 2, £70

13 courses plus an amuse, fourteen in effect.

I admit to phoning L'Enclume today as I could'nt remember the amuse and we came to the conclusion that it was

Cod tongues,Nori batter,Sesame emulsion

followed by,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

Tamarillo "martini" fizz

Cod "yolk" crispies

Egg drop hot and sour soup

Surf and Turf

Razor Role reversal 08

Shredded foie

Suid ravioli,vodka and frogs legs

Chick o Hake in verjus

Hot Pot

La11 Venison, orange and clove

Expearamenthol frappe

Sticky tacky pudding

Violets and Yuzu

Well as I said,its all been said before, and probably better than I could describe it myself.

As the days have past since our visit the memory is less fresh in my mind as to the wonderful dishes we enjoyed, in fact I had to reference Harters recent review above to jog my memory.

I am very relieved to report that his review is pretty spot on as to our experience also.

The first four proper, plus the amuse really were wonderful.

I couldnt have been more pleased.

The Razor clam dish I felt was a little bit chewy and not quite as good.

The Chick o hake is really a top notch dish!

Unlike Harters I really enjoyed LA11, perhaps Simon Rogan has adapted/refined this dish. Chefs do follow this site!

Again Violets and Yuzu was very much to my taste, not quite hitting the high notes for Mrs G.

Service was very friendly, and ably performed by our French waiter

Maitre D, Franck DeLetange has returned to the fold after a four year absence to impart an extra injection of much welcomed personality to the place.

Good show!

On summing up I used to liken these multi taste extavaganza's to my first girlfriend.


I've changed my opinion after this meal.

IT DELIVERED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

BIG TIME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ps Thank you Harters for your help with your review.

Edited by david goodfellow (log)

"So many places, so little time"



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  • 3 months later...
  • 2 months later...

Dinner at L’enclume.

This is another of the many places I have wanted to visit for a long time. We booked a few months back and I had been expecting a report or two to appear between then and now but not a peep. We were advised that an earlier reservation would be better if we wanted the big menu so we took 7.30. The website does not have a menu’s as such – just three options at £55, £75 & £95. I quite like that there is a little mystery involved.

We opted for Menu 3. Most of the dishes were similar or slight variations on those mentioned previously. All were good and some were better. There was only the odd component here or there not quite hitting the spot.

We ate

Melon & meadowsweet “Martini” fizz

Cumberland cones & domes

Baby beets & fennel snow

Creamed foie, radish & smoked eel

Grown up yolk from the golden egg

Swallet cheese with butternut tart, rabbit & pine nuts

Razor clam with aubergine and sandwort

Kohlrabi in brine, fresh curds, wild roquet

Chantenay carrots, ham fat & nasturtiums

Sea scallop meat and pearls, cepes, liquorice

Chick ‘o’ hake in verjuice


Short rib from Lindale, damson, dittander

Expearamenthol frappe

Stiffy tacky pudding

Surrealists nitro slammer

Black passion


The restaurant was full and the atmosphere was relaxed and jovial with much noise and laughter throughout. Walking about the village it seemed that most places were doing a good trade too. The Cavendish and Rogan & Co for pre dinner drinks had plenty of custom at sevenish. I agree with Spanielking about the standard being 2*.


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