Monday, March 20, 2017

If You’re Visiting the Lakes This Spring/Summer...

I have a home on the Fells above Grasmere, one of England’s most beautiful villages, on Greenhead Ghyll overlooking the Lion and the Lamb - Helm Crag. We are within 30 – 40 minutes of some of the best food in the UK and if you’re ever in the Lakes, here are some of the best:

Michelin Star Dining:

Forest Side – at the bottom of the road we live in. Fellow Old Lancastrian Andrew Wildsmith, creator of Hipping Hall in Kirby Lonsdale, lured Kevin Tickle from L’Enclume to create a unique forager based dining experience. Eight months after opening, they scored their first Michelin Star.

The Samling – (pictured above) a few miles away, overlooking Lake Windermere has just renovated its kitchen and restaurant – and retained its Star. Home to Renée Zellweger, Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman on their visits to The Lakes – it’s a must visit. Chef Nick Edgar was Head Chef at Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons. A heavyweight.

The Gilpin – Barney and Zoë Cunliffe have turned The Gilpin into a magical paradise. They hired Hrishikesh Desai, the winner of Chefs on Trial in 2015 to create two amazing restaurants, Hrishi at Gilpin and Gilpin Spice. Won their first Star last year. A beautiful spot.

My Favorite Three Restaurants:

The Jumble Room – in Grasmere. Opened 21 years ago by Andy and Christine Hill, who still run – and love it. “The very best ingredients, cooked with love and served with pride.” Funky Fun.

The Old Stamp House – in Ambleside. My favourite chef, Ryan Blackburn, and my favorite front-of-house man, his brother Craig. Cumbrian fare at its best. In the old Post Office where Wordsworth worked.

Lake Road Kitchen – 10 yards away from The Old Stamp House in Ambleside. In the Good Food Guide’s Top 50 UK restaurants. Home grown and foraged local produce. Casual. Easy.

Four Great Pubs:

The Drunken Duck – just outside Ambleside. Simply the best.

The Punch Bowl – at Crosthwaite. Arthur Bridgeman Quin presiding – UK Young Chef of the Year. 21 years young!

The Lyth Valley Hotel – just reopened. One to watch.

The Wheatsheaf at Brigsteer – Cumbria’s Pub of the Year.

So take a walk in the Fells – then treat yourself to some warm Cumbrian hospitality and great local food and drink.

KR