18th Feb 2011 - and my fourth visit to Linthwaite - this time for a surprise afternoon tea treat for a friend in need of some respite.
In all we spent a very relaxed four hours over an afternoon tea, sat on a large sofa with views out over Lake Windermere below and snow capped peaks in the distance.
To start - a delicious fruit compote served in a shot glass, followed by crustless finger sandwiches [all the usual suspects including the ubiquitous cucumber].
After that came the star of the show - the etagere stacked with house baking and patisserie.
The vanilla custard tartlet should come with a warning as it catches you out by instantly shattering on your tongue at the first bite, leaving your mouth bathed in a pool of creamy, crunchy ecstasy and your hand scrambling to catch any stray pastry that dares to head south. For me this little bundle of joy is absolute pinnacle of fine patisserie skill. Absolutely stunning. Never fails...
If chocolate overload is your vice, then the cube of ueber-dense rocky road with its glossy, thick slick of ganache [just in case there wasn't quite enough chocolate underneath !] will give most normal chocaholics a fix that will see them happy for a good 48 hours afterwards....
Also featured were mini lemon drizzle cakes - beautifully moist and light and two varieties of scones accompanied by clotted cream and damson jam.
If I were to nit-pick at this point, then it would be about deliberately leaving stones in the jam. I am not sure why this is - I don't think it's for flavour reasons and I personally don't need them there to convince me that the jam is homemade when the remaining texture tells me that anyway. Whilst we were warned up-front about their presence, the subsequent stone removal exercise did become somewhat sticky and unelegant. A minor point though.....in the grand scheme of very grand things.....
As usual, service was immaculate and attentive [yet unobstrusive] from entering into reception right up to leaving, even though we'd 'come in off the street' as it were and weren't actually staying at the hotel.
The ambience is one of calm, civility and elegance. Not a mobile phone to be heard [a hushed 'hooray'....!]. Once the sun had finally set for the day, out came a procession of tealights which were placed around the lounge we were sat in - adding even more to the intimate and relaxed atmosphere.
I think we could have quite happily stayed longer, had it not been for a 90 minute journey back down the M6 and the call of reality....
Mmmmmmhh......I wonder if that pastry chef is married......
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
27 February 2012
Wow. Beautifully written... you must be a wordsmith. May we quote you?
Report response as inappropriate
Thanks so much. Sorry about the stones. When we make the jam my wife makes me remove the stones. Some of the local homemade comes with stones......
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC