Cheshire Life Luncheon - Simon Radley at the Chester Grosvenor Hotel

PUBLISHED: 14:00 02 November 2015 | UPDATED: 20:16 07 June 2016

Muscovado cake, Iced bananas, soft ganache and salty caramel

Muscovado cake, Iced bananas, soft ganache and salty caramel


The beautiful flavours of autumn were celebrated at a sumptuous lunch at Simon Radley at the Chester Grosvenor, writes Janet Reeder

Exec Head Chef, Simon RadleyExec Head Chef, Simon Radley

A stunning autumnal day where sunshine dappled the blaze of yellows and reds of falling leaves is surely the best backdrop for a menu filled with the flavours of the season.

And the Cheshire Life luncheon at the Michelin starred Simon Radley restaurant at the Chester Grosvenor Hotel did not disappoint. Here was a menu that hinted at the smell of woodsmoke and apples without featuring either. It was a culinary tour de force designed by the uber talented Simon Radley. Surely a candidate for a second star?

The new general manager at the Grosvenor Richard Grove hints over a pre-luncheon glass of champagne and canapés that this is certainly a goal, as the five star hotel enters a new phase under the management of Bespoke Hotels.

However, recent change of personnel aside, those who adore the restaurant’s trademark excellent service, comfortable seating and starched linens will be delighted to learn that all is well.

Cabbage patch;  Saddle of Roe deer,  three brassicas,  spiced bread mousse and juniper jellyCabbage patch; Saddle of Roe deer, three brassicas, spiced bread mousse and juniper jelly

Sipping glasses of chilled 2012 Domaine De Valent Chardonnay - thankfully nothing like the heavy oaky headache in a glass that some of us grew to love to hate in the ‘90s - we were served with a warmed selection of freshly baked bread - another trademark of a meal at the Grosvenor.

Ah, which to choose? A delicious Bavarian rye? Light as air flatbread? I’d have been happy to taste them all.

Trumpets should have sounded as the first course, Crown Prince made a majestic entrance. Creamed and charred pumpkins, crispy chicken wing and native lobster prettily adorned with edible flowers were a marriage made in food heaven. There followed Cabbage Patch: a robustly pink saddle of roe deer served with three brassicas, a deliciously charred to sweetness cabbage, the most fruitily unctuous red cabbage ever to adorn an autumn table and delightful cabbage parcels. There was spiced bread mousse and juniper jelly to pack more flavour. The perfect accompaniment was a glass of 2013 Santa Rica, Gran Hacienda, Cabernet Franc from Chile. To finish we feasted on Muscovado cake, a dark rich treacly concoction that wasn’t really the main event. It was the soft silky ganache and salty caramel served with iced bananas that really took this pudding to another level.

Tea and coffee were served along with divine salted caramels from the Rococo chocolatier which is part of the Grosvenor. They were so good I popped into the shop and bought a selection of chocolates to take home.

Latest from the Cheshire