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“Warm and welcoming”

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Brook House Inn and Restaurant
Ranked #7 of 10 Eskdale B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 30 September 2013

Staying in Boot for a few days' walking there were several pubs offering food for us to choose from. A quick foray into The Woolpack for a pint after a day on the hills suggested somewhere with pretensions (notices advertising champagne by the bottle, a menu boasting 'from farm to fork' or something similar) but which proved inhospitable with surly staff and tables set out canteen style in front of a large TV screen. A pity, as the menu actually looked quite interesting. Instead we opted to eat at Brook House Inn on all 3 evenings of our trip which had the added advantage of being nearer to our accommodation at The Chalets, only half a mile away.

Walking into Brook House was an altogether different experience from the one mentioned above. It's an old-fashioned place (good!) with several interlinking rooms - bar, snug and restaurant - in which you eat from the same menu. There's a good selection of Northern beers, all well-kept and changed regularly and self-evidently the pride of the landlady. Epitomising this was our experience on the first evening when half-way through our meal a fresh round of drinks arrived at the table only for the landlady to appear and whisk one of them away, saying she was unhappy with it. (My friend had actually tasted it and pronounced it excellent.) A short while later she returned with a fresh drink from a new barrel.

Others working on the bar or serving food were equally friendly and delightful. Our young waitress went back and forth to the kitchen checking out ingredients in various dishes because of our cumulative allergies and food preferences. Another night, a waiter seemed able to have fresh drinks at our table almost without waiting, despite the numbers drinking in the bar.

This is definitely somewhere catering for hearty appetites. Portions were large and though it was recognisably 'plain cooking' the food was good: the 'specials' did change from one evening to another and the vegetables were fresh and not over-cooked. Between the three of us (over 3 nights I hasten to add) we sampled the beef in beer pie, the 'cradle' of pink lamb in a berry sauce, the huge slab of braised belly pork topped with black pudding, the chicken ballotine with a mushroom stuffing and the feta and spinach pie: not a duff plate among them. The hearty portions meant that we didn't attempt any starters although many of them looked very appealing. Puddings were equally traditional and robust - a good damson pie, accompanied by a warning about the stones; a really light plum sponge; blackcurrant pie; raspberries and meringue; a mountain of chocolate ice-cream served with shortbread.

Saturday night was very busy and booking clearly advisable but mid-September the tourist season was more or less at an end and there were plenty of spare tables on other nights. This is not a 'destination' restaurant in the generally understood sense of the word but when you're spending the day walking on the Lakeland fells it is reassuring to know that you won't have to drive miles to get a decent meal. Actually, the food here is considerably better than you will find in the vast majority of pubs in Keswick, Ambleside and Windermere. If you're staying in or anywhere near Eskdale, which is one of the more isolated parts of the Lake District, I can recommend Brook House Inn wholeheartedly.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with friends
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2  Thank LaDolceVita27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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116 - 122 of 208 reviews

Reviewed 27 September 2013

Somewhere in a parallel universe there are four people in a two-ton classic Mercedes S-Class that failed to make one of the hairpin gradients of the Wrynose and Hardknott passes and rolled backwards to the bottom of a Cumbrian hillside.

Not this time though. With survived with sweaty palms and arrived at our Eskdale guest house in time to book into Brook House for dinner.

Good job too. It filled up fast. Everyone's frayed nerves were mellowed at the bar before we got down to ordering the meal we thought we would never make it over the passes to enjoy.

My grilled goats cheese rarebit with beetroot chutney, rocket and Eskdale relish was a great way into a main course of chicken ballantine wrapped in bacon with mushroom stuffing, whisky and mustard sauce, sauté potatoes and root vegetable puree. But my wife's seafood medley with crème Béarnaise almost made me wish I'd gone with the fish.

This hotel and inn has a great atmosphere too ... but next time I'll come the long way round!

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with family
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Thank Graham K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 September 2013

This was our second visit to Eskdale and once again we ate out every evening at Brook House and yet again we couldn't fault it. This family run establishment never fails to deliver delicious food and good service. A warm friendly welcome always awaited us and nothing was too much trouble for any of the staff no matter how busy they were . The menu is very accommodating for all tastes and the special board just adds to the difficult but pleasurable task of choosing what to order. We highly recommend a visit and guarantee you won't be disappointed. We look forward to our next visit and although the weather was not very kind to us , Brook House was extremely kind, many thanks !

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank NorthWalesSmiley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 September 2013

Stayed locally for a week and dined here every evening. The ambience is relaxed and friendly, the warmest welcome awaits. Food is locally sourced and cooked and presented to the highest standard, daily specials compliment an already full menu, I can highly recommend the Ballantine chicken, scallops, mushroom fettuccini, beef and beer pie, meringues, pannacotta and cheese board. For lunch, the soups are always fresh and delicious as are the salads, or why not stop by for afternoon tea. With a good range of local beers and over 175 whiskeys as well as an excellent range of wines, you are spoilt for choice. The fact that this is a family run inn is very noticeable in the personal attention to detail and smooth running. There are 3 dining areas, the bar (full of character/s and the hub of the inn) the snug, smaller, more intimate just off from the bar and the restaurant. If dining with dogs, the bar is the area for you. Booking a table is essential, even mid week as it can get very busy. Views are stunning. Good sized car park. Very short walk (less than 5 minutes) from the lal ratty terminus if you are travelling by the steam train. Superb walks in the local area followed by an hour or two at the brook house cannot be beaten.

Room Tip: didn't stay but I am sure the rooms will be lovely
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  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Amanda L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 September 2013

We stayed in Eskdale for just a week but returned to Brook Inn more than any other place to eat. Food is locally sourced and delicious. It has a lovely friendly atmosphere with high quality service. Would definitely recommend to all!

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank Lyn073
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 August 2013

Visited this lovely pub/restaurant on 17th August as part of a celebratory trip away, whilst staying at nearby Irton Hall.

A varied menu with something to suit everybody's taste. I chose my main from the Specials Board - an enormous crab salad which I could not possibly get through in one go (so staff kindly wrapped it up to take away with me). There were 9 in our party and everybody was more than pleased with their meal - forget 'pub grub' this was definitely superior restaurant level!

All our courses were served quickly and together (no having to hold back to eat whilst someone's waiting on their food), staff were friendly and helpful and nothing was too much trouble. My family had arranged for a birthday cake to be presented to me after we'd finished our meal, so I was treated to the lights going out, a cake with lit candles (thank goodness they didn't put the full amount on!) and staff and other diners joining in singing the traditional 'Happy Birthday To You' along with my family.

A really enjoyable evening out and I can highly recommend the food and service!

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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Thank MaggiePlym
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 August 2013

This was our 10th visit in as many years. As always we were extremely well looked after, good, wholesome food, cheerful, friendly and efficient staff. The inn is located perfectly for a wide variety of walks. The beauty of Eskdale and the Brook House Inn combined to give us a fantastic break. We will be back!!

Room Tip: Why would we let others in on our secret? Go there and find out.
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  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Elizabeth E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Brook House Inn and Restaurant

Address: Boot, Eskdale CA19 1TG, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Cumbria > Lake District > Eskdale
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 10 B&Bs / Inns in Eskdale
Price Range: £83 - £99 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Brook House Inn and Restaurant 4*
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Brook House Inn offers an ideal base from which to explore the many contrasts of the Lake District. Family owned country Inn and restaurant serving imaginative food, real ales and over 170 malt whiskies. AA 4* Inn Award winning food and beer, West Cumbria Camra pub of the year 2010. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Brook House Inn And Restaurant Hotel Eskdale
Brook House Inn And Restaurant Eskdale, Lake District, Cumbria

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