Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Miller Howe Cafe, Grasmere

Sincere apologies for the Leeds Festival shaped hole in my blogging activities!  However I'm back now and raring to go. I started at my new teaching post in a Reception class today, but hoping to still fit in lots of cooking, eating and blogging or I'll go insane!

In last Friday's post I told you about the day out I had with my Mum and sister in Grasmere. As promised, here is my review on the dinner we had that day. We were torn between 'Miller Howe Café' and 'Greens' which are on opposite sides of the village square. We plumped for the former as there was room to eat outside and the menu was a little more varied. 'Greens' is a favourite with my Mum, however, and she heartily recommends it if you're visiting.
We ordered drinks first from an extensive collection of fresh fruit juices, I went for homemade lemonade and was very pleased with this monster glass. Usually I find that if you order a fruit juice they fob you off with a weeny bottle and an even weenier glass, but this was perfect. I found the colour a little odd and at first thought I'd been given orange juice instead, but the taste was wonderfully sweet and lemony. Very refreshing.

We had a bit of a nightmare when it came to ordering; there are just so many dishes! Lot's of ingredients and combination that you wouldn't usually find on your average lunch menu, meant that I didn't want to miss out and found deciding very difficult! One thing I did notice though, is the complete lack of chips on the menu. Not being a chip lover myself I didn't mind at all but I did find this a little different and it was actually very noticeable. Anyway, after a long long process of shortlisting and elimination, I decided to go for the toasted club sandwich, on triple decker toast.

I placed our orders at the till with the very polite and friendly waiter, who seemed to really make the effort to make natural conversation with each customer, which was appreciated. The service was also very fast considering the vast menu and small kitchen they appeared to be working in. A few minutes later I got my sandwich. It had been advertised as being served with a trio of salads which I thought were fantastic. Much better than your usual pre bagged wilted affair! I'm not sure where one salad ended and the next begun but the highlight was the creamy pasta salad that included ham and some kind of beans. The rest was really crunchy and full of flavour; top marks for a side dish!

The club sandwich involved bacon, lettuce, tomato and mushrooms; no complaints there. Fresh fantastic ingredients. However the chicken and egg that were promised came in the form of chicken mayonnaise and egg mayonnaise. I felt this was okay, but it I'd have much preferred it without, as it all became a bit soggy. Slightly thicker bread would have probably helped. These are only teeny complaints because overall this meal was a real treat, and the little touches were superb.
Also worth a mention were the other meals in our trio. My mum ordered the brie, bacon and mushroom jacket potato which was piled high with filling and got rave reviews. My sister ordered their homemade sausage roll with jacket potato and beans; it wasn't very photogenic bless it but made up for it in taste. There was no big gap of air between the sausage and the pastry, a rarity that went down very well!

All in all; good quality food that you can tell a lot of effort has gone into, a huge menu full of unusual lunches, friendly service and a lovely eating environment whether outdoors or in. We'll definitely be returning.

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