A Tour of the Taste District

From food festivals to farmers markets, fine dining to hearty pub fayre, the Lake District offers the cream of the crop. So however you want to enjoy your 3 square meals (plus elevenses and afternoon tea), there’s something to tempt your tastebuds in the Lakes.

It’s interesting to reflect on why there is such an array of choice and flavour concentrated in this region, and why Cumbria is developing a heavyweight reputation for its culinary endeavours. What’s changed? What’s new?

Clearly there are always new and innovative chefs that make names for themselves with outstanding menus and new techniques, and as dedicated diners, we all love to flock to experience the thrill of the new. But that’s not enough to explain the breadth of choice on offer here. From artisan bakers, independent coffee roasters and chocolatiers to spice specialists and award winning cheese makers, every part of the eating experience is savoured, celebrated and produced with passion.

Perhaps its because regional values haven’t changed that we now find Cumbria so firmly in the foody spotlight. The principles of: reduced food miles and local supplier relationships; minimal processes, natural spices and organic diets; aren’t newly discovered philosophies - they are hard wired into the local culture.

If you take a look at the menus from some of the regions successful hotels and restaurants, you’ll see values that are universally echoed.

Sharrow Bay sum it up perfectly. “We’ve been using the best of fresh local produce, the most knowledgeable and dedicated local suppliers, and the bounty of our lakeshore gardens, (including the walled kitchen garden and glasshouses), since the very beginning in 1948. We didn’t realise they were ‘trends’, as to us they are the basic ethos of our food and hospitality.”

The outstanding restaurants at Gilpin Lodge are inspired by the local traditions from when Cumbria was part of the Spice Trade. Local specialities which have long included exotic spices such as Cumberland sausage, potted shrimps, Grasmere gingerbread, and of course, sticky toffee pudding are celebrated and given modern twists.

The stunning Armathwaite Hall with its breathtaking views of the lake proudly explain that their Chef takes full advantage of a wealth of local seasonal produce and Cumbrian specialties.

So why not plan your own tour the taste district today? Search here to find special offers that won’t stretch the purse strings …. We make no promises about stretching the waistline.

The Lake District Foundation

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