Saturday 30 July 2016

The Forest Side - Grasmere, Cumbria #MichelinStar

Update: The Forest Side has been awarded its first Michelin star in the 2017 guide. 

I first visited Chef Kevin Tickle’s The Forest Side back in April (here) and have been keen to return ever since. On my last visit, I enjoyed the 10 course “Grand 'Un’’ tasting menu – this time we opted for the 6 course “L’Al ‘Un”.

This time we went with even higher expectations and I’m pleased to report, they were met… with bells on!

Smoked eel – onion, lovage

Carrot & black pudding

Pea wafer – grated hen’s yolk, cured ham emulsion

Heritage tomatoes cooked in elderflower – goats curd & caviar

Sourdough & “garden butter”

Duck heart salad – savoury, turnip preserved green walnut

Lemon sole – Morecambe Bay shrimps, pickled new season girolles

Will & Emma’s Herdwick hogget from ower yonder,
heritage potato, minted peas & meadow clippings

Raspberry – verbena pearls, yogurt

English blueberries – sorrel & goats milk

Sour cherry – sweet cheese & rosehip

Pebbles – meadowsweet & white chocolate

Douglas Fir Turkish Delight

Friday 29 July 2016

Simpsons Restaurant, Birmingham #MichelinStar

Over 3 years had passed since I last visited Simpsons. In this time, they have undertaken a major refurbishment and the dining room is looking sweet!

Chef Owner Andreas Antona and Chef Director Luke Tipping still lead the Michelin starred brigade but now they are joined by Nathan Eades as head chef.

Three of our party dined from the Set Lunch which offers three course for £35 (3 plus ½ bottle of wine for £45). I ordered from the A la Carte – 3 courses for £60.

Highlights of the meal included the Squid Ink Cracker snack, topped with an intense oceanic hit of cod’s roe; the Guinea Fowl with its classically rich glossy sauce and the sophisticated hazelnut Soufflé with a playful blast of popcorn.

Cured Salmon – pickled beetroot, wasabi

Asparagus – goat’s curd, wild garlic, grains, shoots & flowers

Plaice – potatoes, sea herbs, lovage, smoked eel cream

Pork Belly – carrots, girolles, grelots, spelt, tarragon

Strawberry Cheesecake – honey ice cream, strawberry jelly

Cheese from the trolley – rye bread crackers, pickled onions, quince & orange peels

Beef Tartare – chicory, smoked mayonnaise, crispy rice, flowers

Guinea Fowl – carrots, girolles, grelots, spelt, tarragon

Soufflé – hazelnut, popcorn

Coffee & Petit Fours

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