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L'Enclume


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we had the gourmand menu, no point having an other is there really!

one thing to bear in mind is to listen to marys advice re wine, we had half a bottle of champagne and half a bottle of a kiwi sauvignon blanc she recommended and neither of them interfered with the taste of the food, which after all is why you are there! it takes a lot to disuade me from chateau musar when i see it on a list but i'm glad we followed her advice

i really couldnt tell you what was on offer at breakfast, as on our way down the stairs, sara and i said to each other 'hope theres eggs benedict' and lo and behold, there they were.........

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That's interesting feedback on the wine. I didn't feel my wine service really worked and considered it a lowpoint of the meal. However, quibbles aside I'm really, really glad you enjoyed it so much! I can't wait to go back, guess I need to find out when the menu is changing next.

There's another restaurant nearby (Windemere?) which I want to visit. Begins with a G..Maybe a Gy. Can anyone remind me? Has anyone been?

Suzi Edwards aka "Tarka"

"the only thing larger than her bum is her ego"

Blogito ergo sum

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we were going to go as part of a lakeland double header, but in the end couldnt be bothered as we had a wedding to go to in manchester the night after l'enclume. looks good if somewhat traditional, not a criticism, but after visiting l'enclume i dont care if i never visit a traditional restaurant again!

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Fisherman you seem to be having a good new year so far mate!! Very Jealous.....

I went into a French restaraunt and asked the waiter, 'Have you got frog's legs?' He said, 'Yes,' so I said, 'Well hop into the kitchen and get me a cheese sandwich.'

Tommy Cooper

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we had the gourmand menu, no point having an other is there really!

one thing to bear in mind is to listen to marys advice re wine, we had half a bottle of champagne and half a bottle of a kiwi sauvignon blanc she recommended and neither of them interfered with the taste of the food, which after all is why you are there! it takes a lot to disuade me from chateau musar when i see it on a list but i'm glad we followed her advice

i really couldnt tell you what was on offer at breakfast, as on our way down the stairs, sara and i said to each other 'hope theres eggs benedict' and lo and behold, there they were.........

i was wondering about the wine after suzi's post and tried to check the list out on line but its not on.

sounds much like anthony's where its hard to match the food and wine so i just tend to stick to what i like chardonnay/riesling and red burgundy.

Given l'enclume's 20 courses i doubt even scott and i can work our way through a bottle to match each course :biggrin:.

Learned that lesson the hard and expensive way - 6 different wines to match a tasting menu at winteringham fields- between 3 of us.

i was a big fan of ch. musar too but didn't like the '97 vintage at all, i understand the '98 is out soon, if not already.

and will everyone stop going on about eggs benedict! mates ended up at the savoy the other night, guess what they had for breakfast and haven't stopped going on about?

cheers

gary

you don't win friends with salad

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Eggs Benedict :raz: , who mentioned eggs benedict again ?must be a new addition to the 3 course breakfast menu, I`ll look forward to that next time I stay the night.

As for the new menu that you all seem to be looking forward to , I`ll hopefully have wind of a few of the new additions soon.You`ll all be the first to know of course.

My good lady wife had the pleasure of the l`enclume 8 course lunch yesterday and kept me up to date with text messages of each fantastic course whilst I enjoyed the wonderful food in the Sellafield works canteen :angry:

CumbriafoodieCumbriafoodie
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That's the badger. Thanks Jon.

Has anyone been? Gary?

HI SUZI MESSED THE FIRST POST UP WASNT SURE WHAT I WAS DOING, BUT THANKS FOR THE EMAIL.

I'VE BEEN TO HOLBECK NUMEROUS TIMES AS I LIVE HALF AN HOUR AWAY, THE FOOD IS ALWAYS COOKED AND PRESENTED WELL BUT TENDS TO BE PRETTY SAVE, IN FACT I VISITED FOUR TIMES LAST YEAR AND THE MENU WAS MORE OR LESS THE SAME EVERY TIME, VERY MUCH TYPICAL COUNTRY HOUSE "ONE STAR" DISHES.

TRY IT IF YOUR IN THE AREA BUT NOT REALLY WORTH A SPECIAL JOURNEY BUT THEN AGAIN I MIGHT BE BIASED AS L'ENCLUME IS A FIVE MINUTE TAXI JOURNEY A WAY !!!! :biggrin:

HAVE BEEN FREQUENTING L'ENCLUME SINCE IT OPENED BUT NOW THINK CHEF ROGAN HAS FOUND HIS TRUE DIRECTION, BACK FOR DINNER HOPEFULLY NEXT WEEK !

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Did lunch yesterday with the missus. We were the only diners having one of the tasters (the INtroduction is the only one available at lunchtime). I think it's been thoroughly reviewed before, but having eaten at The Samling and Anthony's over the past three days, my vote definitely goes to L'Enclume (the missus' goes to Anthony's). It was satisfying intellectually, emotionally and physically.

Only very minor down point was that they knew I was a fish/veggie man, and even told me what the change to the main on the tasting menu would be, but still meatball and bacon polenta turned up. However, both maitresse and Simon the owner were VERY apologetic, and we got an extra course (scrambled and poached egg with wasabi reduction all back in the eggshell and salted cod froth on top (the latter probs being the highlight of my meal)).

Thing was, it didn't upset us, it was because though the service was spot on (wrong dish aside!), it was also informal--relaxed rather than uptight.

Edited by BertieWooster (log)

It no longer exists, but it was lovely.

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Myself and three friends are off to l'Enclume tomorrow night hopefully taking in the 20 course gourmand, Can't wait!!!!!!!!!!!

Glad to see Bertie enjoyed himself, its a shame he could'nt have made it for dinner and had one of the bigger menu's as this is when you see the true picture of L'Enclume. I've not managed to get to Leeds yet but just read Gary Marshall's latest posting on yet another culinary experience at Anthony's maybe i'll get there in the next couple of weeks and maybe bump into Mr Marshall himself as it sounds like he is part of the fixture and fittings!

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  • 2 weeks later...

I was back in the old County last weekend and had the pleasure of dining and staying at L'Enclume on the Friday. It really was a great experience - certainly up there in my top-meals-ever list (and as I had the Intermediate menu, I'm delighted to still have the gourmand option to look forward to).

I'll try not to repeat what has been said already, but give my overall impressions and what stands out in the memory after a week or so.

The setting of the restaurant struck me a perfect for what Simon Rogan is doing. Cartmel is in an idyllic location, even in last Friday's p*ssing rain. It's just outside the Lake District National park, down on the coastal plain - a tiny old market town, surrounded by green fields and narrow country lanes. L'Enclume itself is suitably rustic and of a nicely balanced design inside - smart yet informal, I felt - with a garden that I'm sure will be a great place to sit out in in the summer, and the river flowing past between the restaurant and the Priory.

Anyway, the meal. I'd originally planned on the gourmand, but my wife was confident (wisely) that there was no way she could manage all 23 courses so she was going for the Intermediate. Penny informed us that if we were going for the tasting menu we'd have to have the same one (which I suppose is fair enough) but as the dishes I really wanted were all on the Intermediate, this was fine by me.

Wine-wise we went for a bottle of Cremant de Loire for the first batch of tasters and a glass of (I think) Cote de Rhone for the mains, cheese and puds. This worked well for me. The CdL, though very pleasant, was not so overpowering as to get in the way of any of the flavours.

Food highlights for me were:

Half soft and scrambled egg, soy, wasabi, smoked cod froth. The soft egg gave it just that little bit more texture than it would have had as scramble, and the soy and cod lifted it nicely.

Flaky crab, curried avocado, parmesan yoghurt sorbet. Loved the sorbet! Combined nicely with the crab.

Cubes from land and sea, eucalyptus hollandaise. Mentioned elsewhere above. I'll just add mm-mmmm!

The main of beef fillet and waberthwaite air dried ham, apple, juniper berry juices was superb also, the ham giving the fillet (which I usually find a bit on the bland side) just enough of a leg up in the flavour stakes. A lovely little rectangle a crunchy (but not crisp) ham sitting on a pillar of apple on the side was like distilled crispy bacon.

I'd have to say that I felt that all the courses were very very good, except for the monkfish (replacing the usual John Dory in this dish), bergamot aromas, bitter caramel, the fish in which seemed to be leave a pool of water on the plate which diluted everything else. I've always found monkfish a bit disappointing though, so maybe it's just me.

Great cheese trolley too. I had to hold myself back from asking for a piece of each of the 20-odd (if not more) on offer.

All the way through the meal service was perfectly pitched - friendly without being matey, and chatty without being invasive. (This was the same throughout our stay, with everyone being perky and friendly at breakfast too, which is some going. Hats off to them all!)

And watch out if you have post-dinner coffee - it came with three petit fours which were pretty much an extra pud - a shot of tiramisu cream, raspberry turkish delight and something else that escapes me, but I've a feeling it was very chocolatey. So go easy on the (thoroughly decent) selection of bread rolls they'll keep offering you to make sure you've still got room.

So, a great meal. I'll definitely be back, both with Jules and with someone who has a bigger appetite. I really have to congratulate Simon Rogan for what he's doing in Cartmel. It was a really ballsy move setting up in such an out of the way location, but it looks like he might just make it a destination restaurant. From what Penny was saying, they seems to be getting North-West Englanders during the week and London/Home County types on the weekend, so I hope that word keeps spreading and L'Enclume goes from strength to strength.

And breakfast was excellent too - yep, eggs benedict, but preceded by some delicious fruit salad. I'd recommend staying at the restaurant - not only is the breakfast excellent, but also income from accommodation can be the sort of extra that keeps places like L'Enclume alive while it builds its reputation.

PS

Edinburgh

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can someone explain what the half soft and scrambled egg is, I'm having trouble imagining it. I like eggs.

I am currently trying to work out a way to store a 6 month old somewhere for the night to get there for my birthday in april. If only they offered a babysitting service.

In fact, they should offer a babysitting service.

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Fisherman - Which Ch. Musar was it? I too have difficulty passing it up on a list, and had the pleasure of seeing an '81 on a list for 46.00 recently!

Allan Brown

"If you're a chef on a salary, there's usually a very good reason. Never, ever, work out your hourly rate."

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  • 2 weeks later...
I am currently trying to work out a way to store a 6 month old somewhere for the night to get there for my birthday in april. If only they offered a babysitting service.

In fact, they should offer a babysitting service.

From the restaurant:

"Just in case it helps your members, L'Enclume can certainly arrange for a babysitter if requested in advance by guests. Alternatively, although they don't have baby listening as such, and a lot of the walkabout baby monitors don't work as the walls are too thick, what most people do is to phone reception from their room, restaurant staff answer and neither puts the phone down. It's a little antiquated, but apparently it works! (They had

this very situation last night and could hear quite clearly the rythymn of a snoring 1.5 year old boy) It can only be done for one room at a time though, as only one phone line is available for this, so would again need to be arranged with L'Enclume in advance."

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From the restaurant:

"Just in case it helps your members, L'Enclume can certainly arrange for a babysitter if requested in advance by guests. Alternatively, although they don't have baby listening as such, and a lot of the walkabout baby monitors don't work as the walls are too thick, what most people do is to phone reception from their room, restaurant staff answer and neither puts the phone down. It's a little antiquated,  but apparently it works! (They had

this very situation last night and could hear quite clearly the rythymn of a snoring 1.5 year old boy) It can only be done for one room at a time though, as only one phone line is available for this, so would again need to be arranged with L'Enclume in advance."

thanks very much for this information.

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I am currently trying to work out a way to store a 6 month old somewhere for the night to get there for my birthday in april. If only they offered a babysitting service.

In fact, they should offer a babysitting service.

From the restaurant:

"Just in case it helps your members, L'Enclume can certainly arrange for a babysitter if requested in advance by guests. Alternatively, although they don't have baby listening as such, and a lot of the walkabout baby monitors don't work as the walls are too thick, what most people do is to phone reception from their room, restaurant staff answer and neither puts the phone down. It's a little antiquated, but apparently it works! (They had

this very situation last night and could hear quite clearly the rythymn of a snoring 1.5 year old boy) It can only be done for one room at a time though, as only one phone line is available for this, so would again need to be arranged with L'Enclume in advance."

Certainly good news for the future with a new munchkin, but this is still not going to get me to L' Enclume next month. :sad:

I won't mention who scheduled a Boy's trip for the day before I take the family away to Ludlow- but I think you can guess. Hence no Green Card :sad:

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I have just returned from a much anticipated lunch at l'Enclume. The lunch menu options are either a three course table d'hote selection or the introductory taste and texture menu, as advertised on their website. We were there (of course!) for the taste and texture menu.

The strong point of the experience was the food. It's clear that there's an immense amount of skill and understanding behind what appears on the plate. The style and intention has obvious connections to the work of Heston Blumenthal at The Fat Duck.

The tasting menu at The Fat Duck is a grand affair: a succession of brilliant set-pieces, some connected by theme, but all delivered with a well polished script which explains the idea behind what youre about to receive.

Lunch at l'Enclume has a much more familiar form. This is partly a result of a smaller number of dishes, but also the courses of the taste and texture menu make their point more harmoniously than the Fat Duck. They build towards the larger show piece of choice: either the loin of lamb with grains of paradise or the chicken with liquorice. The lamb was a lot more interesting than the chicken.

The John Dory -- as a number of people have reported -- was replaced by monkfish. The bergamot accents worked very nicely but the scallop course nearly stole the show from the lamb (which should be interpreted as a compliment). The only item in the two and a half hours of wonderful eating that left me flat was the "lip smacking pizza", which was more "tortilla chip with sundried tomato stuff". The broth served with it, however, was blissful.

My experience at l'Enclume would have been improved by two things: a better prepared staff and some wine recommendations matched for the meal. Service was well intentioned but unskilled and verging on stand-offish. Courses appeared without explanation and information was only solicited with considerable coaxing.

In the absence of the sommelier (who wasn't around for the first half hour), our first waiter offered to help us choose a wine but turned out to only know one and we didn't like the sound of it! There were no wine suggestions matched for the menu. When the sommelier arrived, we negotiated a modest, lightly fruity, South African sauvignon blanc. It didn't clash with anything, but who knows what a really great match could do with really great food.

Was it worth a special trip? Yes. Would I go again? Yes. Could it be improved? Yes.

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The half soft / half scrambled egg is, I think, pretty much as it sounds. I would guess that it's a case of very lightly scrambling some eggs so that they are still very liquid, soft boiling some other eggs, roughly chopping the latter, then mixing the two and filling a vacated eggshell with the combination, plus the wasabi/froth. I've not attempted to replicate it to confirm this, but it seems reasonable and it was very tasty.

I forgot to mention this in my previous posting, but Mr Rogan has been on the receiving end of a shearing, so don't expect to see the flowing curls of some of the publicity shots. Must be easier to control in the kitchen though.

Is the chicken with liquorice a newie? Has the revised spring menu been instigated? (I'm looking for an excuse to revisit) :smile:

PS

Edinburgh

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