Overlooking the Great Hall at the historic Boringdon Hall Hotel near Plymouth you’ll find the intimate and sophisticatedly romantic Àclèaf; a space to gather around the table and taste exquisite menus created by Head Chef Scott Paton. Recently awarded AA 4 Rosette status, and rightly so, this hidden gastronomy gem is worth seeking out.
A 3-ish hour jaunt on a good day from London, Boringdon Hall is a super place to stay for a long weekend with the delights of the Devon countryside, coastline and Dartmoor on your doorstep and a super spa to enjoy.
The restaurant is small and intimate and has views over what might have been a minstrels’ gallery in the Great Hall down to the lounge and bar below. It’s gently lit, peaceful and refreshingly free of the superfluous décor fripperies many restaurants favour. Here the focus is firmly on the food.
Incredibly talented chef, Scott Paton uses only the finest locally sourced ingredients for his elegantly presented dishes. You can enjoy Àclèaf’s signature four-course menu with paired wine flights, or as we did, their rather fabulous 6-course tasting menu with wine pairings.
Settling down we were warmly welcomed with a glass of delectable Gusbourne Pinot Noir, before an eye-catchingly pretty array of canapes arrived.
These packed-with-flavour morsels included a goats’ cheese mousse ball with a tasty truffle glaze and gold leaf decoration, as well as a game donut topped with sticky-sweet sauce. They were almost too pretty to eat – but were so moreish they didn’t last long!
We delighted in scallops with champagne and fermented grape paired with Gavi di Gavi, La Minaia, Nicola Bergaglio, followed by curry and mango crab with Gewurztraminer, Trimbach. Turbot with lemon and brassicas paired with Bollinger was savoured before Iberico, walnut and waldorf with Amarone
Della, Valpolicella, Zonin. And then butter soft Wagyu, truffle and morels paired with a fine Margaux, and chocolate, itakuja and passionfruit with an Orange Muscat from Essencia.
It’s so rare to find such sophisticated yet simple and delicious dining like this outside of London. It would be no surprise at all to see this talented chef earn a Michelin star. We wouldn’t hesitate to return. Six courses £140 pp, with wine pairing add £80pp and £16pp for a cheese course.
For further information visit Boringdon Hall Hotel
By Lisa Curtiss