Stovell’s first opened its doors back in 2012, and is the brainchild of chef patron Fernando Stovell, whose vision sees modern European dishes given Mexican accents. The restaurant finds its home in a sympathetically restored “mind-your-head” 16th-century farmhouse that blends rough-hewn beams, mullioned windows and low ceilings with vivid wallpaper, contemporary furnishings and deep-pile carpets – a “glorious setting”, says one reader.
Chef Stovell’s “epic food” continues to receive rave reviews as he fashions complex, finely honed dishes strewn with global influences – from an octopus ceviche bursting with freshness to Goosnargh duck served with cherry and pistachios, or citrus wood roasted Cornish Lobster which you can pair with a side of duck fat chips.
There are also pleasingly simple dishes from the wood-fired grill, such as cured côte du pork served with burnt broccoli, mash and persillade or perhaps the fish of the day which is grilled over citrus wood. Those looking to have the full Stovell’s experience can choose to dine from the dedicated tasting menu, which is inspired by Fernando’s Mexican homeland – think Mexican-style street snacks followed by the likes of soft shell crab with pumpkin and serrano, and white mole with wood-roasted carrots.
To round off your meal, don’t miss out on Stovell’s fun range of puddings. Tuck into sweet treats such as a pineapple and coconut cheesecake or the ‘pinata’ which is made with chocolate nougat, Brazilian nuts and milk. The restaurant’s selection of uniquely flavoured ice creams and sorbets is worth exploring too – flavours include fig leaf, smoked milk and beetroot, lavender and elderflower.
The global wine list offers plenty of keenly priced drinking, but also check out the fab barrel-aged cocktails and “amazing” home-distilled gin, while the amiable staff “make you feel very welcome”. “Outstanding food, beautifully presented” says one diner – we couldn’t agree more.