Over the past couple of years, I have learnt you do not always need to pay a fortune to enjoy Michelin Star food. Whilst it is a lovely experience to dine from a taster menu, it can get pricey especially once you add in drinks and service charge. Last year, I went to John’s House where you can enjoy lunch during the week from £30pp.
A couple of weeks back, Kev & I indulged in a Michelin Star lunch priced at £34.50 pp (2 courses) for our anniversary. Hambleton Hall offer a “Lunch for less” option Monday – Friday **(T&C’s apply).**
A bit about Hambleton Hall
Hambleton Hall has been around for 40 years. The hotel has 17 bedrooms and 1 restaurant, therefore, booking in advance is always recommended. They redecorate a room each year or the public areas to create something different and up to date for their guests. Attention to detail is clear throughout the hotel.
The gardens were spectacular and are constantly being tweaked and improved. There was not a weed in site on our visit. Everything looked on point.
In 2010 they opened the award-winning Hambleton Bakery. It has grown rapidly and provides bread to the hotel and surrounding areas including Leicester. If you ever come across their bakery or products make sure you have their cheese twist and ploughman’s parcel.
The hotel is one of the Relais & Chateaux group of independent hotels. ”Olivier Roellinger – Owner, Les Maisons de Bricourt, France quoted “Imagine Relais & Châteaux as a very fine French-style library of top-quality books each entitled In Honour of the Joys of Living.” This is the experience you will have at Hambleton Hall. It is also a Pride of Britain Hotels.
Hambleton Hall has maintained it’s Michelin star status since 1982 (the longest in the UK). Aaron Patterson, the Head Chef, has been there for 24 years of this. The food is seasonal to match what local produce is available. His daily menus are based on what comes through from the local farmers/foragers (you cannot get any fresher than that).
We had a warm welcome at the entrance to the hotel. The hostess took our details and led us to the dining room. Due to Covid19, some public areas are dedicated just for guests staying at the hotel.
The dining room had a lovely charm to it and was decorated with rich warm colours. You could see Rutland Water Nature Reserve from where we were sat. I can only imagine how amazing it would be on a sunny day.
Once seated, we were handed the drinks menu. Drinks start at £5.50. I went for a Spanish Passion and Kev had a local cider. The mocktail was made with fresh passion and each sip was refreshing and delicious. Kev really enjoyed his goblet of cider which tasted like apple juice (just how he likes it).
While our drinks were being prepared, we received personalised food menus. What an amazing touch to have…. and yes, everyone gets a personalised menu. I always think small details make the biggest difference and Hambleton Hall has ticked this box. The menu is a perfect memory to have.
We had complimentary amuse-bouche to start the meal. This got our taste buds going and our bellies ready for more.
Next, we had a selection of warm Hambleton bakery bread. Paired with the salted butter that was topped with seaweed, this went down a treat.
Sea Trout: The dish was beautifully presented and vibrant. Cured trout served with cauliflower, almond horseradish. The textures and flavours worked so well together.
Terrain of Root Vegetables: Served with a Jerusalem artichoke ice cream. The dish had a perfect consistency and tasted so fresh. The ice cream added a nice twist to it.
Slow-cooked Jacob’s Ladder served with caramelised onions and peppercorn sauce: The beef melted away with each mouthful. It came with spinach, mash potato, radish and carrots all cooked to perfection. Kev, who usually doesn’t like carrots said even they tasted nice.
Pan-fried fillet of Seabass: The fish was served with an array of lightly pickled vegetables and served with a crab miso broth. The textures and flavours worked well together and the dish was so filling.
However tempting the desserts sounded, we were absolutely full up. I didn’t even have space for a coffee. I say it is just an excuse to go back.
The dishes were all prepared with care and each dish tasted fresh. The ingredients were of a high standard too. It was clear why they have maintained their Michelin star for so long!
The service was exceptional throughout. Staff were attentive, taking all the correct measures to ensure they were socially distant and delivered their service with passion.
After lunch, the rain had stopped and we took a walk around the gardens. They were absolutely gorgeous. If I had not worn my heels we could have had a walk down to Rutland waters.
From the drive down the little road to the hotel, to leaving, the whole experience was memorable.
I cannot wait to return to Hambleton Hall. We will have to start saving the pounds because the rooms look spectacular and I would love a special staycation there in the summer. They have a little outdoor pool too overlooking the waters.