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Locally reared chef Richard Swale has created a destination restaurant within this romantic manor house (now a small hotel) near Penrith. Swale trained with top names in London and France and uses classic techniques to produce light, modern cooking from prime Cumbrian ingredients: the owner’s prize-winning beef, for instance, and superb produce from the kitchen gardens. Dinner is served from Tuesday to Saturday in the conservatory dining room overlooking the garden. Texture and flavour receive due importance in such dishes as squid ink tuile, given a hefty umami kick of Parmesan cream; and chunky roast scallops with whipped cod brandade in a rich Madeira and truffle sauce. Turbot on spinach is boosted by salty clams and ras el hanout spicing, while a rich Madagascar chocolate dessert comes with barley ice cream and a scattering of buckwheat. Homemade biscuits, a British cheeseboard and a plate of friands round off things nicely.
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