Review of L'Enclume
L'Enclume is an innovative restaurant in the Lake District of the United Kingdom. I first read of it in this article. It sounded interesting and I added it to my todo list.
If location, location, location is the secret of business success L'enclume have really made things hard for themselves; as you can see from the map. It is not easy to get to Cartmel, and not easy to find L'enclume when you get to Cartmel.
Cartmel is a small agricultural village. It is an attractive place but it has four public houses so I assume it is largely inhabited by alcoholics. When you arrive in the village square go through the archway of the priory gatehouse and drive down a narrow lane. L'enclume is on the right, close to the Priory [1190-1220]. L'enclume means 'The Anvil' and I believe the building was once a blacksmiths shop.
The menu offered three choices. A conventional three course meal for £39.50, a nine course meal for £50 and a fourteen course meal for £75. Most of that night's diners opted for the nine course meal.
The 26 course menu described in the article above was not on offer. A few of the courses in that menu appeared in the nine course menu.
I found the nine course menu very filling. The restaurant had what looked like a very good cheese board as an optional tenth course but I was too full, though I did manage the excellent petit fours and coffee.
How was the food? Well, it was superb. I have rarely had such an interesting and enjoyable meal and I would unhesitatingly recommend L'enclume. The service was also very good. The three waiters were all young and French, and knew their trade. I suppose it would be very difficult to find anybody locally who could work to the necessary standard.
L'enclume is a restaurant with rooms. On the night that I dined there most of the people in the restaurant were also staying overnight. My room was small but well furnished and equipped, and had a view of the Priory. BTW the Priory is worth a visit before you leave Cartmel.
L'enclume has a web site but it really does not do the place justice. It is long on style but short on information and needs to add many more photographs and emphasis the quality of Simon Rogan's food. If I had just had the website to go on I would never have bothered to visit. It was this article, and these other reviews [one, two ]which made me decide to visit.
See later post