As a member of Cotswold Taste, I was invited to lunch at The Painswick Hotel.
I have been familiar with The Painswick since its inception by the renowned hotelier, Somerset Moore. Interestingly, Somerset served his hospitality apprenticeship at The Lygon Arms, Broadway, where I was General Manager until 2003.
I had never visited the hotel until a couple of weeks ago. The Painswick is now part of The Calcot Collection. It’s in the most beautiful of settings in The Cotswolds. Painswick itself is a stunning, historic town with some fascinating architecture and The Rococo Gardens and is well worth a visit.
The initial aspect of the hotel is the absolutely breathtaking view of The Slad Valley, made famous by Laurie Lee’s Cider with Rosie.
Thirst quenching mocktails were served in the garden and we were able to take in the mesmerising view. This was followed by the most delicious lunch. To be honest it was some of the best food I have had in a while.
The menu has been devised by the recently appointed Head Chef, Jamie McCallum. Jamie has developed a unique and intriguing style of cooking and I was fascinated to discover his motivation. He has an eclectic experience in the industry, having worked at Waitrose Cookery School, Flying Fish Seafoods and Wild Honey, a Michelin starred restaurant in London.
Head Chef, Jamie McCallum
I asked Jamie what had influenced his distinctive style. Working in Australia, London and a personal passion for new dining experiences have been key influences. I’m also impressed by Jamie’s determination to recognise seasonality not only with the local ingredients he uses but also reflecting seasonal influences with regard to his style of cooking. Jamie is an enthusiast for locality and purchases from local butchers, smokeries and fruit and vegetable suppliers. His fish is all sourced, fresh from where it is best produced. The menu changes daily to reflect the best quality and market availability for his products.
The menu on our visit:
Isle of Wight Tomatoes, burrata, gremolata, green olives, sourdough
Sea Bream Carpaccio, avocado, coriander, white peach, almonds
Cornish monkfish, coco beans, young beetroot, cauliflower, chicken, vinaigrette
Cotswold Lamb – rack & breast, artichoke, peas and broad beans, king oyster mushrooms
Oak church farm strawberries, sorbet, avocado, lime
Custard tart, pine nuts, golden raisins & brown butter
Makes me hungry just talking about it! There was not a single disappointment but having the custard tart was a truly exceptional end to the lunch. Oh nearly forgot – Jamie makes his own sourdough. To go with lunch, we were given some great focaccia.
You just have to visit this beautiful place!
More interesting experiences coming soon!