If I were to ask you 12 months ago “where you think you might be next year?” what would you have said? I asked myself that question in April of 2020 and I assure you the answer was completely different to the reality of today. With the first 2 weeks of trading under our belts, the words “humbled” “overjoyed” and “exhausted” come to mind.
The response from you all so far has been unbelievable- that’s the reason we started this in the first place- that’s the drive behind the long hours on those cold February mornings. Knowing that eventually our lovely guests would arrive and enjoy what we’ve built makes those days of hard work quickly melt away…
We have been blessed with weather so far with the only real difficulty coming from making sure the red wine is at adequate temperature when it reaches the table. Never again will I take serving wine at room temperature for granted! The weather, while mostly bright sunny and forgiving, has meant some extremely cold evenings where blankets and heaters have been a savour. That’s right… heaters! We have certainly levelled up from last year – so if you’re a chilly Cuthbert ;) we got you covered.
When starting a new business you quickly realise the truth in the proverb ‘alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.' On that note, we have been fortunate to find some wonderful people to join our front and back of house teams- big thank you to them for their hard work so far!
Chef Sam has had a busy 3 weeks in the kitchen, already garnering some amazing feedback on the quality of his food – have a read of our first review from Ox in a Box Magazine… https://www.oxinabox.co.uk/review-room-with-a-view-why-the-scenic-supper-in-the- Cotswolds-will-take-your-breath-away We, as well as our guests, have adored our April menu- but one of our favourites has to be the English Rabbit With Glazed Carrot, Dill & Camomile Broth. Chef Sam has cooked over 130 rabbits for that dish- and showcasing two cuts of this underrated meat has been an an absolute joy to serve. We’ve always been so driven to culinarily educate our guests as well as entertain, so having the tender rabbit loin rolled and cooked in the water bath, juxtaposed by the flavoursome back legs (which are slow-cooked to perfection!), all served with a pot of Camomile broth which each guest can pour over themselves- has been a lesson and theatre all rolled into one. From the Vegetarian menu – the Charred Potato, Potato Purée, Morels & Tarragon has been my personal favourite. Chef Sam Sous Vies Jersey Royal potato, scoops out the contents and creates a potato-like risotto using cream, Double Gloucester cheese and tarragon. This gets placed back into the potato shell for charring and is served alongside potato puree and Morels (Mushrooms). This is no doubt a timely process but the end result is a masterclass in flavours and textures.
April has flown by like the start of 2021! Looking forward to next week we’ll be moving onto our May menu which will include delights such as….. · Heirloom Tomato, Buffalo Curd, Chive Blossom, Smoked Rapeseed · Lamb Tartar, Egg Yolk, Sourdough & Wild Nettles · Asparagus, Rhubarb, Jersey Royal & Butter Milk · Fillet of Beef, Lovage, Onion & Black Garlic · Tortellini, Double Gloucester, Lavender, Egg Yolk & Almond (V) · Purple Sprouting, Ash Goats & Cheese, Lovage & Black Garlic (V) · Cherry Parfait, Oats, Rosé Wine & Basil Chocolate
And…..For all of you waiting eagerly to see our June menu – the wait is finally over! Follow the link at the bottom of the article to see the full menu on our website Are you hungry yet?!
Moving away from the culinary side of things I’d like to chat about the mouth-watering beverages that have been served from our bar throughout April. We must begin with our English Wine producer! Woodchester Valley Vineyard is a family-owned boutique vineyard and winery in the South Cotswolds with three vineyard sites in and around Stroud. English wine has been a talking point for some years – only gaining international respect over the last decade. Our rich soils and cool climate can at times, be perfect for sparkling wine production. I could write an entire article on this lovely producer who is right on our doorstep- but I’ll skip to the good stuff that will leave you craving a glass of their bubbles…
Woodchester Valley, Reserve Cuveé, NV With its traditional Champagne blend of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Munier this English Sparkling beauty has so much to offer in the world of traditional champagne style and nouveau English charm. 24 months on lees (yeast cells that form during fermentation and add richness to the wine) gives a fuller more masculine style of bubbles that’s a joy to sip. The wine shows great complexity both aromatically and on the palate, expressing ripe red fruit and subtle red apple with great balance, a fine mousse and an excellent lingering finish. Order a glass (£9) or a bottle (£50) when you’re here!
Gorgeous Grenache, Thistledown Wines, South Australia, 2019 You’ll see on the wine menu that I label this grape as my favourite and that’s no word of a lie! I love Grenache! Its diversity as a grape is huge and becoming less unusual to see it as a single varietal. I love it because it’s not a one-trick pony! It can be full-bodied, high in alcohol or picked early enough can retain great acidity and sing about those bright cherry and raspberry notes instead of concentrated dark fruit characters. This wine is as straight forward as the country it comes from whilst being as friendly as the people that live there. If you ever wanted a wine that could metaphorically put its arms
around you, after you’ve had a long week, or join you on the couch for that Sunday afternoon film after your roast beef then this is the wine for you. Vinified in small batches using wild ferments, whole bunch inclusion, larger oak and no filtration or fining help define the delicious, energetic character of the wine. £7.90 / £34
Our star cocktail in April has been the Rhubarb & Ginger Gin Shrub (I could have made the name easier to say – try having 5 of them and then pronouncing it!) Shrubs usually fall into the Kombucha, probiotic, good bacteria, hipster category. If you’ve got a long beard, like plant-based food, drink craft beer, forage and love yoga then you’ll know what I’m talking about and you’ll know they’re delicious. It’s made by adding apple cider vinegar to a homemade rhubarb and ginger syrup, shaking with gin and lime juice before finishing with soda. Garnish with candied rhubarb and charred lime and you’re ready to have your palate refreshed! Why this is a “winner” of a cocktail is for me easy to see: it sings about the seasons and rhubarb is certainly in season. It balances sweetness and acidity perfectly which is something I always strive for in a cocktail – having the apple cider vinegar really adds something we don’t often experience in a drink. It’s also very thirst-quenching on a warm summers day. £9.50
Our culinary delights aren’t the only menus that change with the seasons… keep your eyes peeled for more mouth-watering creations coming from our King Stone Gin bar in the coming months.
Spring Harvest – 29th May 2021 Newly released The Scenic Supper Spring Time Celebration is available to book NOW! Follow the link below to experience this one-off night of springtime loveliness.
Until next time, thanks for reading
. Sam x