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slice of foodie heaven

Whoop!

What do you call a chubby butternut squash? A plumpkin!

No.95 November 2019

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W E A RE T HE

CHA MP I O

RAT E D

A A little Magazine BSME + INDEPP PENDENT Awards! AWARDS PUBLISHER AWARDS

OUR 2019 XMAS GIFT GUIDE HAS LAN DED!

(you're welcome)

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CRUMBS BATH + BRISTOL NO.95 NOVEMBER 2019Â

Shortlist ed for

M EE T T HE W I N N ERS

CRUMBS AWARDS 2019

OF T HE

A L IT TLE BIT C O U N T RY

EATS

M EET

B E AT S

AT A JAW-DROPPING

BA N Q UET

THE BUTTERNUT EFFECT

BY EX-BATH RUGBY S TA RS AND!

B IA N CH I S HO M EW OO D RO SE M A RI NO

GREAT RURAL PUBS

( I N R EA C H O F T H E C IT Y)

T NU TY BY N A T UR E! CRUM

B SM A G .COM

BUTTERNUT ANIS DED HALICNDIOUSSO,MENUASTRAITIOUS, S Q U A S H GREEK GOURD


Tel: 01225 585 100

rob@claytonskitchen.com

15a George Street, Bath BA1 2EN

www.claytonskitchen.com

a ClaytonsKitch

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claytons_kitchen

B O O K N O W F O R T H E C H R I S T M A S PA R T Y M E N U £45 for 3 courses

N E W : P R I VAT E D I N I N G R O O M

LUNCH MENU

Opening Times

2 courses £20 | 3 courses £25

Mon to Thu: 1200-1430 & 1800-2130

Monday – Saturday from 12pm.

Sat: 1200-1500 & 1730-2200

Main menus and more can be found on our website.

Sun: 1200-1500 & 1800-2100

Fri: 1200-1430 & 1800-2200


OH MY SQUASH It’s not often I need to be reminded of how fortunate I am to live on this fine patch – bursting at the seams as it is with awesome food and drink businesses and ambitious culinary entrepreneurs – not to mention be in a position to take advantage of it all. That said, I still come away from the Crumbs Awards each year with a real fresh perspective, and newly bolstered appreciation for all the insanely hard-working, driven and brave people that occupy each corner of our food landscape. Hearing stories from the judges about how businesses go the extra mile to benefit their communities, help the environment, support other small businesses, make their customers smile and stand up for what they believe is right is nothing short of inspirational. After all, as customers, we, of course, only see a tiny fraction of the story behind the plate of food that we’re served, drink we’re poured or product we pick off the shelf. Often, we have no idea of the lengths the team – not to mention their suppliers and, in turn, the original producers – have gone to, the effort that they’ve poured in. Following the recent ceremony, you can now meet all of our admirable 2019 winners in a special seven-page feature this issue. And, in timely news, Crumbs has been shortlisted for its own awards too, for our art director – shout out to Trev! – and a particularly memorable (if we do say so ourselves) cover. What are you waiting for? Tuck in.

Jessica Carter, Editor jessica.carter@mediaclash.co.uk

The sky might be grey, but autumn’s bounty sure is sunny

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TA B LE O F CO NTE NTS SHORTLISTED FOR THREE 2019 MAGAZINE AWARDS!

Finalist

STARTERS

MAINS

08 HERO Squash darn it 12 OPENINGS ETC What’s going down on the local food scene?

56 CHAMP SITE! Meet the inspirational Crumbs Awards 2019 winners 69 DON’T MISS A BEAT A new event is heading for Bath, blending great beats with memorable eats

CHEF! 22 Winter squash casserole, by Gary Say 25 Bream with Mornay sauce, by Danny Ross 26 Southern-fried rabbit, by James Golding 28 Venison carpaccio, by Tim Maddams 30 Smoked haddock with curried lentils, by Jenny Chandler

ISSUE 95 NOVEMBER 2019 EDITOR

JESSICA CARTER jessica.carter@mediaclash.co.uk DEVELOPMENT EDITOR

MATT BIELBY matt.bielby@mediaclash.co.uk ONLINE EDITOR

DAN IZZARD dan.izzard@mediaclash.co.uk

10 Crispy fried squash with feta and honey, by Freddy Bird 17 Poppyseed cakes, by Romy Gill

ADVERTISING MANAGER

JON HORWOOD jon.horwood@mediaclash.co.uk ADVERTISING EXECUTIVE

RUSSELL SEALY russell.sealy@mediaclash.co.uk

WHAT SUP? 37 THE DRIP FEED What’s new in the drinks world? 38 THE WINE GUY Andy Clarke is all about a new kind of culinary caper

ADVERTISING EXECUTIVE

CLAIRE HAWKINS claire.hawkins@mediaclash.co.uk PRODUCTION AND DISTRIBUTION MANAGER

SARAH KINGSTON sarah.kingston@mediaclash.co.uk PRODUCTION DESIGNER

KITCHEN ARMOURY

GEMMA SCRINE gemma.scrine@mediaclash.co.uk

44 NO TIME LIKE THE PRESENT Our 2019 Christmas gift guide has landed, and boy, is it getting us pumped for Crimbo

CHIEF EXECUTIVE

JANE INGHAM jane.ingham@mediaclash.co.uk CHIEF EXECUTIVE large version

76 Bianchis 78 Homewood 80 Rosemarino

ADDITIONAL RECIPES

ART DIRECTOR

TREVOR GILHAM

GREG INGHAM greg.ingham@mediaclash.co.uk

AFTERS

large version

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MediaClash, Circus Mews House, Circus Mews, Bath BA1 2PW 01225 475800 mediaclash.co.uk

82 LITTLE BLACK BOOK Aine Morris has some great tips for hungry Bristol locals...

BE N RO BI NS

© All rights reserved. May not be reproduced without written permission of MediaClash. MediaClash reserves the right to reject any material and to edit such prior to publication. Opinions are those of individual authors. Printed on paper from a wellmanaged source; printer is certified to ISO 14001 environmental management. This month we galavanted around Malaga in Spain, eating all the tapas and drinking far too much vermouth; checked out the new Black Rock whisky bar in Bristol; and went to Highgrove Gardens to see Angela Hartnett speak

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The mighty Crumbs awards: sort of like Arthur’s sword in the stone, but with an added fork


N ew u en M

Serving up an ever-changing menu of eight plates, this is a place where the little things matter.

Open Tuesday to Sunday Dinner only from 5:30pm 3 North Parade Passage, Bath BA1 1NX 01225 724111 – eightinbath.co.uk

Welcome to Mantra, an Indian Restaurant in the heart of Bath, that specialises in serving progressive Indian food. Mantra is a family run authentic Indian restaurant. Our dishes are healthily packed with flavour, crunch, punch and zing offering plenty of choice to vegetarians and vegans.Inspired by seasonal ingredients, our food contains only the freshest produce prepared in a way that captures the amazing diversity of India’s regional cuisines and childhood street food memories. 5, Bladud Buildings, The Paragon, Bath BA1 5LS Tel: 01225 446 332 Email: info@mantraofbath.co.uk | www.mantraofbath.co.uk


STA RT ERS

INNOVATIONS, REVELATIONS AND TASTY AMUSE-BOUCHES

NOVEMBER NOSH

Inclusive eating, sustainable snacking and drinks to warm the cockles – just a taster of what’s going on… 6 NOVE MBE R

17 NOV E M BE R

Amanda Humphrey of Maker’s Mark will be hosting this event at Bath’s The Dark Horse along with the team at Independent Spirit, guiding guests through the distillery’s range of bourbons. Tickets are available online for £25 and include food and a welcome drink. darkhorsebar.co.uk

This celebration of Georgian food, wine and culture will be happening at Flow in central Bristol. There will be a feast of vegetarian food from the Caucasus region, accompanied by five Georgian wines (the country’s well-known for its vino production for good reason). Tickets are £35 from Eventbrite. eventbrite.com

THE WHISKY SOCIAL

SUNDAY SUPRA CLUB

9 NOVE MBE R

21 NOV E M BE R

More than 70 stalls will set up shop at Bath Pavillion for this vegan celebration, with cookery demos, workshops talks and kids’ activities also taking place throughout the day. Tickets are £3 on the door, with under 16s going free. veganeventsuk.co.uk

Clifton’s Bar 44 is celebrating Spanish Beronia as opposed to French Beaujolais this November. Tuck into five courses of Spanish tapas, washed down with Beronia Rioja. Tickets are £60 per person; get in touch with the restaurant to book. bar44.co.uk

BATH WINTER VEGAN FESTIVAL

BEAUJOLAIS DAY WITH A DIFFERENCE

14 NOVE MBE R

RIVERSTATION VEGAN WINE DINNER

23 NOV E M BE R

Run in support of charity Phase Worldwide, this special four-course vegan dinner with wine will see every penny of ticket sales helping to improve the quality of life for Nepalese communities. Tickets are £50 and include arrival drinks and canapés. riverstation.co.uk 14 NOVE MBE R

CLIMATE AND BIODIVERSITY CRISIS CONFERENCE

FREE FROM FESTIVAL

All manner of UK-made gluten-, dairyand refined sugar-free products will be showcased at this event in Bristol’s Passenger Shed – think everything from gluten-free beer and organic wine to refined sugar-free chocolate. Expect cookery demos and talks, as well as live music. Tickets are £10 and are available online via Eventbrite. freefromfestival.co.uk 3 0 NOV E M BE R

This conference at City Hall, aimed at those working in the food and drink trade, will look at the state of the current crisis and the role the food industry plays. Expect to leave with a better knowledge of the subject and ideas on how to take action. Tickets are free and can be booked online via Eventbrite. eventbrite.co.uk

BATH PROSECCO FESTIVAL

There will be more than 40 types of sparkling wine in attendance at this fizzfocused event at Bath Pavillion, as well as a decent selection of gin and Italian food. Prosecco cocktails will also be on the go. Tickets are £12.50 and include a welcome drink and Prosecco flute. proseccofestival.co.uk

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Hero Ingredients

BUTTERNUT SQUASH

Tasty, cheap and versatile – if notoriously pesky to cut and prepare – meltingly gorgeous butternut squash is the Most Valuable Player in autumn’s veggie line-up

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S

ummer vegetables promise light, fresh, delicate flavours; the warm-weather seasons are all about juicy tomatoes and crisp cucumbers. But once the cold comes around again, we want something a little more solid and hearty. Enter the creamy, buttery, seriously tasty butternut squash – technically a fruit, of course, though we treat it as a veggie – which is as versatile as it is healthy, adding colour and sweetness to a myriad dishes. Butternut squash offers gorgeous golden-orange flesh that can’t help but stand out against the whites and browngreens of most winter veg, while its sweetness feels something of a luxury next to their frugal austerity. And as they’re great keepers, butternut squash harvested in the autumn will last you for months; indeed, they keep so well you can pretty much find them all year round. All squash, be they pumpkins or courgettes, come from the Americas, making them an ancient food, despite only being known in our neck of the woods fairly recently. Folk have been eating these vine-growers for 5,000 years, it’s believed, and the Incas of the 15th century certainly cultivated squash extensively. Native American tribes would bury their dead alongside squash to nourish them in the afterlife, but though the Massachuset tribe’s term for them – ‘askutasquash’, from which we take our word ‘squash’ – literally means ‘eaten raw’, few would tuck into an uncooked squash today. That’s part of the name sorted then, while the ‘butternut’ bit comes from the texture and taste – a little bit nutty, a little bit buttery – and was added when the first modern varieties were developed in Stow, Massachusetts by a

S T A R T E R S

chap called Charles Leggett. A close cousin to the pumpkin, courgette and cucumber in the Cucurbitaceae family, butternut squash was created surprisingly late – in the 1940s – as a veggie to be harvested late and mature, then to last across the winter hungry gap. Hence the hard skin, so different to summer squash which is harvested soft and early. Butternut squash is easily recognised by its pale beige hide and distinctive pear-like shape, generally fat and bulbous at the bottom, which contains the seeds, and more tube-like at the top. A good squash should feel heavy for its size (so full of moistening liquid) with wrinkle-free, unblemished skin and no soft or mouldy patches. If you can push a fingernail easily into the rind it will have been picked too early, so will lack flavour and sweetness. (Unlike some vegetables, the bigger your butternut is, the tastier it’ll be.) Yours may last up to three months left untouched in a cool, dry, dark place, and a week or two in the fridge once cut. It’s easy to tell when you’ve been fridging them too long: look for a slimy surface and acidic smell. When prepping, the best place to start is by topping and tailing so your squash has a nice flat bum, then either slice through the base of the neck so you’ve got two manageable pieces, or cut lengthways. Scoop out and throw away the fibrous strings, but hang onto the seeds – they’re okay to eat raw, but better toasted. We’re not going to lie, though: this whole business can be annoying. The skins are thick, the flesh hard to cut, the shape kinda awkward. If you want lots of evenly-sized pieces, a squash with a thicker upper portion may be your friend (it will also have a relatively small seed cavity, rendering more flesh), but we embrace the inevitable and say there’s a certain rustic appeal to more randomly-sized chunks. If your squash is proving particularly hard to cut, try piercing it a few times with a fork, then microwaving for a couple of minutes to soften it up. Peeling? Do it either at the start or once you’ve chopped your squash into bits, but – good news – you might not need to bother at all if roasting or grilling, two techniques that really concentrate the flavour. (Add a little oil and the edges will caramelise nicely too.) When cooking, your first aim is to make it tender. Boiling is quicker than baking, but loses some of the sugars into the water, so is best for soups or other dishes where you’ll use that liquid too. Steaming also works, and microwaving – whatever you do, squash is so dense it won’t fall to pieces – but, most of the time, roasting is the way to go.

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The best thing about butternut squash is that it goes with just about anything. Roast it Mediterranean-style with herbs, garlic and tomato, then finish with parmesan; cover it with chilli seasoning and oregano for a more Mexican take, then pair with feta; or go further north and cook with maple syrup, butter, nuts and spices. Sticking with the Americas, consider butternut squash in a taco or tortilla, with soured cream, cheese and guacamole. You can hollow them out, stuff them with rice or a black bean chilli, then roast them whole; you can use them as an accompaniment or filling for pasta (butternut squash mac ’n’ cheese is a great healthy kid-pleaser); and you can add them to curries (everything from a dal to a Thai). Also, think in terms of gratins, casseroles and stews. Butternut squash works well with goat’s cheese on bruschetta or in a winter salad, perhaps with chargrilled radicchio, red onion, pumpkin seeds, winter leaves, and either feta or goat’s cheese. It’s a smart addition to smoothies and works in desserts too, perhaps paired with coconut in a cake or pecans in a custard tart. Butternut batter can be used to make breads and pancakes while, cooked and puréed, it even makes a simple – but delicious – baby food. Butternut works well as a support act too, lightly oiled chunks roasting beautifully alongside chicken or red meats, or making a great mash (perhaps lightly spiced with nutmeg or cinnamon) either on its own, or combined with potato and maybe cream. In fact, butternut squash is a great alternative to sweet potato or regular potato in many a dish; it even works as a pizza topping. And then, of course, there’s that favourite of every vegetarian café: butternut squash soup. (Cook it in stock or microwave it, then purée before adding milk, cream or butter – your choice.) Deep orange and velvet-textured, it’s especially pleasing when finished with toasted nuts, grated citrus fruit zest, fresh mint, sour cream or a drizzle of maple syrup; if you’re not bothered about keeping things vegetarian, crumbled bacon goes well too. A happy all-rounder, then, and we haven’t even mentioned the well-balanced nutrient profile, for butternut’s full of complex carbs and dietary fibre, and heavy in vitamins A and C. (There are even useful amounts of magnesium, calcium, potassium and iron.) We love this stuff, basically. It’s one of autumn’s all-star ingredients, a staple of our short-day shopping basket, and – just when you thought things couldn’t get any better – yes, it’s relatively inexpensive too.


R E C I P E

Hero Ingredients After new ways to use this familiar old-faithful ingredient? Freddy Bird has just the recipe... This is almost certainly my favourite way to eat butternut squash. It’s great as a snack, starter or even alongside a few lamb chops! This autumnal ingredient is a versatile one, as we all know, so here’s a versatile dish in the spirit of the thing.

CRISPY FRIED BUTTERNUT SQUASH WITH FETA, OREGANO AND ORANGE BLOSSOM HONEY SERVES 2 1 butternut squash 100g plain flour (gluten-free also works) pinch bicarbonate of soda fizzy water vegetable oil, for deep frying 30g feta orange blossom honey, to drizzle pinch wild oregano, to serve 1 Peel the butternut and cut off the bulbous bottom half (saving the other end for roasting another time), then scrape out all the seeds with a spoon and discard. 2 Thinly slice the butternut into rings about ¼ cm thick (use a mandolin if you have one). 3 Now make a batter. First mix the flour with the bicarbonate of soda and a pinch of salt, and then slowly pour in the fizzy water, whisking all the time, until you have a pancake batter consistency. 4 Heat a deep fat fryer (or pour about 4cm vegetable oil into a deep, heavy-based pan over the hob) to 190C. 5 Dip the butternut squash rings into the batter, then carefully drop them into the oil (you’ll need to do this in batches). Cook until lightly golden and crispy (about 3-4 minutes), then remove them with a slotted spoon and place on a plate lined with kitchen paper to dry. Lightly season with fine salt. 6 When you’re ready to eat, arrange the squash on a plate, crumble over the feta, drizzle with the honey and add a good pinch of wild oregano. Eat immediately.

littlefrench.co.uk

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Openings etc

Vegan-friendly tapas? It’s a thing!

POWER PLANTS

The head chef of a Bristolian Michelinstarred restaurant has set up a brand new venture of his own. David Hazell, who led the kitchen at Paco Tapas until recently, is now showcasing imaginative plant-based dishes as Casa Verde, in residence at No.12 Easton in the evenings. From Tuesday to Saturday, Hazell is cooking up vegan-friendly Spanish tapas dishes; think heritage carrot with sesame and orange, roast cherry tomatoes with hazelnut migas, and classic tapas favourites like tortilla and patatas bravas. It just so happens, too, that No.12 owner Maddie Andrews sure knows her wine, so the menu is complemented fittingly by a solid range of vino and sherry.   no12easton.com

SO FRESH AND SO CLEAN

A group of local food professionals have launched a new venture, promising handmade, ethically focused food and drink, delivered to your door. Freshford Food Co is a new kind of online grocery shop: its ever-changing product range is made by hand in tiny batches using local, top-drawer ingredients. Think golden-crusted pies with broths and chutneys, juicy burgers with fresh buns and sauces, and charcuterie. There are loads of veggie options on offer, and the range is set to expand too; homemade condiments (think date ketchup and bourbon jalapenos) and seasonally specific selections are all in the making. Determined to help put more sustainable, local and seasonal food on dinner tables – and to support the local community in doing so – this ambitious team have deliciously high hopes. freshfordfoodco.com

Spotted the new seafood and oyster van in Bristol? Winkle Picker can be found at St Nick’s Street Food Market every Tuesday and Friday, dishing up fresh, sustainable seafood, caught by dayboats largely on the South West coast. Expect the marine-themed mobile kitchen to be dishing up the likes of a popcorn cockle bap with laverbread mayo, as well as deep-fried oysters, crab croquettes, mussels, chips... Some serious seaside bounty. The van also caters for weddings and events – did someone say oyster and Champagne bar? Inspired by the appetite for shucked oysters and sea urchins at places like Borough Market, chef Rachel Bull knew that a similar offering would go down a treat in Bristol. With a long career in food, Rachel cooked at Wallfish in Clifton and has also run the hugely popular Clandesdiner supper club in Bristol for six years and counting.  winklepicker.org.uk

PICK BAIT Winkles on wheels...

We’re most intrigued by the yellow loner at the top…

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S T A R T E R S

SMART ATTACK

StreetSmart is back for 2019, giving diners and restaurants the chance to make a difference to local homeless people over the harshest months. StreetSmart is a charity that was founded in 1998; it works by having restaurants sign up to have punters add a voluntary £1 donation to each bill throughout November and December. It’s raised millions in its 11-year history for homeless charities, and we know that Bath and Bristol are key areas in helping grow that total. So, if you’re a restaurant owner, head to the website to sign up (it doesn’t cost you a thing), and if you’re a hungry diner, look out for the StreetSmart logo when you’re choosing where to eat for dinner. Doing a good deed has never been more delicious. streetsmart.org.uk

NEW KID ON THE BLOCK

Say hi to Kit Harris, who’s now heading up the Combe Grove kitchen So, Kit, what was your first job in the industry? I was a kitchen porter at Gorton’s in Tavistock. And what’s the toughest job you’ve tackled so far? It has to be those I’ve had while working abroad; language barriers only add to the learning curve! C’mon, you can spare a pound

How would you describe your style of cooking? Natural. I want ingredients to speak for themselves. If it belongs on the palate, it goes on the plate. And how have you approached the menu at Combe Grove? By adding some extra colour and a touch of fusion, but keeping it approachable. Also by taking advantage of seasonal produce from local food heroes Eades and Fussels.

THE QUAY, THE SECRET

Can we expect many more changes now you’re at the helm? Absolutely. Little by little, we’ll be adding more exciting events, cookery courses and such. What are your favourite ingredients at the moment? I love working with the different squashes that are in season right now – especially the ones we’re growing on-site!

Takvor: now to be found at Kiosk 3

What makes the local foodie scene so great? The great local producers. Our nearest is Castle Farm, which is less than three miles down the road. They’ve been organic since 2000 and are perfect for us at Combe Grove. Favourite cookery book? Nathan Outlaw’s British Seafood.

Clifton’s global tapas restaurant, New Moon, has opened a second site right by the river. New Moon on the Quay shares the same global small-plate concept as its sister location – think dishes ranging from balsamic-glazed charred octopus to Asian pork belly with soy and ginger, and aubergine rolls stuffed with goat’s cheese and basil mousse. Also at the new gaff, located in the standalone building known as Kiosk 3 on Hanover Quay, the team will be bringing back the popular weekend breakfasts from their days at the original Gloucester Road restaurant (New Moon originally opened there in 2014, before relocating to Clifton). Takvor Terlemezian, who owns the restaurant with wife Irina, is now cooking in the kitchen here, with the Clifton location in the safe hands of its seasoned head chef. newmoontapas.co.uk 13 CRUMBSMAG.COM

Foodie heroes? Raymond Blanc. Which other local restaurants do you like to eat in? I love The Garricks Head in Bath city centre, pub food at a very high standard. The Wheelwrights Arms in Monkton Combe is also my kind of place to eat. What dish reminds you of home? Wild trout with Devon asparagus and herb butter. combegrove.com


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2 THE RISING SUN (Pensford)

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Sat almost directly between the cities of Bath and Bristol, this village pub is perched on the edge of the River Chew, with the impressive Pensford Viaduct on just the other side of the water. It’s a family-run freehouse, known for its homecooked meals (which now feature pork and lamb reared by the team on their new smallholding). The likes of pulled pork brioche bun with red cabbage, crispy confit chicken leg with celeriac gratin and roast courgettes, and beer-battered fish and chips grace the comforting pub menu, while there are daily changing specials on the go too, depending on what’s been harvested from the garden. At the bar are local ales and ciders, including rotating guest varieties. Sounds like just the stuff for cosying up with under those low, beamed ceilings. Save us a spot next to the fire. risingsunpensford.com

T rio

COUNTRY FILES This autumn, we’re heading out of the city for brisk country walks and pitstops in great village pubs – like these

1 1 THE SWAN (Wedmore)

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The Somerset levels are looking rather handsome at this time of year, with pepperings of crunchy, golden leaves and lush green grass. Head to the Avalon Marshes and you might even see the impressive starling murmurations. Nearby is the village of Wedmore, populated by buildings that have stood for hundreds of years – including 18th-century pub, The Swan. This village boozer sure is a cosy one, with stone-flagged floors, leather sofas and wood burners. Taking care of the food is executive chef Tom Blake (formerly of River Cottage) and head chef Sam Sperring-Trendl, both of whom have a real focus on the locality of their ingredients and serve up the likes of slow-roast duck leg with crispy pork belly and puy lentils, and pumpkin, chilli and cavolo nero lasagne with wild mushrooms, romesco sauce and pumpkin seed pesto. Top tip: add a side of skinny fries with cheese and cider fondue sauce. theswanwedmore.com

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3 THE WHEATSHEAF (Combe Hay)

This gaff is about as dog-friendly as it gets – you’ll find its resident spaniels happily roaming around and there is plenty of dog walking potential in the rural Cotswoldian village of Combe Hay and beyond. When you’re both tired of all that walking and sniffing, head to this welcoming pub, with its inviting feels and friendly locals. Grab a seat by the fire and get a drink in: there’s a selection of beer and ciders made nearby, plenty of well-chosen wines, and a list of gins to take your pick from. Known for its great food, The Wheatsheaf serves modern British dishes that follow the seasons – pub classics like quality ham, egg and chips sit next to restaurant-esque meals such as sea bass with scallop and lobster bisque. Right now there’s plenty of local game on the go, and the recent partridge Wellington certainly caught our eye... wheatsheafcombehay.com


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Ki tchen Library From fresh leaves to ‘swampy sludge’, this month’s mixed bunch of cookbooks will get you trying dishes and ingredients you may never have thought of – or previously dared approach…

WILD

Joel Gazdar and Aiste Gazdar (Vermilion, £20) London’s Wild Food Café has two bright, inviting sites – Neal’s Yard and Islington – and quite the rep as a casual vegan restaurant. Its cookbook takes things more seriously than you might expect, however: sure, there are plenty of tempting recipes here (cheesecakes and smoothies, salads and ‘Goddess Bowls’), mostly of the brunch and light dinner variety, but what makes it either inspirational or annoying – your mileage may differ – are all the holistic wellbeing practices, transformative rituals, and ‘timeless wisdom of the wild’ that are included too. We begin with a somewhat baffling ‘wild wellbeing compass’, then run through chapters called things like ‘Air-Know’, ‘Fire-Glow’ and ‘Heart of the Cosmos’, each divided into Rituals and Edibles sections. Some of this went over our heads, to be honest, but that doesn’t really matter: the food here is both intriguing and super-healthy, from the stuffed figs wrapped in coconut bacon to the upsidedown chestnut and pine nut pie. MATT BIELBY

LEAF

Catherine Phipps (Hardie Grant, £25) This latest book from food writer Catherine Phipps – best known for her well-received Citrus – is subtitled ‘lettuce, greens, herbs, weeds’, which hardly sounds like the most exciting shopping list on earth. But, actually, Catherine knocks it out of the park once again

with Leaf, thanks to witty, well-researched writing, ace pictures by Mowie Kay, plus endless useful tips on salt preserving, making herb oils and butters, foraging, ferments and the like. Best of all are her 120 or so recipes, which feature leaves, sure, but don’t make them the be all and end all. Think winter salad of red leaves, mackerel and orange; caramelised endive gratin; spinach and pomegranate pie; plus soups, sides, desserts and more. There’s an incredible-sounding Louisiana gumbo, which Catherine describes as a “gloomy, dirty, muddy, swampy sludge” that miraculously turns into something spectacular, and a Brussels sprout Christmas tree – all cheesy and mustardy with the sprouts as baubles. If your lot won’t eat their Brussels, this definitely sounds worth trying. MATT BIELBY

FROM THE OVEN TO THE TABLE Diana Henry (Mitchell Beazley, £25)

Whatever prized kitchen tool or oft-used gadget we swear we couldn’t live without, we all really know it’s the oven that our culinary endeavours revolve around. In this, her 12th book, Diana Henry pays homage to the magic that happens in the belly of our cookers, her approachable recipes coming in the form of bakes and roasts, often using just one pot. If the oven is at the centre of cookery, then the table is at the core of eating; these unintimidating but imaginative meals are just the kind that you’d feel proud presenting to your dinner compadres and making the

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centrepiece of a get-together. Chapters cover simple suppers, seasonal veg, grains and pulses, meat and fish, and puddings and cake, with recipes ranging from roast squash and tofu with soy, honey and ginger to baked beans with smoked bacon, pork belly and treacle; pot roast Indian-spiced chicken with coconut to baked nectarines with pistachio. JESSICA CARTER

TARTINE

Elizabeth Prueitt and Chad Robertson (Chronicle Books, £29) Pastry chef Elizabeth and baker Chad run Tartine Bakery, a cult San Francisco institution with spin-offs in LA and Seoul. The married couple have also written quite a few Tartine cookbooks, with this latest one a new, updated version of their first from 2006. It’s built half of all-new recipes and half of updated old favourites, many now offered in naturally sweetened or gluten-free variations or using on-trend ingredients like heritage grains and matcha. One newbie for this edition is the Tartine Morning Bun – a well-caramelised orange-cinnamon affair that’s apparently the most requested recipe in the bakery’s history – but there are plenty of great options for baking beginners too, like peanut butter honey cookies and banana muffins. Often the recipes are less sweet than you might expect, using cocoa, lemon, sour cream or cinnamon more than sugar. This is inspirational, high-end baking but with an accessible face, beautifully presented and with endless unexpected twists. MATT BIELBY


Book of t he Mont h

Sample recipe

ZAIKA

Romy Gill (Seven Dials, £20)

JESSICA CARTER

P H OTO GRA P H Y © SIM O N B A JA DA

This Bristol-based chef has been slowly growing her following since opening her restaurant, Romy’s Kitchen, in 2013. Her subsequent food writing, London pop-ups and TV appearances have made her name a nationally known one. Now, having closed her popular venue in the Bristol ’burbs, it seems she’s got plenty to keep her busy – not least her cookbooks, of which there will surely be more after the release of this debut number. The recipes here are inspired by her Indian roots and are all vegan (meat was a foodstuff saved for special occasions when she was growing up on the Subcontinent) and display individual takes on regional food. There are simple, quick, light dishes – think spicy fresh peas – as well as more involved creations like khichdi, and even more complicated ‘labours of love’ (I can’t wait to get the baby aubergines with dill and coconut on the go). Snacks, breads, puds and condiments complete the collection of approachable, novel and enticing Indian recipes from this ambitious, talented chef.

POSTO BORAS (POPPY SEED CAKES) Posto boras is a white poppy seed dish that is cooked in Bengali households. Also known as poppy seed cakes, these are small round bites that are mouth-wateringly delicious. You can serve these as a side dish with a main meal, but I love them as snacks. MAKES 8-10 100g white poppy seeds 4 green chillies, seeds in, chopped 1 small onion, chopped 1 tsp grated fresh root ginger 1 tsp salt 1 tsp cumin seeds mustard or rapeseed oil, for shallow-frying

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1 Soak the poppy seeds in cold water for 30 minutes. 2 Drain the poppy seeds, tip them into a blender and whizz to a paste. Add the paste to a bowl with the rest of the ingredients, except the oil. 3 Heat the oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. While the oil is heating, make 8-10 golf ball-sized balls from the poppy seed mixture and then flatten them. 4 Once the oil is hot, lower the temperature. Cook the boras, in batches, until golden and crispy on all sides. Remove the boras with a slotted spoon and transfer to a plate lined with kitchen paper to drain the excess oil. 5 I serve them hot with sliced shallots and mint and coriander chutney.


Fancy a taste of

Mexico? Look no further than

Dalia

Cocina! 35 High Street, Keynsham, Bristol BS31 1DP Opening hours: Mon - Wed: 9 - 5pm Thu - Sat: 9 - 10:30pm  Sun: Opening soon! Tel: 0117 914 6561  f daliacocinakeynsham


TOP RECIPES FROM OUR FAVOURITE LOCAL FOODIES

CHEF!

HIGHLIGHTS

22 SQUASH SPICE Squash meets cinnamon at Hartley Farm

25 REQUIEM FOR A BREAM

An amazing fish in an amazing dish

26 THE BROWNED BUNNY

Captain Haddock: Jenny Chandler celebrates this winning whitefish over on p30

Deep-fried in flour, rabbit’s rarely been more delicious 21

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C H E F !

Now that’s an enviable veggie selection!

WINTER SQUASH CASSEROLE WITH FETA AND HERB CRUMBLE SERVES 4-6 olive oil bunch spring onions, finely chopped 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped 1 tbsp ground cumin 1 tbsp ground cinnamon ½ tbsp nutmeg, grated ½ tbsp chilli flakes 1 large squash (or 2 small) 400g chopped tomatoes 500g spinach 400g tinned chickpeas 1 tbsp parsley, chopped For the topping: 200g plain flour 100g salted butter 200g feta 1 tbsp dried sage (or oregano)

SQUASH DARN IT!

1 Sweat the chopped spring onions, garlic and the dry spices in a little olive oil for 2-3 minutes. 2 Add in the squash, coat with the spices and cook for a minute or 2 before adding the chopped tomatoes, then simmer for 30-40 minutes until the squash is tender. Stir in the spinach, chickpeas and parsley. 3 Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/gas mark 4. 4 For the crumble topping, combine all the ingredients and rub with your fingers until you get a crumble consistency, just like breadcrumbs. 5 Pour the squash casserole into a baking dish and evenly spread the crumble mix over the top. Bake for 25-30 minutes until nice and golden all over.

Gary Say is making the most of the autumnal harvest with this healthy and versatile squash recipe...

Gary is head chef at Hartley Farm Shop and Kitchen in Winsley, over near Bradford-on-Avon. The menu here is created in accordance with what produce is available at the on-site shop and what’s being harvested on the farm. All the meat the kitchen uses comes from Hartley’s in-house butcher, while vegetables and salads are grown on the farm itself by Kate Collyns and sourdough is freshly baked by Nathan and Angie from local business, The Oven. This is a great autumn recipe: hearty and filling, and also packed full of the good stuff. “You can use whatever squash you fancy here,” Gary says. “There is so much variety at the moment to choose from.”

Hartley Farm, Winsley, Bradford-on-Avon, BA15 2JB; hartley-farm.co.uk

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The cheesy topping’s good, sure, but the hearty middle’s even better

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LE

P AM

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MA

T RIS

CH

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£24.50 FOR THREE COURSES £19.50 FOR TWO COURSES PRE-BOOKED CRACKERS INCLUDED!

STARTERS

Mushroom, walnut & chestnut soup with crusty bread (v,df) Pork, chorizo & pink peppercorn terrine with piccalilli & sourdough toast Roasted beetroot, goats cheese & walnut salad (v,gf)

MAIN COURSES Roast beef, caramelised shallots, Yorkshire pudding & gravy Sweet potato, mushroom & spinach wellington with gravy (v,df) Sea bass fillet on Provençal lentils with a creamy chive dressing (gf) Most mains served with roast potatoes & seasonal vegetables

PUDDINGS Book your Christmas meal now at

The Catherine Wheel Marshfield, Bath SN14 8LR 01225 892220 roo@thecatherinewheel.co.uk www.thecatherinewheel.co.uk

Traditional Christmas pudding with brandy sauce Chocolate torte served with Marshfield vanilla ice cream Selection of Marshfield ice creams (gf) and sorbets (df) Cheese with chutney & savoury biscuits £6.50

Available from Friday 29th November to Moday 30th December (excl 25 & 26 Dec) v = vegetarian / gf = prepared using no gluten containing ingredients / df = dairy free. Other allergy options available – please ask and we will try to accommodate any requests


C H E F !

GILTHEAD BREAM WITH RED ONION AND BACON HASH, CURLY KALE, BLISTERED TOMATO AND MORNAY SAUCE SERVES 4 900g new potatoes 4 streaky bacon rashers 25g butter 4 gilthead bream fillets olive oil 12 cherry tomatoes 80g curly kale 1 red onion, finely sliced For the Mornay sauce: 300ml double cream 80-100g parmesan, grated handful parsley leaves, chopped

The ‘gilthead’ is sadly not pictured

BREAM BIG

This impressive-looking seafood dish is happily doable at home – Danny Ross will show you how

The OldMark House at explores sournessWiltshire in his Home, Burton, new book SN14 7LT; 01454 218227; ohhpubs.co.uk

Danny is the head chef at The Old House at Home – a cosy, traditional country pub in Wiltshire. These kinds of places – especially at this time of year – conjure up images of open fires, hefty wines and robust comfort food. It’s not all about the carb and beef, though – fish can also be a winner at this time of year. “Gilthead bream is a fish which is usually farmed, but is at its best during November and December,” Danny says. “This recipe is simple, quick and easy and will impress any dinnerSweet, guest.sticky If you can’t and sourget – hold of these also ribs are a bitvery of uswell with this specific fish, the recipe works any staple white fish, like cod or haddock.”

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1 First, bring a large pot of salted water to the boil and add the potatoes, chopping any large ones in half. Cook until soft, then drain and leave to cool. 2 Meanwhile, fry or grill the bacon until crisp. 3 Place a frying pan over a medium heat and the butter. Once melted, crush up the cooked new potatoes in your hands and fry gently in the pan. Don’t move the potato around too much, as it needs to form crispy bits. 4 Preheat the grill to high. 5 Cut 2 or 3 slits in the skin of each fillet of bream. Place the fillets skin side up on an oven tray lined with parchment paper. Coat the skin with a little oil and season with salt and pepper (you can add a knob of butter on top too if you like). Put the tomatoes on the tray and place under the grill. Cook for about 6 minutes. 6 Bring the double cream to a gentle simmer on the hob, then add a little pepper along with the grated parmesan and chopped parsley. Stir constantly until the parmesan has melted and the sauce has thickened, then set aside. 7 Blanch the curly kale in boiling water for about 1 minute, then drain well. 8 Slice up the streaky bacon and add to the hot potato, along with the red onion. The heat of the potato will heat the bacon and soften the onion. 9 Push the potato hash mix into a ring mould to create a disc shape on each plate. Pour the Mornay sauce all over the stack, letting it run down the sides, then top with the kale. Finish with the bream fillet, skin side up, and add three blistered cherry tomatoes around the plate. 10 To garnish, I use pea shoots and red amareth.


C H E F !

FESTIVAL FRIED RABBIT SERVES 4 2 rabbits, butchered as above 3 eggs, beaten rapeseed oil, for deep frying

EMLI BENDIXEN

FRY ANOTHER DAY

The Pig’s released a book, and we snatched this corker of a recipe by James Golding from its pages, almost before the ink was dry... Known for its picturesque locations and tastefully styled interiors, hotel and restaurant group The Pig – which has a cracking venue at Pensford, just outside Bath – has branched out into cookbook writing. From the hot-off-the-press tome comes this recipe. It uses meat that’s wild and abundant, and was created by The Pig’s chef director, James Golding. This unusual but brilliant dish started life as a way of encouraging more people to eat rabbit, James writes. Our grandparents would have been used to it, but the appeal seems to have been lost now. We’ve got lots of good game around – top-quality lean meat such as rabbit, pigeon, partridge and pheasant – that we’re not using, which is crazy. So we came up with this recipe, and it’s proved really popular. Remember to ask your butcher to joint the rabbits into shoulders, loins, legs and thighs, removing the bones from the thighs.

Recipe taken from The Pig: Tales and Recipes From the Kitchen Garden and Beyond (Octopus Publishing, £30) by Robin Hutson, Gill Morgan, Paul Croughton and The Pig team; photos by Emli Bendixen

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For the brine: 4 ltrs water 600g salt 520g sugar 4 sprigs rosemary 2 garlic bulbs, cut in half 20g black peppercorns For the spicy flour mix: 500g flour 70g celery salt 70g paprika pinch cayenne pepper 1 First, put all the brine ingredients in a pan, bring to a simmer, then allow to cool. 2 Place the rabbit in the brine for 20 minutes and, while it’s soaking, make the spicy flour mix by sifting all the dry ingredients into a bowl. 3 Remove the rabbit from the brine, rinse and pat dry with a clean tea towel or kitchen paper. 4 Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/gas mark 6. 5 Fill a deep-fat fryer with oil, or half-fill a large saucepan and heat to 190C, or until a cube of bread browns in 30 seconds. Coat the rabbit by dipping the pieces in the beaten egg then the flour, and then repeat the process so that they’re evenly coated. Fry in the hot oil for 3 minutes until golden. 6 Transfer to the oven and cook for 10 minutes, then allow to rest for 5 minutes. This recipe can be made in advance, in which case recoat the rabbit and fry for a further 2 minutes to crisp up. TIP: The taste of rabbit is somewhere between chicken and pheasant. If your children like fried chicken but they’re a bit unsure about rabbit, this is a great way to get them to try something a bit different. Kids love it!


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C H E F !

True fact: Tim Maddams also wrote the River Cottage Game Handbook

Vale House Kitchen is a country skills and cookery school, set in the pretty village of Timsbury. These guys teach everything from breadmaking to butchering, shooting to smoking, with expert tutors taking different classes. Tim is one such tutor, and really knows his game. This is a recipe he often teaches on his game courses at Vale House. It’s super-quick, hassle-free and packed full of flavour. Get yourself some lovely fresh venison and give it a go – a piece of loin is ideal.

VENISON CARPACCIO Think venison always makes for a heavy dish? Think again…

CHEERS, M’DEER!

SERVES 2-3 small venison steak, trimmed 10ml sesame oil, plus extra for searing 20ml rapeseed oil 30ml soy sauce 1cm fresh ginger 1 garlic clove, peeled 1 lime, juice only handful coriander leaves, chopped 1 spring onion, finely chopped 1 tsp sesame seeds, toasted 1 lemongrass stalk, very finely chopped (optional)

Vale House Kitchen’s next venison course is scheduled for 22 November. Visit the website for more information and to book; valehousekitchen.co.uk

1 Season the venison with salt and pepper and rub with a little sesame oil. Heat a pan until very hot, and sear the venison, just to colour the outside (about 30 seconds). Thinly slice the meat and arrange on a plate. 2 For the dressing, blend together the sesame oil, rapeseed oil, soy, ginger and garlic. Add lime juice to taste. (If you don’t have a blender, you can just chop everything very finely). 3 Spoon the dressing over the meat and then garnish with the coriander and spring onion. Finish with the toasted seeds, lemongrass if you have it, and a little fresh lime juice.

With game season upon us, try this simple but elegant venison dish by Tim Maddams at your next dinner party...

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C H E F !

Jenny was once the ‘Special Ambassador for Pulses’. Who knew?

SMOKED HADDOCK, SPINACH AND CURRIED LENTILS SERVES 4 600g smoked haddock fillet, skinned and boned, cut into 4 pieces 2 lemons 100g unsalted butter 1 onion, diced 1 carrot, diced 2 garlic cloves, crushed 2cm ginger, finely diced 2 lemongrass stalks, very finely diced 1-2 tbsp medium curry powder 100ml double cream 250g small lentils such as pardina, Puy or Castelluccio, well rinsed and cooked 400g fresh spinach, washed 2 tbsp olive oil 2 tbsp parsley or coriander, roughly chopped

CURRY ON

Jenny Chandler sure has her finger on the pulse when it comes to new ways to use legumes... Something of a pulse guru, Jenny Chandler has dedicated two of her books to the frugal, nutritious and, frankly, under-loved ingredient. She was even asked to be the European Special Ambassador for Pulses, for the year of the pulse (2016, in case you don’t remember). Pules, legumes and beans aren’t just great because they’re cheap (hurrah!) and good for us (yay!); they’re also willing vehicles of flavour and super versatile. As demonstrated in this here kedgeree-esque recipe. Despite all that, though, they’ve not exactly been enjoying popularity with UK cooks over the last couple of decades, having fallen rather out of favour. Things are starting to look up now for these humble staples, though. “We’re celebrating a bit of a national pulse renaissance, with heritage pea varieties and fava beans (that were, until recently, destined for export or animal feed) on the shelves once more,” Jenny says. “The enterprising company Hodmedods works with British farmers cultivating an ever-growing range of pulses and grains, including their first commercial crop of lentils in 2017.”

Recipe from Super Pulses by Jenny Chandler (Pavilion Books); photography by Clare Winfield

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1 Put the fish in a dish and squeeze over the juice from one of the lemons, cover, and place in the refrigerator. 2 Heat 50g butter in a saucepan and cook the onion and carrot until the onion is soft. Add the garlic, ginger and lemongrass. Stir for a minute or 2, taking care not to burn the garlic, before adding the curry powder. Stir again and then tip in the cream. Pour the curry cream over the cooked lentils, give them a stir, taste, and season well with salt and pepper. 3 Put the spinach in another pan (there will probably be enough moisture from washing the leaves), cover with a well-fitting lid and cook over a medium heat until the spinach has collapsed. Drain, squeeze well (I love to drink the juice) and season. Too much washing up? Just add the raw spinach to the hot lentils and allow to wilt. A little wetter, not quite as pretty, but hey ho. 4 Heat the oil and the remaining butter in a large frying pan and pan-fry the haddock until cooked through and beginning to flake – a matter of minutes on each side, depending on the thickness of the fish. 5 Place a mound of lentils on each plate, then some spinach and crown with the fish. Sprinkle with parsley or coriander and serve with the remaining lemon, cut into wedges. I like to top with a poached egg.


Could this serve as a hearty breakfast? We’re rather tempted…

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Y TR EN EE FR

Festive food & drink festival with added sparkle! Taunton: 30.11.19 Burnham-on-Sea: 07.12.19 Portishead:14.12.19 Weston-super-Mare: 15.12.19 (Indoors)

www.eatfestivals.org


( advertising feature )

Refining Luxury… Lucknam Park is country house living at its very best in Wiltshire.

L

ocated just 6 miles from the historic city of Bath, Lucknam Park is one of England’s most iconic country house hotels. The hotel is a Palladian mansion dating from 1720 and offers a plethora of facilities, for those seeking both relaxation and indulgence. Within the 500-acre estate lies two excellent restaurants, an awardwinning spa, cookery school and a beautiful equestrian centre with 35 horses. Lucknam Park’s fine dining option, Restaurant Hywel Jones, has retained its Michelin star for the 15th consecutive year and promises an unforgettable dining experience. Enjoy pre-dinner cocktails in the elegant Library or Drawing room before choosing from the a la carte menu or tasting menus. Within the hotel there are 42 individually styled rooms and suites filled with character. There are also two stylish country cottages set within the estate. Squire’s Cottage is the latest addition to Lucknam Park with a contemporary design, spacious living areas, four luxury bedrooms with en-suites and its own private garden which overlooks the parkland; a brilliant choice for families or groups. In 2020, Lucknam Park plans to open a further two cottages.

ESPA at Lucknam Park, awarded Best Spa in the South West at the 2018 Good Spa Guide Awards, is an idyllic country spa destination. There’s a superb choice of soothing spa days for those in need of some five star pampering; you can even combine your relaxation with an estate horse ride with their ‘Saddle & Spa Day’. Highly trained therapists perform a range of personalised spa treatments in the eight therapy rooms and a sensory test with the ESPA oils guides your therapist to your individual requirements. The Brasserie, which adjoins the spa, offers a seasonal a la carte menu and is the perfect place to enjoy a relaxed lunch or dinner. A brand new studio has been built in the arboretum for yoga, pilates and mindfulness classes.

Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa, Colerne, Chippenham, Wiltshire, SN14 8AZ 01225 742 777; www.lucknampark.co.uk reservations@lucknampark.co.uk

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LOO

I DRINK, THEREFORE I AM

WHAT SUP? FINE AND BRANDY

Winter is a-comin’, and local bartender Chris Stutt has just the drink to celebrate the new season...

I ouK!! newt’s r dedicsection, a all t ted to supphaings ble

Chris worked as a chef for a decade before becoming a bartender, eventually opening his own steampunk-infused cocktail bar in Bristol. The Clockwork Rose just celebrated its second birthday and has marked the occasion by releasing a brand new menu. The team here make countless infusions to star in their many concoctions, the recipes for which are closely guarded. We, however, managed to prise the secrets of the pumpkin spiced brandy from Chris’ hands, so we can make the wonderfully seasonal Jack O’Lantern – a take on the classic Brandy Alexander – at home. The brandy is infused with a seasonal tea from Bristol tea shop Bird and Blend, and the recipe makes enough for around 14 servings – the perfect excuse to get your mates round for an autumnal soirée. For the pumpkin spiced brandy: 350ml Martell VS Cognac 50g caster sugar 20g Bird and Blend Tea Co Spiced Pumpkin Pie tea For one serving of Jack O’Lantern: 25ml pumpkin spiced brandy 25ml Creme de Cacao Blanc 25ml soya milk 15ml aqua faba ice nutmeg, grated, to garnish

Mmm, a delicious glass of milk! (Hang on, it doesn’t taste quite like milk…)

1 To make the pumpkin spiced brandy, add the cognac and sugar to a 1 ltr jar and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Add the tea, seal the jar and leave to infuse for 2 hours. Once infused, strain the cognac to remove the tea leaves and bottle the liquid. 2 To make the cocktail, thoroughly shake all of the liquids in a shaker with ice, then strain into a brandy glass and garnish with nutmeg.

theclockworkrose.com

+ BEER + COFFEE + WINES + SPIRITS + MORE 35 35

CRUMBSMAG.COM CRUMBSMAG.COM


Introducing our new menu...

A Curious Collection of Improbable Adventures

16 St. Stephens Street, Bristol BS1 1JR. 01179276869 thecaptain@theclockworkrose.com


W H A T

S U P ?

THE DRIP FEED NEWS + BREWS + BARS + TRENDS

RULE OF RUM

HOT SHOTS

KASK FORCE

The Bristol and Bath Rum Distillery has launched in the former Jamie’s Italian site on Bristol’s Park Street. The huge four-storey venue comprises three bars where rum aficionados are able to sup on 150 varieties of their favourite spirit from across the globe; a distillery and barrel conditioning room, home of production for globally-marketed rums; and a rum school, where booze geeks can go for tasting and blending workshops. Behind the new venture is family-run distillery Halewood Wines and Spirits (famous for Deadman’s Fingers spiced rum). We’ve taken their cocktail list for a test run and supped on the intriguing hemp rum with cola herbal mixer and grapefruit. bristolandbathrumdistillery.com

The flat white is the skinny jeans of the coffee world, right? When it came into the public domain we wondered what we’d ever done without it, and there is still no sign of it dipping out of favour. South West producer Jimmy’s Iced Coffee, it seems, is as much of an advocate for the flat white as the rest of us, having just launched its own version of the coffee shop mainstay. The Extra Shot Iced Flat White – with a higher coffee-to-milk ratio than Jimmy’s other drinks – is made with ethically sourced Arabica beans, semi-skimmed milk and a dash of unrefined demerara. A caffeine kick packaged into a cool and refreshing sip in a happily recyclable vessel. Find it at Whiterow Farm Shop and Waitrose. jimmysicedcoffee.com

Low-intervention, organic and biodynamic wine is famously hangoverproof. Right? Okay, that’s not an actual fact, but something that is definitely true is that these kinds of vinos are being served at a new Bedminster wine bar and shop, Kask. There’s a rotating range of red, white, rosé and orange wines on tap to drink by the glass or fill up vessels with to take home, alongside a 100-strong collection of bottles. There is also a small range of local beers and a guest gin and tonic on the go at any one time, as well as cheese and charcuterie to nibble on. Kask is housed in a 150-year-old former pub on Bedminster’s North Street, formerly known as The Hare and Leveret. kaskwine.co.uk

MY L OC A L

Bristol food and drink guru Shonette Laffy finds it almost impossible to leave her favourite pub after just one drink… My local is The Barley Mow in St Phillips. (Not to be confused with the one in Bedminster; me and my mate have ended up in different pubs before!) This vibe here in three words is chilled, chatty, session-tastic. I’m drinking one of the latest Bristol Beer Factory or Arbor brews (the tap list here is always

brilliant), or the house red, which is very moreish. And to nibble I’ll have a Scotch egg, or one of their burgers if it’s Burger Night. You’ll find me sitting in the corner of the beer garden in summer, or the corner table which is equidistant from the toilets, bar and board games. Tactical! The crowd is friendly. There’s a nice mix of locals, office workers and occasionally people starting or finishing the East Bristol Brewery Trail. My best celeb sightings here are all the local brewers – I get pathetically star struck when I

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meet them. (Sorry, Michael Wiper!) If I was going to steal anything from the pub, it’d be the huge jar of roasted cashews. And I can’t not mention the fact that they have eight cask lines and 10 keg lines – amazing for such a dinky bar! Basically, you should try my local because it’s tucked away enough to never get too busy or rowdy, always has a great selection of beers on, and does winning food to boot. One drink here has turned into an evening-long session too many times for me to count. bristolbeerfactory.co.uk


THE WINE GUY

FRESH PRINCE

Andy Clarke looks to a freshly reinvented restaurant, justreleased wine and a new TV series to come up with this month’s up-to-the-minute food and drink match...

E

ver wondered what I do in my day job that goes a little way towards making me qualified to chat about food and drink here in Crumbs? I’m a food, drink and travel TV producer. This allows me to meet and work with incredible teams of passionate foodies and drink-loving people, and fill myself up along the way. And now and then I get to put Bristol in the spotlight… Last year I was approached by The British Sign Language Broadcasting Trust to devise a series for talented pro chef Scott Garthwaite, AKA Punk Chef. The man with the bright pink Mohican has been deaf since he was a toddler and happens to make luscious culinary creations for a living. Once Scott and I met, Punk Chef on the Road was born and I was keen to bring him to Bristol to film an episode and feature the city’s world-class vegan scene. In fact, the entire episode is vegan and celebrates some of the best Bristolian plant-based food pioneers. With Bristol having recently been named by one study as the vegan capital of the world ( judged on internet searches for vegan food), it’s sure got a wealth of offerings made purely from plants. This month, I am particularly keen to shout about the newest veganfriendly restaurant in town. Caper and Cure was recently unveiled on the busiest corner of Stokes Croft and is the brainchild of Giles Corum and Craig and Susie Summers. Having previously worked together at Wallfish Bistro in Clifton, Giles and Craig left the village and made the leap down the hill to the Croft in 2017 by taking over The Arts House Café. Their continental coffee house and event space underwent a bit of a makeover last month – new look, new name, fresh menu – and has blossomed into a restaurant with an intimate and welcoming atmosphere, serving locally sourced food and offering

Craig (left) and Giles of Caper and Cure, the new name for The Arts House Café

Pumpkin and coconut, you say? It’s actually a match made in heaven

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W H A T

a dedicated vegan menu. One of my favourite dishes there is Craig’s slow-roast pumpkin with coconut yoghurt, gremolata, lentils and girolles. It’s a massive nod to autumn and sums up the seasonal way that he likes to cook. I can’t wait to try my hand at the recipe at home – but what shall I drink with it? This rustic hug of a dish needs to be matched with vegan wine, of course, so one that hasn’t been ‘finished’ with animal products, often used to remove organic impurities. One great choice for this dish is the latest offering from Ingrid Bates and her team at Somerset-based Dunleavy Vineyards. It’s a sparkling red wine made from the Rondo grape. Red fizz might not be the first thing that springs to mind when dreaming up a match for this delightful plate, but it’s a striking autumnal sip and the gentle bubbles act like a crunch over the hearty lentils. Flavour-wise, the ruby-red wine is full of blackberries which complement the sweet roasted pumpkin, and it has a slightly savoury smokiness due to its 10-month ageing process, which is great with the girolles. The best fizzy red I’ve tasted in a long time. But if bubbles aren’t your thing, pop up Gloucester Road to Grape and Grind to have a squiz at their wine selection. Amongst the fine bottles you’ll find an organic Sicilian corker, which will go a treat with Craig’s creation. Fabrizio Vella is a winemaker working with indigenous Sicilian grape varieties such as Catarratto. This natural wine has a slightly cloudy, golden look, not unlike a still cider. It has a nutty nose, which complements the lentils and girolles. It’s also hoppy on the palate with great texture and a saline finish, which is perfect with the pumpkin and gremolata. It’s not fruit-driven but has an intriguing streak of acidity which is like a lemon drop on top of that fresh coconut yoghurt. So, as the nights draw in, and you’re looking to eat and drink vegan, there really is no better place to be plant-based than Bristol, I reckon.

S U P ?

SLOW-ROAST PUMPKIN WITH COCONUT YOGHURT, GREMOLATA, LENTILS AND GIROLLES BY C R A I G S U M M E R S

D R I N K U P! Fabrizio Vella Catarratto 2017, £14.99 from Grape and Grind; grapeandgrind.co.uk Dunleavy Brut Nature Sparkling Red Wine 2017, £28 (approx) from Grape and Grind or direct from the vineyard; dunleavyvineyards.co.uk

Punk Chef on the Road: Bristol airs on Monday 4 November at 8am on Film4, or 7pm on Together, then again at 10pm. Also, catch it on the BSL Zone; bslzone.co.uk/watch; one4thetable.com

Andy’s front and centre, but can you tell who’s the Punk Chef?

SERVES 4 For the pumpkin: ½ pumpkin 20g fine sea salt 100ml vegetable or rapeseed oil 2 garlic cloves, left whole with skin on 1 sprig rosemary 4 sprigs thyme 5 sage leaves 200g puy lentils 1 ltr vegetable stock 100g coconut yoghurt 1 lemon, zest only 250g girolles For the gremolata: 1 lemon 2 garlic cloves 50ml extra virgin olive oil 1 bunch parsley, leaves picked and chopped 1 Prepare the pumpkin by washing it, cutting into equal-sized wedges and scooping out the seeds. Lay the wedges out on an oven tray and sprinkle generously with salt. Leave for 3 hours to remove the water. 2 Preheat the oven to 150C/300F/gas mark 2. 3 Coat the pumpkin wedges in the vegetable oil and add the garlic, rosemary, thyme and sage. Cook for 90 minutes. When ready, remove and leave to cool in the tray. 4 While the pumpkin is in the oven, cook the puy lentils in the stock with a pinch of salt for 20-25 minutes, until tender. 5 Meanwhile, make the gremolata. Finely grate the lemon peel and garlic into a bowl with the olive oil. Add the finely chopped parsley leaves and stir together. 6 Put the coconut yoghurt into a bowl. Add the lemon zest and a pinch of salt and set aside. 7 Heat a pan with a glug of rapeseed oil and sautée the girolles for 3-5 minutes. Turn off the heat and add the gremolata to the pan. 8 Taste the lentils, and add seasoning if needed. Arrange them onto the plates and top with the pumpkin and girolles. Finish with a few dollops of yoghurt. We like to garnish with nasturtium flowers and leaves for a nice peppery taste.

caperandcure.co.uk

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Tel: 07854239926 info@cliftonwineschool.com

Join us for a Lunch or Dinner treat this coming Festive season All OHH Pubs will be serving a mouth watering 2 or 3 course Festive Menu, available from Friday 22nd November until Tuesday 24th December. Whether you plan for a business outing, family or friends gathering, contact your preferred OHH Pub for more detail or visit www.ohhpubs.co.uk Make the experience that extra special and enquire about our 5 Star rated letting bedrooms

The Old House at Home

Burton, Near Castle Combe, Wiltshire, SN14 7LT 01454 218227 | theoldhouseathome@ohhcompany.co.uk

The Bear & Swan

13 South Parade, Chew Magna, Somerset, BS40 8PR 01275 331100 | thebearandswan@ohhcompany.co.uk

The Rising Sun

91 West Town Road, Backwell, North Somerset, BS48 3BH 01275 462215 | therisingsun@ohhcompany.co.uk

The Northey Arms

Bath Road, Box, Wiltshire, SN13 8AE 01225 742333 | thenorthey@ohhcompany.co.uk

www.ohhpubs.co.uk

A very warm welcome to Clifton Wine School! We are a local wine school hosting events in Bristol and Bath. Choose from our Cheese and Wine Matching night, a Fine Wine tasting, Wines of the World evening courses, Gin tasting, and so much more. We also do unforgettable hen parties and corporate events. We don’t sell wine, we sell confidence in wine knowledge from a DipWSET qualified teacher.

You can purchase any course or tasting as a Wine School Gift Voucher starting from ÂŁ25 the perfect present for any wine lovers!

Proud Crumbs Award Finalist 2019! + Crumbs Award Winner 2018!

www.cliftonwineschool.com


CHOOSE YOUR WEAPONS

KITCHEN

ARMOURY You know those oversized rain showerhead things you get in posh hotel rooms? Nothing says luxury like one of those! Nothing says ‘disappointing’, you mean. They might look good, but the maths is simple: because they’re so much bigger than the average showerhead, but still pump out the same amount of water, they’re always a little weedy. Washing under one of those is like standing outside in a light shower, rather than plunging directly beneath a raging waterfall – which is what I want from a shower. I want to feel that pressure! Steady on. But it’s true. Well, okay. Let me tell you something else I really like: a perfect cup of coffee. The sort you might get somewhere like, I dunno, a posh hotel perhaps… A-ha! Now that’s something I can help you with. Check out the beast we have here, for instance: the 12 Cup Drip Coffee Maker from KitchenAid. It, too, has a special showerhead – but a much more effective one. Called the ‘Spiral Showerhead’, it’s a unique 29-hole affair that pours neither too fast or too slow, and – because of how big it is, and all those holes – doesn’t do so all on one spot. That’s crucial, apparently. Eh? What are you on about? The point is, it saturates the coffee beans evenly. Plus, it’s got 24-hour programmability, a brew strength selector and a ‘pour and pause’ option, meaning the coffee gets made precisely to your preference. A unique spout design even prevents drips, while dosage guidelines on the filter help ensure the correct water-to-bean ratio, too.

The KitchenAid Drip Coffee Maker with Spiral Showerhead costs £119 and is available now from Lakeland, John Lewis et al; kitchenaid.co.uk

A HARD RAIN’S A-GONNA FALL

And it’s going to land all over your coffee beans, says Matt Bielby. Happily, that’s a good thing…

THIS MONTH

And I suppose it also helps prevent my coffee going cold? Actually, it does. The optional – read, ‘extra cost’ – Programmable Warming Plate keeps each cup at the perfect temperature for up to two hours. Sounds rather good, to be honest. And at £119, it might just be within your Christmas shopping budget too. (But if £2 upwards is more your range, you should see what’s over the page…)

GIFTS + MORE GIFTS + YET MORE GIFTS 43 CRUMBSMAG.COM


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(LESS THAN A TENNER!) 1. FIVE A DAY Frome-based chocolatier Choc on Choc comes up with some cracking festive designs each year – we’re into these chocolate carrots, but reckon Rudolf has his eye on ’em, too... Raindeer with Carrots, £9.99, buy online; choconchoc.co.uk 2. PIECE ON EARTH  There are 100 parts to this tricky puzzle – and did we mention they’re double-sided?

That should keep everyone quiet while you crack on with lunch (or that bottle of Baileys). Brussels Sprouts Jigsaw, £3.99, from Lakeland in Bath and Bristol; lakeland.co.uk 3. CHRISTMAS TINNER A double measure of M&S’ festive dry gin – flavoured with ginger, cinnamon and cardamom – is mixed with tonic and packaged in a festive tin for this ace stocking filler. Christmas Gin and Tonic, £2, from Marks and Spencer; ROM marksandspencer.com FREE-F

GIFT!

4. TRUFFLE SHUFFLE With all the luxury feels and zero dairy, gluten or soya, the 16 vegan and organic truffles in this box come in five flavours, including decadent hazelnut crunch and almond salted

files

Santa’s not the only one making a list and checking it twice – we’ve been putting serious thought into our Xmas gift compellation for 2019 (it’s ambitious, sure, but we have been very good...). Get ready for some delicious festive gifting inspo... caramel – both Great Taste Awards winners. Booja Booja Award Winning Selection, £9.99, from Holland and Barrett; boojabooja.com

5. PETS WIN PRIZES Because why should the hound miss out on the foodie presents this Christmas, we ask you? Ham and Turkey Dog Toys, £8, from Marks and Spencer in Bath and Bristol; marksandspencer.com 6. CUT THE MUSTARD  This locally made condiment will be a dream with the Boxing Day cold spread – plenty of punch and crunch in here – and it comes in a lovely reusable jar to boot. Tracklements Particularly British Piccalilli Le Parfait, £5.50; tracklements.co.uk

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7. DON’T MUG YOURSELF Part of the new collection for 2020, this ceramic mug harks back to the ’70s and has buckets of style. Hot bevs have never looked so cool. HK Living Ceramic Tea Mug, £11.50, from Mon Pote in Bristol; monpote.co.uk 8. SPROUT OF YER BUSINESS   On-point crockery for that sprout lover (or hater), designed by Emma Bridgewater and made from English earthenware. Sprout Plate, £17.95, from Rossiters of Bath and Cadeaux and Co in Wells; emmabridgewater.co.uk 9. TAKE IT SLOE  This 22% ABV limited edition sloe vodka was made by hand with Welsh berries and British

spirit back in 2014, meaning it’s had plenty of time to develop some serious flavour. Espensen Spirit True Romance, £16 (20cl), from Bristol Spirit; espensenspirit.com 10. BAKE THAT  Know a little ’un who’s intent on achieving that perfect rise and has waged war against soggy bottoms? They knead this baking set in their stocking on Xmas morn. Personalised Kids’ Baking set, £14, buy online from Upside Down Creations; upsidedowncreations.com   RIBE! 11. HALL OF GAME  SUBSC South West charcuterie maker Good Game has just launched a new subscription club, which will see top-drawer artisan charcuterie delivered monthly to your giftee’s door each month. Hello, friend points. Good Game

Charcuterie Subscription Box, from £13, buy online; good-game.co.uk 12. POP RIGHT NOW Joe and Seph’s gourmet popcorn comes in all kinds of flavours – we’d suggest picking the festive mince pie variety to fill one of these smart reusable jars with. Joe and Seph’s Popcorn Kilner Jar, £16.99, buy online; joeandsephs.co.uk 13. KEEP ROLLIN’  This slick slicer makes short work of portioning up pizzas – great for lovers of this Italian staple. Bagsie the biggest slice. Microplane Pizza Cutter in black, £14.35, buy online from Harts of Stur; hartsofstur.com 14. DARLING CLEMENTINE  You get two gifts in one, here: a snow globe full of shimmering golden

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flakes, and a gin liqueur to guzzle (responsibly, obvs). M&S Clementine Gin Liqueur Snowglobe, £15, from Marks and Spencer; marksandspencer.com 15. FAT CHANCE Not just for Christmas, this selection of beef dripping, Saddleback lard, organic grassfed ghee and Pipers Farm’s own Butchers Butter will keep home cooks happy for weeks. Pipers Farm Pure Fat Box, £17, buy online; pipersfarm.com 16. COPPA FEEL Coffee nerds with a thing for gorgeous design will be all over this coffee maker, whose design minimises contact with the filter paper for the best possible results. Barista and Co Coral Pour Over Coffee Maker, £16.99, buy online; baristaandco.com


CHRISTMAS AND NEW YEAR AT THE GRAPES This year The Grapes will be open for Christmas Day 12-4pm for lunch (booking in advance only) Christmas Day Lunch £85.00 per person for 6 courses New Years Eve £65.00 per person for 6 courses. CHRISTMAS PARTY NIGHTS are available to book now, see online for our menu £25.00 Two Courses / £32.00 Three Courses 14 Silver Street, Bradford On Avon, BA15 1JY Telephone: 01225 938088 Email: maylee@thebunchofgrapes.com

www.thebunchofgrapes.com

NEW

NEW MOON ON THE QUAY NOW OPEN

BREAKFAST (SATURDAY & SUNDAY ONLY) • LUNCH • DINNER BOOK YOUR TABLE NOW! ADDRESS: THE KIOSK 3 HANNOVER QUAY BS1 5JE | TEL: 0117 927 9689 BOOKING ENQUIRIES: HELLO@NEWMOONTAPAS.CO.UK


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T FOR GREA ONES! LITTE 17. DINNERSAURAS This cute dining set will prove a winner not only with kids but also Mother Earth, as it’s made from sustainable bamboo. Dinosaur Dinner Set, £20, from Graham and Green in Bath; grahamandgreen.co.uk 18. DRAM HOT  As if that favourite tipple isn’t fun enough, it’s now been made into a board game. The objective? Collecting whiskies from around the world, of course. The Whisky Game, £21.95, from Graham and Green in Bath; grahamandgreen.co.uk 19. SALT AND PUPPER   This ceramic salt and pepper shaker set is by Bristolian designer Hannah Turner and makes a top gift for anyone who loves their hound as much as good seasoning. Bark Life Salt and Pepper Shakers, £21.99, from Rossiters and online; hannahturner.co.uk

20. SMOKIN’ Know a barbecue fanatic? This hot-smoking gift box – including wood chips, smoker box, spicy rub and recipe booklet – will be a bit of them. Hot Smoked Kit, MADE £28.50, buy online; HAND ALLY! hotsmoked.co.uk OC

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21. TOAST THE SEASON These ace plates are handmade by ceramicist Isobel Higley in her local studio, and come in brown or white bread designs. Made to order, each is unique too. Ceramic Toast Plate, £23.99, buy online from Etsy; etsy.com 22. WHAT A STEEL  Ideal for winter soups, this handy vacuum-insulated, leakproof pot will keep its contents warm (or cold) until lunch. Black and Blum Stainless Steel Small Food Flask and Spoon 400ml, £24, from Lakeland; lakeland.co.uk

23. POT LUCK Decorated with a sweet handpainted watercolour design, this enamel coffee pot is gifting gold – especially for caffeine freaks. (There are matching cups, too.) Folklore Sunrise Hare Coffee Pot, £24.95, from The Pod Company in Clifton; thepodcompany.co.uk 24. MINT CONDITION  Mix up a winning recipe with this cocktail set, designed for creating the perfect Mojito. Kitchen Craft Four Piece Mojito Set, £25, from Harvey Nichols; harveynichols.com 25. PORT COMINGS  A heavenly food and drink match is celebrated in this wooden gift box containing Cropwell Bishop Creamery’s Waxed Blue Stilton (which won Supreme Champion at the British Cheese Awards) and Fonseca Terra Prima Port – and both are organic. Port

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and Stilton Christmas Box, £25, buy online from Abel and Cole; abelandcole.co.uk

UP TO £60

26. GOLD FASHIONED Is any cocktail shelf even complete without a golden pineapple tumbler? (Tip: turn the lid upside down and use as a stand for the base for maximum effect.) The Pineapple Co Pineapple Tumbler, £34.95, from Harvey Nichols; harveynichols.com 27. FONDUE YOU?  Surely one of the best things about winter is all that fondue potential? This ceramic fondue set has the makings of an ideal night in over Crimbo. Paxton and Whitfield Fondue set for two, £35, buy online; paxtonandwhitfield.co.uk


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28. GINGER SPICE DAY XMAS VITY! Coming in a keepsake tin with a personalised message, this ACTI build-it-yourself gingerbread house will prove a top festive activity for the whole family to join in with. Biscuteers DIY gingerbread house kit, £35, buy online; biscuiteers.com

29. THE SLICE IS RIGHT Get your cheese game on point this Noel with these stainless steel knives with hand-forged, brushed gold handles. Ena Cheese Knife Set, £36.96, from Nkuku; nkuku.com 30. GRACIOUS GINNER  Cinnamon, ginger and cardamom are all in attendance in this tastefully festive gin, distilled especially for the Yuletide. Pop off the stopper and smell those warming spices before pouring yourself a generous measure. Old Curiosity Christmas Gin, £35 (50cl), buy online; theoldcuriosity.co.uk

31. GIFT MAG A Crumbs gift subscription will be a four-weekly reminder to its recipient of what a great gift-giver you are. A year’s subscription includes 13 issues packed with local food news, recipes and reviews. Crumbs One Year Subscription, £39, buy online; crumbsmag.com 32. DOUBLE TROUBLE Know a pair of cider lovers? A Bristol Cider Shop hamper made for two is the way to go, with 10 ciders, two Somerset cider brandy miniatures, two tasting glasses and a cider guide. Bristol Cider Shop Tasting Gift Hamper for Two, £47.50, from Bristol Cider Shop; bristolcidershop.co.uk

G ETHIN E! M O S R 33. HIGH CAKES SHA Complete with a goat’s TO cheese star on top, this cheesecake – also featuring Camembert, Cheddar and Stilton – will go down a treat with the festive Champers. Christmas

Cheese Cake from Paxton and Whitfield, £50 (1.25kg), buy online or at the Bath shop; paxtonandwhitfield.co.uk 34. STAY GLASSY Ethical homeware trader Nkuku has got some gorgeous new ranges in this season, including these elegant etched wine glasses in green. Nkuku Mila Wine glasses in Dark Emerald (set of four), £39.99, buy online; nkuku.com 35. LIFE’S A PICNIC That person who has everything? Bet they don’t have this. The vintage-look hamper is made from natural willow and real leather and is filled with picnic essentials. Now all you need is to wait for the sun to make its return. St Michael Picnic Hamper for Two, £58, buy online; souschef.co.uk 36. SHAKE IT OFF  This bit of bar kit has a real no-messing look about it,

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thanks to the sleek shape and gunmetal finish. Only the coolest of drink mixers shake up concoctions in this bad boy. House Doctor Shaker, £42, from Fig 1 in Bristol; fig1.co.uk 37. PIPE UP This bespoke recipe book stand is handmade to order in Bristol from copper pipe, and will be a friend to any home cook, not to mention cool, industrial-look kitchens. Copper Recipe Book Stand, £49, from Halkes Original Copperwork via Etsy; etsy.com 38. TOP GEAR   All the ingredients that Ottolenghi is known for are packaged together with his latest recipe book so they can be put to good use. How thoughtful you’ll seem. (Other book bundles also available.) Ottolenghi Simple Cookbook and Ingredient Set, £39, buy online; souschef.co.uk


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39. ESPRESSO YOURSELF There will be no need to ever go without your caffeine fix again if Father Christmas leaves this flash portable coffee maker in your stocking. Wacaco Nanopresso Espresso Machine, £62, from Harvey Nichols; harveynichols.com 40. SHELL OUT This classy bit of kit is new in for autumn, and the colours in the cool tortoiseshell design are particularly apt for the season, too. Glass Decanter and Goblet set, £90, from Oka in Bath; oka.com 41. TEATIME This extra-special teapot is designed and hand-thrown in

Bath by local potter Kara Leigh Ford. Each of them is truly one-of-a-kind and the perfect size for tea for one. Kara Leigh Ford Ceramics Teapot, £125, buy online from Etsy; etsy.com 42. GIN SEASON The recipient of this gin subscription will receive a new seasonal Psychopomp gin every three months for a year – talk about a gift that keeps on giving. Gin Subscription, £140, from Psychopomp; microdistillery.co.uk REAT

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make it just as delicious, too. Daylesford Mary Gift Box, £70, buy online; daylesford.com 44. IT’S A COVER-UP Be real: you’ll never look quite as stylish as when you’re whipping up a feast in this bad boy (or, y’know, just wearing it around the house with whatever outfit you choose). Risdon and Risdon Denim Street Apron, £75, buy online from Sous Chef; souschef.co.uk 45. CHRISTMAS SPIRIT

FOR Single-estate gin and vodka A M X S G! – straight from Wiltshire – are IN packaged in a handsome MORN

43. HAIL MARY Bloody Marys on Crimbo morning is as important a tradition as that turkey, we reckon. With tomato juice made from Isle of Wight toms, South West distilled vodka and celery salt and peppercorns, you can

wicker hamper with two glasses, a stirrer and a voucher for two to tour the distillery, making a perfect package for festive gifting. Ramsbury Estate Christmas Hamper, £90, buy online; ramsburyestates.co.uk

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FLASHING THE CASH

46. NICE WHEELS If anyone would care to gift us this Art Deco-style drinks trolley, all rose gold and mirrored glass, we’ll repay you by wheeling over a drink. Fair? Rice Cocktail Cart, £359.95, from Fig 1; fig1.co.uk 47. QUICK MIX This may be the coolest mixer KitchenAid has ever unveiled, with its textured matte finish. It comes with all the standard accessories and an extra helping of class. KitchenAid Pebbled Palm Artisan Mixer, £599, from Harts of Stur; kitchenaid.co.uk


The full Italian festive feast! Bookings now being taken, check out our website for more details. Opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday: 09:00 - 15:00, 18:00 - 22:00 | Sunday to Monday: 09:00 - 15:00

Celebrate Christmas at The Mint Room! Check out our festive menus online


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UNIQUE DINING EXPERIENCES SUPPER CLUB NO. 3: SPAIN Foodies and wine lovers, we bring you The Square Supper Club... On Wednesday 30 October The Square hosts the third in it's series of special food and wine pairing evenings. Welcoming you with a Perrier-Jouët champagne reception, you will enjoy five exceptional Spanish wines introduced by a wine expert from Bodegas Corral and accompanied by a seasonal fivecourse tasting menu. Wines can also be purchased at a significant discount.

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VIETNAMESE SUPPER CLUB Tuck into delicious Vietnamese food “My Supper Club in Bath offers a fun, informal dining experience with a set menu of five deIicious, freshly prepared Vietnamese dishes that I reveal to all diners on the night,” says Noya. “I love hosting Supper Club and hope you’ll love it too.”

£ 45 PP

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Early bookings are essential at www.noyaskitchen.co.uk

HARVEST DINNER WITH MARK HIX A unique take on British gastronomy On Tuesday 19 November join renowned chef and restaurateur Mark Hix at the Pump Room, Bath for a harvest dinner, featuring some of the finest locallysourced South West produce. Begin the evening with a sparkling reception around the Roman Baths, before moving upstairs to the Pump Room for a three-course harvest dinner with expertly paired wines, followed by coffee.

£ 75 PP

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Book online at www.searcys.co.uk/mark-hix-dinner

CURRY NIGHT IN PARTNERSHIP WITH THE MINT ROOM, BATH An east-meets-west culinary collaboration On Monday 18 November enjoy a culinary tour of the subcontinent at No.15, with a 6-course feast devised by the respective head chefs. There’ll be street food to start, followed by melting Rajasthani lamb chops, Old Delhi butter chicken, lamb biryani, tikka spiced monkfish and more. Includes fizz on arrival and wines. Served between 7-11pm. Book online at www.bit.ly/33sn2ET

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£ 68 PP

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FOR A SPECIAL NIGHT OUT, WHY NOT SAMPLE ONE OF OUR PATCH’S GREAT SUPPER CLUBS OR PRIVATE DINING OPTIONS?

PRIVATE DINING AT CLAYTON’S KITCHEN Enjoy Mediterranean and modern French cuisine The Wine Room at Clayton’s Kitchen seats 18 guests on one big table, or 40 guests on four tables of ten, available for lunch or dinner with a £49 3-course or £45 2-course menu (min 12 guests). Drinks and canapés or buffet receptions can also be held for up to 80 (min 20 guests).

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Travelling Bistro

FLAVOURFUL OCCASIONS Family-run, with a mutual love for food and quality service The Travelling Bistro strives to provide the best quality home-made produce, and has a selection of set and bespoke menus. From festivals and pop-up restaurants to weddings and parties, The Travelling Bistro can be hired for any public or private event and can tailor to most needs.

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Find out more about upcoming events at www.travellingbistro.co.uk

TASTING MENU Please your palate with a delicious tasting menu Seven courses of fresh, seasonal ingredients are presented in this relaxed and stylish country Inn. The drink pairings allow you to fully appreciate the full flavours of the dish, along with its carefully selected libation. The menu is £48 per person and drinks flight £18.

FROM

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Book online at www.signoftheangel.co.uk

BOTTOMLESS RACLETTE! Experience a taste of France Following the massive success they had in London, Comptoir + Cuisine invites you to join them from 7pm on Thursday, 7 November for the first night of their Bottomless Raclette Party in Bath. It’s best to book in advance (although, if they can accommodate you on the night, they will) for an hour and a half of fun.

£ 21 PP

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Book online at www.comptoirpluscuisine.com

THE GREEN ROOM Stylishly social… The Green Room lends itself perfectly to foodie adventures. Take a seat at the Chef’s Table, where you will watch the chef preparing your food in front of you. The Green Room is open every night from 6.30pm and is available for private hire.

PRIVATE HIR FROM £1 E 50 FOR MA 0 X. 30 GUES TS

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Book online at www.whatleymanor.com. For private bookings please email events@whatleymanor.com or call 01666 834026. F o r mo re i nf o rma t i o n and te rms and c ond itions, ple ase visit th e c ompany’s w e b site.

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ALL ROASTS NOW £10!

Better r than you ! Mum’s

BOOK NOW FOR SUNDAY LUNCH SERVED BETWEEN NOON – 5PM. CALL 01761 417711

AFTERNOON TEA AFTERNOON TEA £20(pp) CREAM TEA £9(pp) Bo o ki n gs can be made vi a Club Recept i o n

Best Western Plus Centurion Hotel Charlton Lane, Midsomer Norton, Nr Bath BA3 4BD 01761 417711 www.centurionhotel.co.uk

@seanhorwood

centurionhotel


EATING-OUT INSPO, INSIDER KNOWLEDGE AND FOOD PIONEERS

MAINS HIGHLIGHTS

56 THE GONG SHOW

All the winners from the Crumbs Awards 2019 (and why they won)

69 HAPPY BEAT

Our amazing celebratory awards cake was made by Beth Al-Rikabi (AKA The Free Range Chef)

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CRUMBSMAG.COM

PAOLO FERL A

An amazing new foodie dance party, just outside Bath


CRUMBS AWARDS 2019

PAO LO FE R LA

BIGGER, BETTER, MORE

Now in its third great year, the 2019 Crumbs Awards was our biggest yet, with more attendees and sponsors (and celebratory drinks!) than ever before. In fact, Bristol’s Old Vic was rocking – and bulging at the seams. But who took home the gongs? That would be this inspiring lot… 56 CRUMBSMAG.COM


M A I N S

B BLOCK

What makes B Block so good? Part of it, of course, is to do with the quality – this is some fine food, no doubt – and part of it is to do with B Block’s location (Keynsham’s Chocolate Quarter), and quite how quickly it’s become an important part of its community. There’s a massive focus on families, for instance (they offer kids’ pizzas for £1), but they also run cinema singalong nights and sponsor the Keynsham 10k; behind the scenes, their apprentice, Chris Barry, became Weston College’s Apprentice of the Year. “We had record takings this year,” says Adrian Kirikmaa, food development manager at retirement village specialists St Monica Trust, which runs B Block, “and have worked with all sorts of charities, including Bristol Sport Foundation, Bright Sparks, Bristol Soup Run, FareShare and The Matthew Tree Project. We also had a marvellous Belly Laughs event with Josh Widdicombe and local comedy legend – and Crumbs Awards host – Mark Olver.” What did the judges say? “As well as having a clear focus on sustainability and local produce, B Block has become a real hub for all ages in the community.” b-blockpizza.co.uk

BEST RESTAURANT BULRUSH

Bristol’s unassuming but excellent Bulrush offers “thoughtful, innovative and modern cooking alongside warm, caring and informed service,” says restaurant manager Oscar Neill. “We’ve given the restaurant a bit of a spruce up here and there, and – as a result – have a space that we feel relaxed and comfortable in, and think our guests will too. Also good: retaining our Michelin star.” Oh yes, that star: Bulrush first earned it this time last year, and has kept its place in Michelin’s prestigious list for 2020, too. “Chef George Livesey and his team spend every day 100 per cent focussed on delivering the very best food they can, and truly love making people happy through food,” Oscar says. “The recognition of our peers in the supremely talented Bristol and Bath food scene inspires us to keep on pushing and elevates everything we do.” What did the judges say? “Offering a modern best of British selection, this beloved Bristol restaurant consistently creates distinctive and memorable dining experiences.” bulrushrestaurant.co.uk

BEST EVENT

THE COFFEE HOUSE PROJECT

From the top: The B Block guys are about more than just damn fine pizzas (though they do those too); Bulrush is small, unremarkablelooking, but actually quite brilliant; and The Coffee House Project went from nothing to everything in an impressive no time at all

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Our patch is full of excellent coffee houses – and people who really know and respect coffee – so what might happen, thought Sofia Simou and Louisa Parry, if we could somehow bring them all together? Their inaugural Coffee House Project event, full of panel discussions and hands-on workshops at The Passenger Shed, did just that last year. “Whether it’s the roasters, the startups, the old-timers or just visitors wanting to learn, have fun and enjoy a new experience, we wanted to bring people together for a fun and caffeinated couple of days,” they say. “To give these discussions longevity, we recorded podcasts at the event too.” The really remarkable thing about these guys is how quickly they operate: in just 12 months they met, formed a company, created a concept, developed a brand, and delivered a festival that got over 1,300 visitors through the doors. The guys are already working on CHP 2020, and there might be smaller pop-up The Coffee House Project events throughout the year too. What did the judges say? “This inventive project has brought renewed passion into the local coffee scene whilst working tirelessly raising awareness for sustainable food usage.” thecoffeehouseproject.co.uk

BEST INDUSTRY SERVICE DUCHESS MEDIA

One of the great things about the Crumbs Awards is that plenty of people there know each other already – and those who don’t are keen to meet colleagues and rivals they’ve respected from afar. But perhaps best-connected of all are Meg Pope and Frankie Wallington of Duchess Media, a marketing, events and PR

PHOTO S BY NICCI PE E T

BEST CASUAL DINING


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BEST CAFÉ

EAT YOUR GREENS

One of the best of the recent crop of vegetarian and vegan cafés is Eat Your Greens, chef-proprietor Babs Greaves’ gaff on Wells Road offering, she says, “inclusive plant-based eating in a homely and relaxing space, with friendly service and locally sourced ingredients.” The great team here are exceptionally close, and Babs is especially chuffed, she says, that they’ve managed to source so much from local growers, such as Redcatch Community Garden and Barley Wood Walled Garden. “It’s paramount to me to support other small businesses,” she says, “and feeling part of the community of Totterdown is great. Plus, it’s so affirming to see that the Crumbs judges value the things we’re passionate about – and it’s always wonderful to feel you’re making food that people really like!” They’ve great plans for next year too – “I’m going to crack gluten-free vegan Yorkshire puddings, for sure” – but most of all they’ll keep on keeping on with their simple but enticing recipe: solid ethics and values, lovely staff and tasty food. What did the judges say? “Eat Your Greens succeeds in making plant-based food accessible to everyone. Passionate staff, seamless service and outstanding quality produce, locally sourced: great!" facebook.com/eatyourgreensbristol

BEST RETAILER

FIELD AND FLOWER

Again, from the top: Meg and Frankie of Duchess with their customary glasses of wine; team spirit at Eat Your Greens; and the founders of Field and Flower (sadly, only the field was available for photos...)

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When James Mansfield and James Flower founded Field and Flower, they wanted to help up the quality of British meat and fish. “We support indie British farmers and fishermen,” they say, “and we want customers to know where their food has come from, who farms it, the life our animals have led and how our meat is butchered. Every cut and catch is 100 per cent traceable from field and sea to fridge.” Over the past year their online presence has grown hugely, they’ve launched a new sustainable, seasonal fish range and a seven-day delivery service, and they’ve reduced the plastic packaging in their meat boxes; plus, alongside their Crumbs award, The Telegraph has named them Best Meat Box, calling theirs ‘a cut above the rest’. Next year they’ll be expanding their product range yet again, with new soups, stocks, sous-vide and sauces, and launching a new loyalty scheme. “Overall,” they say, “we hope to continue to grow in a sustainable way, bringing on new small farms and independent producers from across the South West.” What did the judges say? “Field and Flower delivers high-quality produce and sustainable fish to customers’ doors, straight from Somerset. A fast-growing, reliable business.” fieldandflower.co.uk

BEST FOODIE PUB

THE GALLIMAUFRY

Much loved Gloucester Road indie restaurant, bar, live music venue and arts space The Gallimaufry – ‘The Galli’ to its friends, and there are many of them – is a genuine institution, giving a platform to all sorts of local outfits: food producers, drink makers, artists and musicians. The menu is evenly split between vegetarian and meat and fish options, prices are reasonable, and the quality is high – and this last is true of The Galli’s arty side too. Indeed, co-owner James Koch has just launched a record label, Astral Tusk, specifically to support the city’s emerging modern jazz scene. It might not

PHOTO S BY NICCI PE E T AND FIE LD AND FLOW E R

agency that works exclusively with independent Bristol food and drink businesses. Their last year has been a huge one, the team doubling in size to help them promote such exciting new openings as Seven Lucky Gods, Masa and Mezcal and Black Rock. “We’re totally obsessed with the Bristol food and drink scene,” they say. “There’s nowhere like this city for passion, creativity and amazing community spirit when it comes to food, and we’re so, so proud to be a part of it. That’s why winning a Crumbs Award means so much – to be recognised for our support of the industry by the people driving it forward is massive.” What did the judges say? “Hard-working, trusted and a go-to marketer for many independent food businesses across five successful years. 2019 capped the biggest and best yet for Duchess Media.” duchessmedia.com


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BEST REVOLUTIONARY TECH HUGGG

Never heard of Huggg? You will: it’s a micro-gifting platform, allowing people to send real-life treats in an instant. (Think coffee, cake, cinema tickets and more.) And it’s not just in Bristol and Bath but nationwide, with over 1,000 partner locations across the UK. “People are using Huggg to treat their friends and family,” says head of brand Olivia O’Brien, “while businesses are using it to surprise and delight their customers, reward their teams – and be more human.” Named a Forbes ‘One to Watch 2019’, Huggg has big ambitions: no less, in fact, than becoming the world’s leading micro-gifting app. “It’s been a bonkers, wild ride so far,” Olivia says, “with none of that set to change for 2020. This year we grew our supply base from around 300 sites in three cities to over 1,000, and have seen thousands of people and companies choosing to send Hugggs. (And thousands more redeeming them, of course.) People have an intrinsic desire to make others feel good, and we’ve built something that enables you to do just that – in an instant. We’re a small team with big ambitions, and to be recognised for that feels good. Almost as good as a Huggg.” What did the judges say? “This clever start-up has found a niche by offering redeemable Huggg cakes and coffees, benefiting the region’s cafés.” huggg.me

BEST FRONT OF HOUSE

HER MAJESTY’S SECRET SERVICE

This neighbourhood cocktail bar is now four years old and credits much of its success to the way it’s removed pretension from the cocktail world; the team have built a strong range of low- and no-alcohol cocktails into their offering, too. These guys are notably green-minded, being among the first in Bristol to champion the reusable straw, and making sure all their single-use garnishes (like pea shoots and micro herbs) are completely edible. Service, however, is what they won for – the team here is small (just five of them) and though the bar itself is highly theatrical (with its hidden doors and a telephone box entrance), the welcome is relaxed, informal and friendly. Make no mistake, these guys are top-notch bartenders – they compete regularly in national competitions – but their lack of ego is equally important to HMSS’s ongoing success. What did the judges say? “Consistent team, consistent quality means that this destination cocktail bar concocts a special place for a quirky night out.” hmssbristol.com

BEST DRINKS PRODUCER

HULLABALOOS LEMONADE

“Our mission is to create a new wave of natural, premium soft drinks to be remembered, because they pack a punch with their zingy bursts of fruity awesomeness,” say owners Randa and Leigh Abdullah-Hucker. “You’ll find no baddies or bubbles in our drinks, as we use only fresh fruit juice and no chemicals, colourings or preservatives.” The guys set up Hullabaloos Lemonade in 2014, initially to sell fresh lemonade at events throughout Somerset. But it quickly became apparent that the potential market was rather larger than that, the turning point coming when a large local farm shop asked if they could bottle it. They could, of course, and since then sales have increased year on year; indeed, over the last 12 months production has doubled. “We feel very lucky to be making lemonade for a living,” the guys say, “and hope this comes across. Crumbs is seen as a real foodie magazine, and to be recognised by such experts in their field means a huge amount to us.” What did the judges say? “This product has been a labour of love for its founders, creating a unique product. Hullabaloos Lemonade has gone from strength to strength, demonstrating impressive growth.” hullabaloos.rocks

BEST FOOD PRODUCER IVY HOUSE FARM

Geoff Bowles runs Ivy House Farm with his wife, Kim, and the pair have a simple mission: “to provide,” he says, “high-quality organic Jersey dairy products from our small, family-run farm.” The last few years have been exciting ones, as they’ve introduced glass bottles to their range to cut down on plastic usage – “that’s really taken off, which we’re chuffed about” – and for the first time became Royal Warrant holders. “Winning this award, though, has been the cherry on top,” Geoff says. “It means everything to us, and shows that we’re striving to be the very best organic dairy producers.” This is a business with the welfare of its herd of Jerseys at the heart of what they do, too. (Thank Geoff’s son, Darren, for that.) But their plans don’t end here. An extension to the dairy is nearly complete, giving them a sparkling new milk production area and butter room. Pat and Pauline, their head butter-makers, can’t wait. What did the judges say? “This family-run farm has a strong focus on top-notch organic dairy products, whilst being a shining example of high animal welfare.” ivyhousefarmdairy.co.uk

Clockwise from top left: The gang’s all here at The Galli; Darren and Geoff of Ivy House Farm; new all-electric vans join the team at Larkhall Butchers; Rising Star Daniel Jimpson at The Old Ham Tree; happy faces at Hullabaloos and HMSS; and (quite on brand, really) a little bit of cuddling at Huggg

BEST SUPPLIER

LARKHALL BUTCHERS

Larkhall Butchers is a contemporary butchers shop with traditional values, specialising in dry-aged beef, game, poultry and pork. “We work with local suppliers, such as Jamie’s Farm over in Box, and have a real passion for where our produce comes from,” says boss Peter Milton. “This year we’ve been trying to become as eco-friendly as possible: hence our 100 per cent electric vans, and further focus on local produce. We’re also building up the next generation of butchers, and have trained three full-time butchers in 2019 alone.” And there’s more to come from these guys, not least a total renovation of their store in Larkhall – a residential and shopping area on the eastern edge of Bath – during 2020. “Winning a Crumbs award gives us a sense of pride,” Peter says, “as it puts us right in amongst so many people and businesses we hugely respect, like Chris from The Olive Tree.” What did the judges say? “Larkhall Butchers strongly champions the use of sustainable food. Another strong, impressive year.” larkhallbutchers.co.uk

RISING STAR

DANIEL JIMPSON OLD HAM TREE

“Old Ham Tree is a proper pub, serving homemade pub grub in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere,” says apprentice Daniel Jimpson, who won Crumbs’ Rising Star award. “The team is solid – everyone has been here for two years or more – and we’ve increased the number of customers we get, including those returning on a regular basis. But though it’s a very small team, we still have three members of staff on apprenticeship schemes at some level or other. In fact, I’m looking forward to helping train the newbies.” Next up, Daniel plans on expanding his horizons by travelling, while both working on his future career and helping this top-drawer Holt boozer enjoy another successful year. What did the judges say? “Daniel goes far beyond customer expectations and provides unrivalled service with his strong product knowledge. An invaluable cog to this vibrant village pub.” theoldhamtree.com

BEST CHEF

CHRIS CLEGHORN

THE OLIVE TREE RESTAURANT AT THE QUEENSBERRY HOTEL

Our two cities have plenty of great restaurants within their boundaries, of course, but not so many with Michelin stars: Casamia, Bulrush, Paco Tapas, Wilks, and this one, The Olive Tree Restaurant at the Queensberry Hotel in the centre of Bath. This place is perhaps best described as relaxed fine dining, with modern techniques pressed into the service of classic flavours. 60 CRUMBSMAG.COM

PH OTOS BY N I CC I PE ET, CA ROL E G OU L D A ND F O CUS F I RS T ME D IA

be quite what you’d expect, but that’s The Galli all over. What did the judges say? “The Galli holds a special place in the heart of Gloucester Road, providing an eclectic mix of friendly venue space and revered seasonal food. Incredibly forward-thinking!” thegallimaufry.co.uk


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“This last year has been an incredible one,” says head chef Chris Cleghorn. “Not only were we awarded our first Michelin star last October, but we’ve just found out that we’ve maintained it too, meaning we’re still the only Michelin star restaurant in Bath. Our aim is for every customer to have an exceptional experience, and since Crumbs magazine focuses on the area’s dining culture and the best in our area, it’s a special honour to be recognised.” Since the awards ceremony, Chris has taken time out to support Fareshare South West – which helps to feed thousands of children from deprived areas – by cooking breakfast for the children of St Martin’s Primary School. “We do this using surplus food,” Chris says, “and I’m all for no waste. In fact, you can expect to see The Olive Tree working with many important causes in the future, as it’s important we give back to the community.” What did the judges say? “Chris’ flair and knowledge of flavours mean he creates original contemporary dishes from classical ideas. Also impressively keen to help the next generation of chefs.” olivetreebath.co.uk

BEST BAR/PUB

ORCHARD INN

This December sees the first anniversary of co-owners Steph Iles and Sam Marriott taking on the lease at The Orchard Inn on Bristol’s Harbourside, and things have been all go ever since. “We hope that our genuine passion and enthusiasm for cider – and for traditional freehouse pubs generally – is apparent,” Steph says, “and at a time when bars are outweighing ‘proper’ pubs, I like to think that the Crumbs judges wanted to show their respect to a true Bristol institution. The continued support of the regulars who have been drinking here for years has been so important to Sam and me – it shows we must be doing something right! – but we’re also pleased to have attracted new customers, who’ve since become regulars too.” They’re currently planning a party for the locals to help them celebrate their first year – “we want to take them to a wassail at one of our cider maker’s farms,” Steph says – and they’re keen to get involved with external events, to showcase their incredible ciders. What did the judges say? “The Orchard Inn is a stand-out offering in Bristol, with cider at the heart of what it does. A true, honest local pub.” orchardinn.co.uk

BEST ROAMING KITCHEN

PH OTOS BY N I CC I PE ET A N D F OC US F IR S T M E DI A

QUEEN AND WHIPPET CATERING

“We help private and corporate catering clients delight their guests with relaxed fine dining,” say Jo and Pete Cranston, founders of Queen and Whippet Catering. “Using incredible West Country produce we create restaurant-quality menus that showcase our values, and through consistently positive client feedback we’re confident that our food and service are really hitting the mark. When the thank-you cards drop onto our doormat, it makes our hearts absolutely sing!” These guys set out to create a tailored experience for every event, and as well as the big stuff love running smaller, more intimate supper clubs; they’ve become a recommended supplier at local venues that share their ethos too, including Hilles House and Parish’s House. What do they think swayed the judges to pick them as winners? “Perhaps they’ve tried Pete’s cave-matured Cheddar gelato,” Jo says, “as it seems to win everyone over? Starting up a food business is tough, and winning a Crumbs Award validates our decision to stick it out and keep the quality high.” What did the judges say? “Queen and Whippet smartly seized an opportunity to provide high-class catering, with distinctive themed menus for private and corporate clients.” queenandwhippet.com

From top: Chris Cleghorn, with an award (we’re saying) to rival his Michelin star; Steph and Sam at ‘proper pub’ The Orchard Inn; and Jo and Pete of Queen and Whippet Catering

BEST COOKERY SCHOOL

SQUARE FOOD FOUNDATION

Square Food Foundation teaches people of all ages and abilities how to cook good food. “This year we launched an ambitious programme with a local primary school, Oasis Academy Connaught,” says founder Barny Haughton, “and over the next year we’ll work with their children, families and staff to transform food culture and tackle food poverty. Our 12-week training programme, How To Be 62 CRUMBSMAG.COM


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A Chef, continues to gather momentum too, and this autumn seven young people, who are not in employment, education or training, will take their first steps towards working in the food industry.” Barny started his cookery school back in 1998, but though the location’s changed the ethos remains the same. “We’re still championing cooking as something that’s critical to our health, and the health of our planet,” he says. “We’ll keep working with our partner organisations, teaching their staff and service users how to cook, and we’ll continue with our own programmes. Learning to cook is not only a useful life skill, it’s a way to connect with other people, improve health, save money and live independently.” What did the judges say? “Square Food Foundation isn’t just a cookery school. Its clever offering is making a real impact on those most vulnerable in the community. We applaud you!” squarefoodfoundation.co.uk

BEST NEWCOMER

EIGHT STONY STREET

“Eight Stony Street is a Frome wine-based business that seeks to give people multiple reasons to cross the threshold,” says owner Kent Barker, “so we have a wine shop, wine bar and restaurant, all committed to the highest quality. That’s why our cured meats come from The Real Cure in Dorset and our coffee is from Dusty Ape in Trowbridge; most of our wines are from small family concerns too.” Kent is proud that he’s managed to take a “bare, empty, failed business” and turn it into an award-winning one, employing 25 people and serving plenty of loyal customers. “I’d have thought, though, that we won for our amazing staff, who we’re so proud to have working for us and who always go the extra mile,” he says. “Something like this makes all the hard work worthwhile.” In November these guys start their first sourdough courses, and they’ll run a wine course next year too. The biggest news, though, is that they’re now looking for a second site – probably in Bristol. What did the judges say? “These clever and ambitious operators have rapidly created one of Frome’s finest restaurants, with a vibrant modern offer on an appealing post-industrial site.” eightstonystreet.com

The Square Food Foundation gang with an award that neatly echoes the shape of their logo; the guys from Frome’s latest institution, Eight Stony Street; and we’ve a brace of gongs for a brace of Janes at the very deserving Step and Stone

PH OTOS NI C CI PE E T A N D PAOLO F E RL A

BEST INITIATIVE STEP AND STONE

Step and Stone is a bakery specialising in award-winning artisan lavosh in five delicious flavours: classic, poppyseed, rosemary and sea salt, sesame, and smoked paprika and cayenne. These slim, elegant flatbreads go perfectly with cheese, dips or pâté, and are made from top-quality local ingredients. All very tasty – but their lavosh, of course, is not the only reason they won. “We’re actually a social enterprise, working with young people with learning disabilities to help get them into paid employment,” say executive directors Jane Chong and Jane Kippax. “Though educational opportunities are often much better for a young person with a learning disability than they were, it’s a different story when it comes to getting a job. Only a shocking six per cent are in paid work, in spite of over 60 per cent saying they would like to be.” Step and Stone is all about increasing that statistic by teaching baking and employment skills, enhancing confidence and social skills, and then aiming to find paid employment for the trainees, if that’s what they wish. “We work with around 40 young people at the moment and to date have five that we’ve placed in paid jobs, with another three well on their way,” Jane Kippax says. This year has been a good one: they’ve been lucky enough to win a large grant from the National Lottery, and their lavosh is winning them awards: two Taste of the West Awards, a Great Taste Award, and now a brace of Crumbs Awards too. “These ones are particularly special to us,” says Jane Chong, “as they’ve been awarded by the food community. We really want to get the message across that, with the right support and opportunity, a person with a learning disability can do a very good job – and that all sorts of businesses can accommodate a member of staff with a learning disability. Winning really increases our exposure; after all, we want to change the world, one lavosh at a time!” What did the judges say? “Step and Stone brings confidence and pride to people passionate about learning culinary skills all across the region. A hard-working team using food to change lives.” stepandstone.co 64 CRUMBSMAG.COM


Award Winning, Family Run Farm Shop Established for over 30 years Selling Quality Local Produce Open Daily 9am – 6pm (9.30am – 5pm on Sundays)

HOME & LOCALLY REARED FRESH MEAT, POULTRY & GAME HOMEMADE SAUSAGES, BURGERS & FAGGOTS

CHRISTMAS MEAT ORDERS NOW BEING TAKEN

LOCAL CHEESES & HOME COOKED MEATS LOCALLY GROWN VEGETABLES, FRUIT & SALADS HOMEMADE CAKES & PIES LOCALLY MADE CHOCOLATES & FUDGE FINE WINE, LOCAL ALE & CIDER PRESERVES & CHUTNEYS GIFT HAMPERS

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A new breed of supper club has landed in Bath. Bringing together unique venues with top chefs and carefully curated soundtracks, M2M Presents is planning the follow-up to its inaugural sell-out bEat event – and it’s going to be twice as big. Jessica Carter catches up with the team to find out what they’re plotting...

Food and music go hand in hand at this atmospheric new event

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GENERATION

b E A T


Euridge Manor is an impressive events space just outside Bath

A

fter winding down the skinny country lanes of the South Cotswolds in the evening darkness – with no real idea of where you are anymore – your driver finally comes to a stop. You’re surrounded by hundreds of acres of landscaped gardens, as well as the Cotswolds hills beyond – although the inky night cloaks the lush scenery from view. Alighting from your ride, you are led on foot to a thatched boathouse looking out over a shimmering lake, where an impressive country manor house dominates the backdrop. Braziers crackle with warmth, their orange flames licking at the cold November air, and ambient electronic music fills the space. You glance over at the DJ before your attention is stolen by the offer of a hot cocktail, which you clasp with both hands. You and your friends gravitate to one of the fires, soaking up the atmosphere and impressive setting, while canapés are passed around. Soon, you’ll be moving on to the second of the evening’s three locations to tuck into a banquet feast by candlelight. The DJ soundtrack continues, while circus performers repeatedly drag your attention away from the people you’re in conversation with. As the evening progresses, the banquet melts into a decadent afterparty. This is the picture that Olly Barkley paints as I quiz him about the event concept which he and fellow former Bath Rugby player Ed Jackson have conceived for a special evening this month. The pair met playing rugby, but it was off the pitch, after they’d both retired, that they formed their friendship and, subsequently, their charitable events business. “Ed would talk to me about this idea for a company he had,” says Olly. “There were all these things he wanted to do, a spinal unit he wanted to build and needed to raise the money for.” This story began way before these conversations started happening, though. See, in April 2017, then-29year-old Bath sports pro Ed suffered a life-changing

injury. Diving into the shallow end of a swimming pool saw him break his neck and lose the use of his limbs – not to mention, almost, his life. Despite the seriousness of the accident and the doctors’ prognosis that he’d never walk again, a year later Ed was climbing Snowdon and six months after that he was returning from a trip to Nepal with schemes to fund the building of a spinal unit in Chitwan. That’s where his former colleague Olly came in. Together, the pair hatched a plan to put on events that would raise funds for charities close to their hearts. First and foremost: £250,000 for the building of that Nepalese facility. So, M2M was founded last December. “The idea was to start a company that would be genuinely altruistic,” says Olly. “People often ask, ‘why Nepal?’ Well, if you break your neck in England, you’ll be looked after, even if you don’t have private healthcare. In Nepal, generally, the mortality rate from accidents like this is super high because they don’t get the care. And it doesn’t just affect the individual but the family, because obviously the healthiest, youngest, strongest will go out and earn the money, so if they become injured the whole family suffers. The knock-on effect of these injuries is huge in Nepal. And, you know, we all live under the same sky.” The bEat events are based on three elements: food, music and light. They’re designed as unique and exciting charity fundraisers, aimed at younger demographics. Coming from Bath Rugby, the pair had been to a lot of fundraisers in their time. “The whole event kind of came about because we were so bored of going to the same corporate events, with the same circular tables, the same place settings and auctions and heads-and-tales games and wine flights. They can be really fun when you’re with the right people, but you kind of know every time you go to one what the blueprint is, and we thought, why can’t we create an event which is for charity but is something people would want to come to regardless? I’ve always been massively into live experiences, festivals, events... I’m more sort of a music

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BEAT AT EURIDGE MANOR, IN NUMBERS

8

The length of the party in hours

160

The headcount of people who will be there, feasting (and dancing)

3

The number of locations and ‘phases’ of the night

90

The price in English pounds for each ticket (£100 if you leave it late)

572

The number of candles someone’s going to have to light in the banquet hall (NB This is, of course, a total approximation pulled out of thin air and has not been confirmed or denied)


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head that found rugby, rather than a rugby player that ended up doing music.” After the success of the first bEat event at Walcot House in Bath, M2M decided to go all out for its next banquet, and Euridge Manor seemed like the perfect venue. Owned by John Robinson (founder of fashion brand Jigsaw) and designed by Isabel and Julian Bannerman, the one-time farm is now an estate comprising an orangery, cloister, several buildings, acres of skilfully landscaped gardens and even ‘medieval ruins’. Originally intended solely as the family home, a couple of years ago John decided to open it up and offer it for hire. “It’s booked for the next three years for weddings,” Olly says. “I’ve been to some pretty impressive weddings in France and Italy, but this place knocks the socks off all those venues. And they’ve really kindly donated it to us for the weekend. “As we walked around it we could see the whole night unfold; different parts of the grounds lend themselves to different parts of the night. It’s like it’s been tailor-made for what we want. I can’t believe it’s 15 minutes from Bath and everyone doesn’t know about it!” Taking care of culinary proceedings is Neil Smith of Babbington House and Eddy Rains of the Wheatsheaf in Combe Hay. Eddy knows the former rugby players through this popular local gastropub, where he’s been cooking for a decade. He’s revisiting his fine-dining roots for the occasion, having worked with the likes of Michael Caines and held roles at high-end and Michelin-starred restaurants all over the world, including Bath’s very own The Bath Priory. “My background is in very fine dining food and I’ve been given free rein – but we M2M’s first bEat do want to include plenty of plant-based event at Walcot House was a sellout dishes, giving people different options. – so move quickly if “My style is quite classic British, classic you want to be at ideas but with a little twist.” the next one... This chef has certainly taken the whole concept of the evening onboard when writing his menu, too. “We’ll be serving big meat, fish and vegetable platters for everyone to share and pass around. I’m thinking of one dish that’s a bit like bolognese but it’s going to be fishbased with braised cuttlefish, maybe with squid ink pasta, because the dress code is black.” The 60-metre room will be lit entirely by candles (the group work with local Bath florist and prop hire biz Flowers by Passion) and guests will sit at two long tables, stretching the length of the hall, eating in real banquet style to a carefully curated soundtrack. With Tanquery sponsoring the evening, there will be cocktails available throughout the night, specially crafted to complement the food offering, as well as a – I hope you’re sitting down? – Negroni fountain. This is just the beginning of the journey for the ambitious team, who want to bring their music-enhanced supper club events to venues across the country. So keep your ear to the ground for more of these conceptual popups. Feasting has never sounded so good.

The bEat event at Euridge Manor is on 30 November. Prices include travel to and from the venue, bottomless welcome drinks, canapés, dinner and music until late. Buy your tickets online; them2mgroup.com

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Hondo Sushi and Japanese fine dining restaurant

Freshly prepared food using the best quality produce 2 floors of dining and takeaways available

Sushi — Bentos — Donburi Bao buns — Katsu currys BOOK NOW TO AVOID DISAPPOINTMENT! 8-9 St James's Parade, Bath

T: 01225 920420


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Clifton’s Independent Greengrocer

Affluent, active and influential and just a call away Quality produce that is seasonal and local where possible. Varieties and prices that you often won’t find in the supermarkets. Open Monday to Saturday 9-6, Sunday 11-4 6, Boyces Avenue, Clifton, Bristol BS8 4AA | 0117 9706777

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AFTERS

NEW AND NOTABLE RESTAURANTS, PUBS AND CAFÉS

HIGHLIGHTS

76 GOOD NEIGHBOURS Bianchis is the neighbourhood joint of dreams

78 HOME TIME A year into its new ownership, what’s Homewood cooking up?

80 DOUBLE FIGURES

This Rosemarino dish requires some serious napkin-tuckedinto-collar action

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K I RS T I E YO UN G

Rosemarino is 10 – but how is the old faithful faring?


T If you’re partial to a Campari, we say you’re in luck...

N EW N EIG HB O U R HO O D H A N G OUT S

BIANCHIS

Is this much-anticipated new kid on the Montpelier block the restaurant that Jessica Carter (and, let’s face it, the rest of Bristol) hoped it would be?

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he napkin on my lap looks like the handkerchief of a Victorian chimney sweep, covered in black smudges. I casually wonder what kind of state my chin is in as I slurp up another forkful of the long, thick bucatini that’s heavily slicked with the blackest ink, not caring enough to pause and check. This cuttlefish and vermouth ragu is full of savoury umami character, with occasional hits of garlic and fennel seed. The handmade pasta is thick and wiry, cooked with confident bite, while the hunks of seafood hiding amongst it are tender and supple – I will the tangle of glossy, inky carb never to end. Alas – nothing lasts forever. A sentiment that this restaurant’s former resident will attest. In fact, lots of things don’t last half as long as I’d like – namely, every peanut butter milkshake I’ve ever had, Fleabag (I will never stop praying for a third series) and any and all plants that have ever been in my care. Bell’s Diner’s lifespan, while admittedly not infinite, was far longer than any of those, mind. It was the end of an era when it closed down at the beginning of this year after four decades in business, so locals were understandably pretty grieved. The team behind the ever-popular Pasta Loco on Cotham Hill (and its sister sites, Pasta Ripiena and La Sorella in the city centre), led by Bristolian cousins Dominic Borel and Ben Harvey, swooped in early doors to snap up this famous site, knowing exactly what they were going to do with it; Dom and Ben had long ago fleshed out the concept for the old-school trattoria-style restaurant they’d like to open one day. Said day came on 29 August this year, when the longawaited Bianchis unlocked its doors. Old-school might have been what the team were going for – and you can see it in the polished wood,


A F T E R S

The onglet, salt cod and lemon tart: three dishes that made a fan of Jess

You’ll find cuttlefish aplenty lurking amongst the seaweed-like pasta of this ragu

Bianchis, 1-3 York Road, Bristol BS6 5QB; 0117 329 4100; bianchisrestaurant.co.uk

white-linen clothed tables and smartly bound wine lists – but don’t expect the classic and traditional in every context. The traditionally formatted Italian menu (think antipasti, primi and secondi options) is infused with imagination, contemporary thinking and a little bit of fun. Back to lunch. I’m eating from the daytime set menu, which is solid value – two courses for £15, three for £19 and four for £24. (In the evening, no main tips over the £16 mark, either, with starters coming in at around £8.) The aforementioned pasta was preceded by soft and gently spiced salt cod and ’nduja fritelli, primed

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for scraping up the dollops of silky aioli, and to follow it arrives onglet. The hunks of beef sport dark crusts and bright claret interiors, and a whisper of smokiness deepens the flavour of this already delicious cut. It’s plated up with a punchy, vibrant salsa verde, supercrisp wedges of potato, nicely charred at the edges but still with fluffy insides, and spindly green beans. The front-of-house operation is sharp as a tack; while the food really is excellent – Ben acts as exec chef but heading up the kitchen here is Pegs Quinn, formerly of the famous River Café – it may, in fact, be the service (friendly and skilled in equal measure) that converts you into a regular. This style of hospitality is a special thing. If you’re not up for a full meal, the bar is lined with a couple of seats, and more high stools sit in a small window area. Cocktails are on the go, as is a carefully curated wine list – both of which are being taken advantage of by drinkers this lunchtime. In the main dining area, the atmosphere is buzzy; guests lean over to others’ tables to talk about the food, and Dom and general manager Magda zip around, making everyone feel like they’re in exactly the right spot in the world right now. I’m positive there is absolutely no way on this here earth that I can fit in dessert. Until I take my first bite of the burnt lemon tart. The velvety, zesty middle only just holds its shape on the plate – so lovely and loose it is – and the pastry crust is happily thin and crumbly. I book my next table on my way out.


COOL COUNT RY H OUSES

HOMEWOOD A short drive through the mizzle brought Matt Bielby to one of Bath’s more bijoux country house hotels, where fantasy design mingles with good honest cooking to winning effect

H

omewood Park used to be quite a dark, dreary place – albeit in a great location at the top of Freshford (surely one of Bath’s prettiest satellite villages) with great views across the valley – but no longer. Now part of Ian and Christa Taylor’s Kaleidoscope Collection, best known for central Bath hotels like No.15 Great Pulteney and The Bird, it’s been transformed. Out have gone some of the internal walls and half the name – now it’s just ‘Homewood’ – and in has come… well, just about everything. Part Georgian, part Victorian and with roots going back to the 13th century, Homewood’s of manageable size – an intimate, homely maze of corridors and stairways – but comes packed with almost intimidating levels of intriguing detail. There are 21 rooms, about 10 acres of grounds, and interior design quirks around every corner to make you smile. If you’ve ever been to No.15 or The Bird, you’ll recognise the style: you get giant topiary animals in the grounds – a giraffe, a dachshund, a teddy bear – while outdoor hot-tubs shelter under cone-shaped roofs covered in greenery, like magical wells from a fairy tale. Inside, you stumble across unexpected collections everywhere. There are endless clocks in the reception area, dozens of pottery dogs in the lounge, a forest of flower paintings in the bar. Some bedrooms feature spectacular 1920s Art Deco bureaus, and lighting seemingly stolen from the best suites on the SS Normandie, steaming from Le Havre to New York so its occupants could catch a train to the 1933 Chicago World’s Fair. Basically, you’ll be entertained by this place. It’s fun. The large, airy dining room – with folding doors allowing you to shut sections off for a more intimate space – has its fair share of oddities too. There’s a wall covered in mismatched blue-and-white Willow pattern plates, for instance, and the pot plants are more like potted trees. Above us, nine or ten closely clustered chandeliers float like a vast shoal of crystallised jellyfish. And food-wise, things are intriguing too. Executive head chef Jamie Forman, with a background at Michelin-starred country house hotels including Le

The lawns are lush, sure, but Homewood’s exterior only hints at the eccentricities within

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A F T E R S

Pid que vereiuntiis del modipiendae mos eum es volume eos adi undio.

Pumpkin gnocchi and the scallop starter: handsome dishes that live up to their good looks on the fork

Homewood, Abbey Lane, Freshford, Bath BA2 7TB; 01225 956285; homewoodbath.co.uk

Manoir aux Quat’Saisons, has been here six months or so and offers seasonal, no-nonsense British fare that’s big on flavour but has a few little quirks of its own. The main menu’s short enough to fit on one side of paper, but only just: there are six starters, six puds, eight mains and a handful of sides, with enough vegan and vegetarian options to keep everyone happy. If you were wanting to keep it plant-based, you might start with the Jerusalem artichoke soup with spiced crisps or twice-baked cheese soufflé, but feeling rather more carnivorous, we ended up with the beef bresaola with crispy mozzarella and salsa verde (£9) and ovenbaked scallops with old Winchester cheese and garlic butter (£12). The air-dried beef came in almost translucent muddy red strips, arranged in frilly piles alongside golden balls of deep-fried mozzarella with crisp, breadcrumbed outers and mild, milky tasting insides,

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nice and stringy where the cheese had melted. Dollops of punchy, coarsely textured salsa verde punctuated the mouthfuls of meat and cheese nicely, although still I caught the dish’s owner jealously eyeing up my juicy, unctuous-looking scallops. And well she might. These fellas – three of them, sitting in a scallop shell resting on a plate covered in flakey salt – were as good as they looked, beautifully cooked and supported by a bed of greens and cheese. Eating it was a bit of challenge, mind: cutting the shellfish tipped the shell so much that the delicious juice inevitably flowed onto the plate below, where – mixed with all that salt – it became a tad challenging. Not impossible to eat, then, but to get the most out of it was a bit like a Crystal Maze puzzle. Onto the mains: at £29.50 the rib-eye steak is a bit of a price outlier, with most dishes coming in at £20 or under in the forms of pan-roast cod, Parma hamwrapped chicken, grilled aubergine, roast sea bass, Creedy Carver duck, and our pair of highly autumnal choices. Opposite, the pumpkin gnocchi with roasted veg and goat’s cheese sauce (£17) – one of two veggie mains – was a pleasing pile of reds, yellows and oranges, rimmed with a base of green. For me, lamb rump arrived with fondant potato, hispi cabbage, beer onions and bacon (£19). We paired these – perhaps unnecessarily, as the regular portions are generous enough – with sides of rainbow carrots (£4.50) cooked with fennel seeds and honey, all rich reds and blacks, and seasonal mixed greens (£4) with garlic butter. The tender lamb itself came in small, thick slices lined up above a rectangle of potato and pile of the cabbage and bacon, everything sitting in a greenbrown lake of gravy and flanked by the onions; all very more-ish. The golden fried gnocchi had browned crusts, and amongst the yellow pillows were tiny, sweet tomatoes. Underneath hid cubes of roasted root veggies, all coated in a light and creamy goat’s cheese sauce. Vibrant green herb oil pooled around the lot, adding more moisture but also a zip of extra colour to what was an already exciting-looking plate. Puds weren’t necessary, but needs must: we swerved the local artisan cheese, lemon posset (something of a miracle, as I’m a slave to a lemon-based dessert), and such hardy perennials as chocolate fondant and sticky toffee pudding, in favour of warm homemade treacle tart with clotted cream (£8.50) and baked apple shortbread with Somerset cider brandy caramel (a quid less). The tart didn’t make much of an impression – it could have afforded to have been, well, more treacly – but the shortbread affair, while looking nothing like we’d expected, proved to be a pleasantly light finish to the meal, with smooth green sorbet, crunchy shortbread and cubes of jelly alongside the caramel-coloured baked fruit. All in all, then, this lunch was quite the success. Homewood is a fun location that’s not too far out of town, with views that work whether sunny or rainy. The front of house operation is solid and food imaginative and satisfying.


OL D F AV O U R IT ES R EB O R N

ROSEMARINO

One of Bristol’s best-loved, longest established Italians is having a bit of a refresh, finds a delighted Charlie Lyon Agnimusdam, optatquunt eveliti consedis aceari doluptus nihit fuga. As evellab ipidel eume reperovid

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A F T E R S

Bright colours hit you between the eyes: the courgette dish (far left) brings North African flavours to British veg

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a Gill Meller recipe, where you boil ham with parsley, thyme and bay, then use the deliciously salty ham water to cook the polenta.) Still, I’d say the Rosemarino chef has more than topped this. Here, the seasoned polenta has been set, cut into wedges, loaded with the richest of beef ragus, then baked like some extraordinary lasagne. The beef, which has surely been cooking away for hours in the kitchen, is rich with wine and rosemary, and sprinkled with salty, hard cheese. It’s a dish to go back for. The zucchine e alici (£6.50) balances it perfectly. A plate of lightly roasted courgettes, it’s lifted with tastes from the North African coast that the Sicilian chef loves to use – toasted almonds, salty anchovies, and fresh pomegranate. There’s a light char on the green veg, which has been slashed with criss-cross marks allowing all the flavour to seep into the courgette flesh. Breaded artichokes are hard to pass up, as is pickled beetroot salad, but under advice from co-founder and manager Sam Fryer, we try the arancini di porro (£6.50). Two huge golden-crumbed balls sit atop a bed of vibrant green leek mayo, oozy and delicious inside and rich with fried leek and taleggio. We skip antipasti, despite all the meats being cured on site. For mains, the special chalked onto the blackboard gets my attention: bigoli alla sarde (£15). It’s pasta heaven for me, thick strands with a salty-sweet sauce made of anchovies, shallots, raisins and pine nuts. Lightly fried whitebait – with just a light taste of the sea – sit on top, with parsley and pangrattato (light breadcrumbs) to add extra bite. JC laps up the Rosemarino amatriciana (£15), thick noodles of bucatini with tomato, ’nduja and goat’s cheese. It’s deliciously rich, so probably best served with a fresh salad as opposed to after three starters. Pudding comes in the form of a classic tiramisu with orange mascarpone (£7) and forta di ricotta (£6), the softest ricotta cheesecake, with grilled apricots, honey, pistachio and rich vanilla ice cream. Rosemarino has long been loved for its breakfasts, but now it’s upping its evening game to remind Bristol’s diners that its chefs put up a mean fight when it comes to dinners, too. This place has been trading for almost 10 years and, going by tonight’s experience, has another healthy 10 ahead of it.

K I R S T I E YO U N G

Rosemarino, 1 York Place, Bristol BS8 1AH; 0117 973 6677; rosemarino.co.uk

Y

ou can’t complain that the Bristol restaurant scene isn’t exciting, with new and innovative concepts opening almost weekly, it seems. But what makes it thrilling can also make it tough, even for the best-established restaurants. New foodie destinations such as Wapping Wharf and North Street have pulled the masses south-side, leaving gaffs in Clifton and on Whiteladies Road jostling for attention in the minds of diners and the food media alike. Perhaps this is why long-loved Bristol favourite Rosemarino is injecting some of its hard-earned turnover into a new collaboration with the Hyde and Co group, who are also behind the likes of The Ox and Bambalan. They’ve been working together on new menu ideas to keep things fresh, while a gradual refurbishment will go on in the background – the facade is already sporting a new olive green look. Indeed, the elegant York Street building looks most contemporary at the moment – thanks to a fresh and clean lick of paint – and when we made a recent visit on a Tuesday night, the city slick after a day of torrential rain, the place seemed reassuringly busy, with a mix of Clifton regulars and a handful of tourists. For those who haven’t already visited, this is a refined yet cosy space with rustic pine tables and pastel-coloured walls – effortlessly elegant, I’d say. Two floors mean that, even when busy, it still feels like an intimate space. The wine list meanders through Italy’s favourite vineyards, focussing on grapes you’re less likely to have heard of as well as regional favourites. Tonight, a glass of Grillo is cool and lively – the perfect accompaniment to our ensuing small plates. There’s an extensive Grappa list and a Vermouth and liquors section, as well as five Amari (digestive bitters) – those who like their oh-so-fashionable herbal flavours certainly won’t be disappointed. And what about that reconsidered menu? Well, the cicchetti (small plates) cover all bases, ranging from £3 for bread or olives to £7 for the polenta condita. And it’s the polenta that JC and I kick off with tonight. It’s not easy to flavour this bland, starchy staple perfectly, and many make it too rich with excess cream or butter. (The best way I’ve found to cook it is


L I T T L E

B L A C K

B O O K

AINE MORRIS

The CEO of Abergavenny Food Festival – and Bristol local – shares her favourite foodie haunts

abergavennyfoodfestival.com

KIRSTIE YOUNG

Quick pint? The Duke of York is just at the end of my road, but The Miner’s Arms lets me bring the dog... Cheeky cocktail? Late-night cocktails at Milk Thistle. Posh nosh? Little French, Freddy Bird’s new place in Westbury Park, is hard to beat at the moment. Favourite grocery shop? I’m a St Weburghs girl, so Popti and Beast for the bakery and brilliant meat counter. Best wine merchant? Corks on Cotham Hill has been my go-to wine shop since I moved to Bristol 10 years ago. Hidden gem? Jean’s Bistro on Gloucester Road for the best Thai food. One to watch? Bokman – the new no-reservation Korean on Nine Tree Hill. Expecting big things. With friends? Masa and Mezcal for great Mexican food and shots. With the family? Bar 44 in Clifton for the big sharing Sunday lunches. We’ve had some lovely family meals here, and the staff are great with the kids. Breakfast? Bakers and Co. Brilliant breakfasts generally, but their pastry and bread game is currently on point. Those pecan sticky buns are dreamy. Sunday lunch? The Cauldron does the best Sunday roasts, cooked over fire. Comfort food? When I’m sick or tired, I just want noodles and soup. Mayflower’s beef brisket ho-fun would be a strong contender for my last meal!  Something sweet? Mrs Potts Chocolate House for the chocolate tahini cookie sandwiches. Best atmosphere? Bianchis. It’s relaxed and informal, but with a vibrant, buzzy atmosphere. Most underrated? Sky Kong Kong – top-quality food, bargain basement prices. Super service? The team at Poco on Stokes Croft are consistently lovely.  On a budget? Sunday morning dim-sum from Water Sky. On the hit list? Still not been to Box-E or Seven Lucky Gods, so must get down to Wapping Wharf!

Quick! Now add this little lot to your contacts book... The Duke of York, Bristol BS2 9RS; 0117 941 3677 The Miner’s Arms, Bristol BS2 9YQ; dawkinsales.com Milk Thistle, Bristol BS1 1EB; milkthistlebristol.com Little French, Bristol BS6 7QB; littlefrench.co.uk Popti and Beast, Bristol BS2 9XW; poptiandbeast.co.uk Corks of Cotham, Bristol BS6 6JX; corksofbristol.com Jean’s Bistro, Bristol BS7 8TZ; jeans-bistro.co.uk Bokman, Bristol BS1 3SB; instagram.com/bokmanbristol Masa and Mezcal, Bristol BS1 3RD; masaandmezcal.co.uk Bar 44, Bristol BS8 4HG; bar44.co.uk Bakers and Co, Bristol BS7 8BG; bakersbristol.co.uk The Cauldron Restaurant, Bristol BS2 9XW; thecauldron.restaurant Mayflower, Bristol BS1 3LN; mayflowerbristol.com Mrs Potts Chocolate House, Bristol BS1 5JA; mrspottschocolatehouse.co.uk Bianchis, Bristol BS6 5QB; bianchisrestaurant.co.uk Sky Kong Kong, Bristol BS1 3LN; skykongkong.co.uk Poco Tapas Bar, Bristol BS2 8JP; pocotapasbar.com Water Sky, Bristol BS5 6XY; 0117 951 2888 Box-E, Bristol BS1 6WP; boxebristol.com Seven Lucky Gods, Bristol BS1 4RW; 7luckygods.com

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Crumbs Bath & Bristol - Issue 95  

Crumbs Bath & Bristol - Issue 95  

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