Just had lunch At Eckington Manor with a friend yesterday, and both came away huge fans and planning to return, They have only recently started lunch (Thursday-Saturday) having previously just been open evenings and Sunday lunch, which is not my favourite meal. The setting is gorgeous, the hotel estate a perfect cross of contemporary (the dining room, kitchen and cookery school are in a converted dutch barn across the courtyard from the medieval main hotel building). The rapid fixe menu was perfect, and we both struggled a little to narrow down our selections. Everything we ate was beautifully prepared and presented, and delicious. It's fancy food and the portions are perfectly pitched for a multi course meal. Val had a chicken terrine with some delicate pickled vegetables (more than a garnish, but not too much) followed by a fat loin of hake. I had the creamy soup (was it cauliflower?) with a single largish tortellini in it followed by lamb shoulder with just enough portions of delicate mash and broccoli with some lovely purees - thankfully, not just smears (if it's good enough to be served on your plate there needs to be enough to actually eat). We had been unsure we'd be up for puds, but managed a very rich salted caramel tart with milk ice cream and a dainty slice of baked custard on the lightest of pastry bases, with a tart rhubarb sorbet and confit rhubarb. The service was outstanding, too. And the views from the 1st floor dining room across the Worcestershire countryside were just lovely. Altogether, I can't recommend this highly enough. My experience has been long waiting lists to get a table for the more established Sunday lunch service, and I urge everyone to get there for what must be a more interesting and diverse menu on other days.
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