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Driving into this pleasant but utterly nondescript village by the Humber in North Lincolnshire, the existence of Winteringham Fields lifts the soul like when you hit upon these types of restaurants in rural France. The place is not actually set amongst fields, like I'd imagined, and is not at all grandiose. But it oozes the right values and old fashioned comfort and charm and both our meal and our stay (plus breakfast) were a pleasure.

 

WF lost its second star with a change of ownership about a year ago although the Head Chef now was the Head Chef then to all intents and purposes-he just didn't have the title.

 

Fahro doesn't always wax lyrical about the food in these restaurants, but an unusual starter of Beetroot Gazpacho (a sorbet actually) with Iberian Ham, rocket and olive oil had her wowing and chirruping, and this continued with her Rump of new Season Lamb, which was succulent, rich-full of flavour.

 

My Five Spiced Duck Breast starter was good but the highlight was a main of Suckling Pig, Black Pudding, Peach and Apple Compote and Pomme Bearnie, all lifted by a wonderful bottle of 2001 Chambolle Musigny (I'm beginning to appreciate this village) from Dujac which for a reason I couldn't quite fathom I was offered for a lot less than the regular asking price. We shared an Assiette of Desserts which was plenty for two.

 

This meal knew its strengths and the flavours on the plate had been thought through. Nothing jarred and every dish made sense. Some might consider that the food lacks a degree of culinary ambition, but harmony and symmetry trumps flashiness and experimentation here and given the all round professionalism and comfort I firmly believe it deserves its second star back.

 

PS: "Continental Breakfast" the next morning saw breads, pastries, croissants, lemon curd, jams and marmalades all made in the restaurant kitchen, along with freshly picked strawberries and fresh poached peaches and raspberries and freshly squeezed orange juice. A real treat of a breakfast. A cooked breakfast costs but it might be the one place where this usual abomination of a meal (Blacksmith's Arms in Westow apart of course ) is worth paying for.

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What a nice review :blush: Almost makes it sound worth a special trip, although I can't remember ever visiting that part of these islands. Once upon a time I might have discovered North Lincs on my way to Newcastle, but these days I usually get a train :P

 

That breakfast sounds particularly delightful. It's disappointing that so many high-class and good quality hotles appear to believe that breakfast starts and ends with table linen and a heavily laden buffet table :P They find nothing anomalous about using frozen kipper fillets and tinned orange juice and Wonderloaf bread, things which they would never dream of using for their "proper" meals in their "proper" restaurant. And yet the additional cost of good food at breakfast is minuscule.

 

I suspect the real reason is what I observed at the Tregea Hotel in Padstow. Basildog was running their restaurant for dinner, but they continued to employ this old guy (who had been working there for years) to do breakfast. Frankly, uit was shit. He was probably a plumber or a roadsweeper by trade, because he had as much idea about food as a gnat. The ingredients were what he ate at home, I guess, and if it was good enough for him ... So the problem with hotels and breakfast is that they think of it as unimportant, and they put cheap unimportant staff on shift to do it.

 

The dinner you had sounds really good, and it's nice to know that you found somewhere that has successfully balanced the proven traditions of cuisine with a modicum of inventiveness.

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He was probably a plumber or a roadsweeper by trade, because he had as much idea about food as a gnat. The ingredients were what he ate at home, I guess, and if it was good enough for him ... So the problem with hotels and breakfast is that they think of it as unimportant, and they put cheap unimportant staff on shift to do it.

 

 

 

My dear Macrosan. Are you implying that plumbers and roadsweepers by definition know nothing about good food? :P I regard that as a classist remark and I am considering reporting you to the moderator....er....you! Yes, that's it. I will report you to you and I expect you to take action against you immediately! :blush:

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