Newly promoted Michelin starred restaurant (2017) showing real class of cooking
I love history and find it fascinating putting it in to (a) modern context. During his reign, Henry VIII spent a fortune on elaborate banquets, and was renowned for his gastronomic excess – all to impress his subjects and as an obvious display of wealth and power. Indeed, Henry was so fond of his food that he insisted on suitable venues wherever he travelled around his domain. Well, the good news for 21st Century food lovers is that one of these venues, Great Fosters, has recently been awarded a Michelin star for their Tudor Room restaurant. Diners can now experience fine dining in this historic setting without, presumably, the other excesses associated with Henry VIII. This was a triumph of a meal and gave that warm, happy feeling to be there eating it.
Here, Douglas Balish (formerly of the 2 Michelin starred Whatley Manor) displayed a menu which, to me, frankly made it hard for me to believe how he was not awarded this star earlier. I was relieved to find out that there was not enough time in his first half year there to gain the necessary inspections.
The set lunch menu was outstanding value for all of the add on extras (which I do vehemently believe make a lot of difference) and from the moment I entered through the novel door in a door staff were present and at the ready to guide and host. I found the food elegant and carefully conceived showing technical skill in some cases not too out of place in some 2 Michelin starred venues I have been to. Much pleasure was gained from the fragrant amuse bouche with delicate beef skin, the clever pork main and the superb petit fours which all registered well on the Richter scale.
Above the very reasonable set menu price (see below) I thought an especially nice touch was the option to have cheese instead of a dessert within the set menu and a choice of 5 from a very comprehensive list that was also interesting to read. The truffled honey that went with was a triumph and frankly I could have just eaten this like soup with the lovely miniature spoon it came with.
A quality meal all round in a striking setting. I didn’t have a chance to look at the Greenhouses along the rear driveway but based on the set menu here, it is a definite marker in the sand to ensure going back to see the menu in full song another time.
Food Grade: 82%
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