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Tucked away in Stockport’s Rostron Brow (once infamous for its ale houses of ill-repute), ex-L’Enclume chef Sam Buckley’s curiously named gaff is a bright, loft-style space with an open kitchen and views across the rooftops towards Robinsons Brewery. There’s no regular menu; instead, diners are offered a procession of small plates and snacks ‘inspired by the day’s catch, harvest and slaughter’, with virtually nothing going to waste. Thrilling combinations abound, and Buckley’s “inspiring” kitchen demonstrates remarkably high levels of precision, imagination and skill across the board. Top calls from our visit included delicate raw langoustine carpaccio with fragrant rose, plum and lavender, plump steamed mussels with a caramelised mussel and hawthorn broth, slowly roasted pigeon breast and leg accompanied by sweet salt and a hint of nutty morels, and a Victoria plum cake with plum stone-infused cream. Dishes are accompanied by specially matched wines or innovative juices designed to complement the culinary creations. In all, this is an electrifyingly unique dining experience – and a revelation for Stockport.
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