We visited the lovely Gilpin Hotel & Lake House to celebrate our 20th Wedding Anniversary, set in the Lake District, Lake Windermere.
Situated off beat, this is a beautifully modern boutique hotel which boasts a Michelin Star in house Restaurant.
I was pleasantly impressed by its friendly reception staff who were prepared for us (we had arrived early by 2 hrs), we were kindly informed that our room was, in fact ready for us. This was a pleasant welcome after our journey in such a hot July Summers’ day.
We were shown to our room after a whistle stop tour of the hotel itself; the bar, restaurant and outside area. The hotel also has an Indian inspired restaurant attached to it which was pointed out too.
The decor is classically beautiful; checked carpets, plush soft furnishings, wing-backed chairs and exquisite flower displays all add to the boutique feel. You could easily be mistaken that you are in a London Hotel.
We had booked one of the 25 rooms within the hotel; a Junior Suite named Buttermere.
The Junior Suite comprised of a large bed, bathroom with both a shower and a Jacuzzi bath, and a small seated area with double doors leading to a private seated area. There were two chairs and a garden table to sit at to admire the beautiful 21 acres in which the hotel is set. Did I mention the Alpaca’s ! Yes, Alpaca were in the field and we could see them from our room.
The room wasn’t very big but it was beautifully serene, I think if you are searching for an idyllic getaway from the hassles of every day The Gilpin is definitely the place to stay, understated elegance; not pretentious. The staff are discreet, helpful and always pleasant; not irritating like some places we have stayed. You are truly made to feel welcome and at ease.
We had a quick lunch at the Gilpin Spice.
We were not really feeling vey hungry but wanted something small before we ventured into Windermere.
For this, we went to the the laid-back Gilpin Spice which has an open kitchen serving tapas-style pan-Asian dishes inspired by countries along the spice trail – spanning the Philippines, the Indian sub-continent, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Japan and China.
We had the flatbreads- these were actually Pitta breads with various toppings. My husband opted for the Duck, whilst I had the equally tasty (and small) flatbread with 3 ‘dips’ or chutneys.
If I’m honest I expected the portions to be a little larger, however I had to remind myself that it was Tapas-style so we should have ordered 2 dishes each. If you take this approach it is plentiful.
I think next time we will have a main meal here to really get a feel for the food.
In the evening, we had pre booked our table at the Michelin starred HRiSHi, Hrishikesh Desai which combines great Lake District produce and classic methods to deliver unbelievable textures and flavours – modern British cuisine with a twist.
We came down for dinner at 7.30 to be met with a lovely waiter who wished us a Happy Anniversary as did everyone else we met! It was lovely touch and makes the Hotel feel personal and that they really care. I liked it.
We were offered drinks and canapes. They had gone to great lengths to ensure there was a vegetarian option for me and the waiter ensured I was told which was which. They explained that the vegetarian options will be sent out on a different plate to ensure there was no confusion. For once I did not feel like I was the irritating veggie instead I felt unique and special.
We were given the menu to look a which again had a separate Veg set menu – no detail was left to chance.
We made our choices and the waiter took our order before we were escorted to our table which was in one of the three intimate dining areas.
We had bread to nibble; small loaves all freshly baked with local butter. Malt bread and a white. Followed by an amuse bouche which we were not expecting. I m sorry to say this was the only course we both did not enjoy, only because neither if us like celeriac and that was exactly what it was!
The Starters promptly followed
LOCH DUART SALMON for him and Cauliflower 3 Ways
LUNE VALLEY LAMB for him and MORECAMBE STONE BASS
An amuse bouche
Dessert was probably the best course of all. I thought everything chocolate is what we selected and all I can say is that it was the best we have had in years. The ratio of chocolate to fruits and ice cream was just enough to ensure you could taste every element ; nothing was over powering- it was perfectly balanced.
TRINIEA 70% DARK CHOCOLATE AND STRAWBERRIES
Dark chocolate delice, lime leaf panna cotta, strawberry ‘3 ways’, crushed honeycomb,
Malabar black pepper meringue, Verjus jelly, lemon balm
TRINIEA WHITE CHOCOLATE
White chocolate parfait set on a fluffy cake, slow roast white chocolate ‘Namelaka’,
carrot and cardamom compote, salted caramel tuille, dark chocolate sorbet
I can truly say that his was one of the most romantic and memorable meals we have had and it waste best place to celebrate our 20 th Wedding Anniversary.
The Gilpin & Lake House