“What’s this we hear about a new restaurant opening called The Brasserie?” We’ve been getting this quite a lot recently, so let’s deal with the (chocolate coated) elephant in the room before we explore local food provenance!
We’ve recently re-launched our restaurant as The Brasserie at the Carlton, complete with its own website. In addition there are some menu changes for the new season and a programme of food promotions which includes Foodie Friday events.
The Brasserie is particularly looking forward to a special February event (Friday 28th), which ties in with this year’s Exmoor Food Fest. Diners are invited to make the most of the best quality Exmoor steak & wine for £17.50, with the farmer thrown in for free. And yes, you did read that correctly!
Before the rumours begin to swirl, the farmer in question is Chris Lerwill, one of the Brasserie’s key local suppliers. Now, more than ever before, serious diners are seeking food provenance of the restaurant dishes they eat, and with good reason. Not only does locally sourced food hit sustainability and ethical notes, it also comes with greatly enhanced taste- the-difference flavour.
Grass Fed Exmoor Beef
So Chris will be in the Brasserie to talk about the Exmoor Park beef on the plates of those taking advantage of this excellent Friday Foodie deal. Local food provenance doesn’t get more local than Exmoor National Park and the traditional cattle breeds which graze it. These traditional breeds, such as the magnificent Devon (Ruby) Reds are far more hardy than ‘farm cows’, able to survive outside in all weathers and subsist on rougher grazing.
Grass fed beef is of course the best meat that you can have on your plate and, in the case of cattle grazed on Exmoor, the environmental impact is minimal too. Working with the herd and managing sustainable animal husbandry may be a foodie trend now, but in effect it is just a throwback to deep rooted farming traditions. In the case of the Lerwill family, these Exmoor farming traditions extend right the way back to the 12th century.
After enjoying a beautiful cut of tender, succulent, marbled steak, Chris will explain to Foodie Friday diners exactly where the meat has come from and how his family manage the farm and produce beef in line with sustainable principles.
Local Food Provenance at The Brasserie
Having the farmer along to give his account of local food provenance is an important aspect of what The Brasserie at The Carlton is setting out to do. Aside from this special Foodie Friday focus on Exmoor beef, local provenance runs right the way through The Brasserie menu.
The term ‘brasserie’ is tied intrinsically with France and in French the word also means ‘brewery’. A traditional brasserie combines a bar and casual restaurant space where meals and snacks are served throughout the day. The Brasserie at The Carlton embodies this take on dining and serves breakfast, lunch and dinners in a beautiful space which has been completely updated in line with a £1.7M makeover for the hotel in recent years.
Starting with breakfast, the menu features local free range eggs and British bacon, taken from high welfare stock. Lunch and dinners feature locally sourced vegetables (from the Great Field of nearby village, Braunton) and herbs, alongside local cheeses, meat and fish, caught by North Devon fishermen, in the bay. Reflecting the original French brasserie concept, the restaurant is complemented by a well stocked bar including local craft brews.
Dietary Requirements? Mais Oui!
Where The Brasserie at the Carlton differs dramatically from most of its French counterparts is in the welcome absence of the Gallic ‘non’ when diners ask if there are options for vegetarians, vegans or those with gluten free or other special dietary needs! Chef/patron Eliot cooks menus from scratch and the kitchen will always adjust a dish to ensure it fulfils diners’ requirements.
To book a table for the Foodie Friday steak & wine event or make a reservation to just sample the Brasserie experience, call 01271 862446 or email email@example.com.
Ok, we’ll admit it, at The Carton we’re rather excited about February! It’s not everyone’s favourite time of the year, but this month we have three reasons to be cheerful: Exmoor Food Fest!
As lovers of fine food, how can we not get excited about this event? The 2020 edition will be even more special of course because this year The Carlton is getting involved for the first time too through our Ilfracombe Brasserie restaurant!
Exmoor Food Fest Background
This most excellent of foodie festivals, right on the doorstep in North Devon, is celebrating something of a milestone in 2020 as this will be the fifth Exmoor Food Fest. The event has earned a reputation for turning the spotlight on some of the region’s finest eateries, while at the same time giving foodies in the area, and from beyond, an added incentive to get out there for a taste of Exmoor!
This incentive comes in the form of the Exmoor Food Fest discounts which run for the month and expose the palate to some of the more sublime tastes the area has to offer. The Carlton Hotel, Ilfracombe, is proud to be joining in this festival of food and will be bringing its own special menu components to the party, along with a selection of exclusive Exmoor Food Fest deals.
Exmoor Food Fest 2020: Deal
For the duration of the event, The Brasserie (at The Carlton Hotel) is offering:
* 20% off of all starters, mains and desserts.
* A special £17.50 dinner menu (1) featuring two courses– available Thursday, Friday & Saturday.
* 15% off accommodation at The Carlton when booked direct
Let’s take a look behind the menu to see what makes the Ilfracombe Brasserie one of your must-eat stops on the 2020 Exmoor Food Fest tour…
Exmoor Food Fest and the Taste of Exmoor event coincides with the unveiling of The Brasserie. Open to non-residents since The Carlton was extensively refurbished three years ago, the Brasserie has been gaining enough plaudits of its own that the time has come to emerge from the shadows of the hotel and deliver as a stand-alone dining destination in Ilfracombe.
What sets it apart? From the early days, The Carlton has stamped its own distinctive style on the food it serves in its restaurant. The dishes are simple but that simplicity is worn as a badge of honour in the Ilfracombe Brasserie, as it is the food that does all the talking.
The Carlton calls itself a ‘Hotel with Provenance’ and a gaze through the suppliers‘ list tells you just how important local ingredients are for the kitchen team. Free-range eggs, locally caught fish, locally reared meat, seasonal vegetables, and ingredients all feature heavily on the menu.
The fish you will eat at The Brasserie, in Ilfracombe, will have been caught in the bay and landed by local fishing boats or, in the case of the plump tidal mussels on the menu, plucked from the bed of the Torridge, one of two arterial rivers which flow into the Atlantic via the North Devon coast.
Much of the meat that makes the plate in the Brasserie will have been Exmoor farmed (such as the pork), or at the very least come from a southwest farm with high welfare standards (as is the case with the beef and the lamb).
Meanwhile, the kitchen’s supply of staple vegetables comes from The Great Field, located in the nearby village of Braunton, which has been providing sustenance from its nutritious soil since the ninth century.
With such quality and consistency, simplicity in the kitchen means celebrating the authentic tastes and full flavours of these basic ingredients. While the provenance and local sourcing behind the Brasserie menu ensures the food talks for itself, the stylish layout and pleasant surroundings of the restaurant itself is another enticement to enjoy a wonderful evening (or lunchtime).
Also worth a mention is The Carlton’s reputation for non-fussy adjustments to menu items in order to accommodate diners with specific diets and allergies. You know how in some places such requests are received with a with a snooty nose in the air? Well not at The Brasserie, where it is the pleasure of the restaurant to do all it can to ensure that all guests in the restaurant party enjoy their meal.
So that’s the background, now it’s time to jump in and enjoy the Exmoor Food Fest! For more information about Carlton food menus or to book a table for the restaurant email us on firstname.lastname@example.org.