Not only is it the home of spectacular scenery, charming towns and a wealth of adventurous pursuits, the Lake District is a great destination for foodies.
Here’s Part 1 of our guide to the top 10 gastro pubs and restaurants around the Lakes.
The George & Dragon in Clifton, close to Penrith was named Cumbria Life Magazine’s Dining Pub of the Year 2014, and rightly so. Offering period surroundings reflecting close links to the Lowther Estate, enjoy the blackboard of daily specials majoring on locally sourced ingredients prepared with a European twist. Best to reserve a table so you don’t miss delights such as Lowther venison liver with truffle potatoes or Askham pork with cabbage, pancetta and spring onions.
You’ll need to forward plan to eat at the Drunken Duck Inn – billed as the Lakes’ original gastro pub - either to make sure you beat the lunchtime queues or book way in advance to bag a highly-prized table for dinner. Located high up between Coniston and Hawkshead, this gorgeously rustic dining spot offers restaurant standard food, washed down with ales from the in-house Barngates Brewery.
Michelin stars and mountains
Fans of experimental cuisine will revel in the spectacle – and the food – on offer at L’Enclume , Simon Rogan’s Michelin-starred palace of modern British cuisine in Cartmel. Dishes here are based on seasonal ingredients, often foraged locally, and while presentation may bring Heston Blumenthal to mind (comparisons are often drawn), you’ll find a traditional dish behind the creation on your plate.
Michelin stars and stunning fell views combine with fine dining at Holbeck Ghyll, Windermere, one of the most sought after dinner venues in the Lakes. The popularity of this restaurant has increased since it featured on BBC2’s The Trip, but the reputation is well-deserved. The food here has a definite French influence, which you’ll enjoy in the civilised surroundings of the oak panelled, bay windowed dining room overlooking our own Lake Windermere.
Fish for the fifth!
Fifth on our list of top 10 Gastro pubs and restaurants in the Lakes is Hooked, in Windermere Town, which offers diners first-class fish and seafood on its seasonally sensitive menu. Treats include hake with puy lentils and salsa verde, black bream with tomato risotto, lemon sole with caper butter, and local specialities such as Morecambe Bay shrimps and local rainbow trout.
Tune in next week for our part two of the must visit gastro pubs and restaurants in the Lakes.