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Where to Eat in the Lake District – a food and dining guide

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The ravishing Lake District countryside has entranced adventurers, poets, artists, and just about everyone else lucky enough to set foot in the region. This dramatic emerald haven also boasts some of the UK’s most distinct and refined dining establishments. With access to top-of-the-range local produce, you’ll find fresh English fare at its very best, whether you’re tucking into a juicy cut of venison or a soft and salty fillet of bream.
Typical dishes

 

 

If you’re a fan of game, the Lake District is the place for you. The sprawling fields, forests, and hills yield succulent, earthy-flavoured meat that won't be forgotten in a hurry.

Windermere

 

Resting near the edge of Britain’s largest natural lake, Windermere is an attractive centre well stocked with first-rate seasonal seafood. At the heart of this you’ll find Hooked, a bold bistro adored by locals and serving succulent fish dishes with Mediterranean, Asian, and Australasian influences. Perched on a hillside less than 10 minutes’ drive from Windermere is Holbeck Ghyll, a grand 19th century hunting lodge serving dinner delights with Michelin panache. Expect tians of crab, pressings of guinea fowl, and perfectly pink venison.

 

• Hooked, Ellerthwaite Square, Windermere LA23 1DP; Tel: +44 (0) 15394 48443

Holbeck Ghyll, Holbeck Lane, Windermere LA23 1LU; Tel: +44 (0) 15394 32375

 

Ambleside

 

Ambleside village boasts plenty of enticing establishments where you can stop for a tasty bite. At the culinary workshop Atelier the team have made a name for themselves with clever re-imaginings of classic recipes served in a welcoming environment. A short drive outside Ambleside is where you can find a veritable gem in the Drunken Duck – an ethically conscious foodie’s heaven operating with its very own microbrewery. Nestled on a wooded hill above the village, it’s well worth a visit if only for the sweet aroma of the chef’s famous cherry-glazed roast duck.

 

• Atelier, Lake Road, Ambleside LA22 0AD; Tel: +44 (0) 15394 31156

The Drunken Duck Inn, Barngates, Ambleside LA22 0NG; Tel: +44 (0) 15394 36347

 

Grasmere

 

Known for Wordsworth’s whitewashed Dove Cottage, Grasmere is a popular tourist destination so, as you’d expect, lunch and dinner spots are plentiful. The Jumble Room is an eccentrically designed restaurant with a varied menu to match. Whether you’re indulging in a plate of fresh crab risotto or sinking your teeth into a tail of Chinese-spiced monkfish, you can expect an artistic ambience and jazzy soundtrack. Greens Café and Bistro offers delicious lunches, a tempting selection of cakes, and an affordable and impressive dinner menu.

 

• The Jumble Room, Langdale Road, Grasmere LA22 9SU; Tel: +44 (0) 15394 35188

Greens Café and Bistro, College Street, Grasmere LA22 9SZ; Tel: +44 (0) 1539 435790

 

Coniston

 

Coniston Water is a popular boating lake about half a mile from Coniston village. After an afternoon on the water, or cycling in the shadow of the Old Man of Coniston, you can rejuvenate in any of the village’s many pubs and restaurants. The Green Housekeeper Café is a traditional and cosy nook offering light bites, as well as heartier dishes, and hosts a regular supper club. The Wilson Arms is a quaint country inn that takes pride in sourcing its ingredients from the best local farms and suppliers, offering wholesome portions of prime steak, locally made Cumberland sausages, and tempting vegetarian options.

 

• The Green Housekeeper, 16 Yewdale Road, Coniston LA21 8DF; Tel: +44 (0) 1539 441925

The Wilson Arms, Trover, Coniston LA21 8BB; Tel: +44 (0) 1539 441237