Award winning Gastro Pub The Swan in Bampton signs up again for the Exmoor Food Fest

The multi-award-winning gastro-pub will be joined by other top pubs and restaurants offering specially priced menus on selected days during February to encourage diners to eat out as part of the Exmoor Food Festival.

Patron chef Paul Berry, who co-owns The Swan with his wife Donna, who is a chef too, said: “We’re very excited once again this year to be part of the Exmoor Food Festival, which runs from February 1 until 28.

“It’s an event to showcase the very best the region has to offer diners and it is a celebration of all local produce and the culinary expertise we have here on our doorstep.”

The Swan will be running special menus as part of Exmoor Food Festival on Tuesday to Friday lunchtimes and Tuesday to Thursday evenings, excluding Valentine’s Day, during February with two courses priced £10 and three courses £15.

Paul and Donna will also be cooking at a special launch dinner for the 2017 festival at the Luttrell Arms in Dunster on January 26. They will be one of sevenaward-winning chefs including Olivier Certain from the Taste of the West top award-winning restaurant, Clavelshay Barn, joining the Luttrell’s Head Chef, Barrie Tucker to cook seven courses.

Paul added: “It’s a privilege to have been asked again to cook at this special event and we’re delighted to be working alongside some of the areas most talented chefs like Olivier. It promises to be a fantastic evening out for everyone who comes along.”

The Exmoor Food Festival runs throughout February and is organised by Elke Winzer who is also behind Exmoor4all, an online platform for all things Exmoor related, including an online shop, and the Exmoor Markets.

Elke said: “The Exmoor Food Festival helps local businesses in the hospitality sector to show off their skills. The festival deal of two courses for £10 tempts many people into restaurants at a time of year when business tends to be slow.

“For the first time this year all participating pubs and restaurants will also take part in the Taste of Exmoor Awards. Customers will be able to vote online for their best dining experience – the winners will be crowned at an awards ceremony at Butlins in Minehead at the end of March.

“Tearooms and village shops are also encouraged to sign up for the Exmoor Food Festival.”

The Swan, which is an AA Four Star Inn and the oldest pub in Bampton, has scooped a plethora of awards for its food including being voted Best Trencherman’s Pub 2016. It has two AA Rosettes for Culinary Excellence as well. 

Last year the pub was named (March, 2016) as a Highly Commended winner in the national tourist board VisitEngland’s Awards for Excellence 2016. This Award places The Swan in the top five businesses for excellence in the pub category in England.

The team has a passion for food and embraces the use of produce from the area to create some real pub classics, as well as some more modern English dishes.

Donna said: “We try to keep our dishes simple, yet bursting with flavours and imagination. Our kitchen produces everything we serve here at the pub.” 

The Swan’s menu is created from fresh, seasonal ingredients, sourced from nearby, on a daily basis by Paul and Donna and their team. 

Paul, who is a leading chef with more than 30 years’ experience in the industry, explained: “We are dedicated to using all the local or regional produce available to us, needless to say we are so lucky living here in the West Country, we have local farmers supplying us with their beef, pork and lamb and the fishing communities providing us with the freshest cod for our classic cod and chips.”

To find out more about The Swan, please call 01398 332248 or visit www.theswan.co.

 

Advertisements

Exmoor Food Fest to launch at The Castle in Taunton

Award winning chefs from the region are joining The Castle’s head chef on 28 January in Taunton to prepare a mouthwatering Taste of Exmoor menu.  Tickets are limited, so early booking is very advisable:

Canapés & Fizz
Hospitality Students
(The Combe, West Somerset College, Minehead)

Starter
Olivier Certain (Clavelshay Barn, North Petherton)

Slow Roasted Belly of Little Oak Farm Pork, Black Pudding & Quail Scotch Egg, Apple and Cider

Fish Course
Mark Dodson (Mason Arms, Knowstone)

Pan Fried Scallop with a Thai Style Salad, Rice Wine Dressing

Main Course
The Castle Hotel, Taunton

Roast Exmoor Venison Loin, Faggot, Red Cabbage,
Jerusalem Artichoke and Wild Mushrooms

 Dessert
Paul & Donna Berry (The Swan, Bampton)

Lemon Cheesecake with Exmoor Wolf Gin, Tonic and Thyme Sorbet

Petit Fours and Breads
The Castle Hotel

Four course dinner:  £75.00 per person
(including a glass of fizz & 2 glasses of wine)

BOOK NOW

Award winning Exmoor-based chefs are joining The Castle’s head chef Liam Finnegan to cook up a Taste of Exmoor menu as the launch of the 2016 Exmoor Food Fest which takes place all over Exmoor in February.

The menu showcases the best the region has to offer. It is a celebration of local produce and local talent.

Elke Winzer, who is organising the Exmoor Food Fest as part of Exmoor4all, is delighted that so many outstanding chefs are bringing the best of Exmoor to Taunton.

“The launch at the renown Castle in Taunton brings some of the amazing Exmoor chefs together who all take part in the Exmoor Food Fest which takes place all over Exmoor in February.  It is a great opportunity for us to raise awareness of the high standard of Exmoor restaurants some of which are hidden gems,” explained Elke.

Liam Finnegan commented: “We are excited to host the launch of the Exmoor Food Fest. It is a great opportunity for us chefs to work together and create a stunning menu.”

Award winning chefs Mark Dodson, Paul and Donna Berry and Olivier Certain  are joined by the hospitality students of the West Somerset College training restaurant The Combe in Minehead. The students will prepare the selection of canapés which will open then night’s food celebration with a glass of fizz.

The Chefs:

Mark Dodson

Mark and his wife Sarah took over the The Mason Arms in Knowstone in June 2005. In July 2006, the restaurant was awarded a Michelin star which they still hold. Since then, Mark and his team have gone from strength to strength, receiving many awards and accolades, including Michelin Pub of the Year 2010.

Prior to moving to Exmoor, Mark spent twelve years as Head Chef of Michel Roux’s Waterside Inn in Bray.

Paul and Donna Berry

There aren’t many awards Paul and Donna haven’t won for their historic pub “The Swan” in Bampton.  Best Trencherman’s Pub of the Year 2016, Visit Devon Pub of the Year Gold Award, and AA Gold Star Award are amongst the most recent accolades, recognising Paul’s and Donna’s passion for food and the use of local, seasonal produce.

Liam Finnegan

Liam Finnegan, who has been head chef at The Castle Hotel in Taunton for three years, grew up in Carlingford, Co Louth in Ireland from where he still sources their famous oysters. However, whenever possible, he uses local suppliers.

Liam’s career path took him through some fantastic restaurants such as The George Hotel on the Isle of White, The Bath Priory and Gidleigh Park where he worked for Micheal Cains, and The Nuremore Hotel (Ray McArdle). When asked about awards Liam counters that a full restaurant and happy customers are more important. “Of course accolades are brilliant, but anything we get, we receive and share as a team.”

Olivier Certain

Marseille-born Olivier moved to Somerset in 1998 following his Michelin star training in La Bonne Etape Chateau Arnoux and Les Roches in Le Lavandou.  In 2006 he joined Woods in Dulverton as head chef where he achieved 2 rosettes and the accolade of Somerset Dining Pub of the Year 2008, 2010 and 2011. In 2009 in reached the finals of the South West Chef of the Year competition.

Olivier now heads the kitchen at Clavelshay Barn in North Petherton.

The Students

The Year 13 hospitality students from train at West Somerset College, Minehead under Chef Lecturers Paul Ruttledge (a former British Master Chef) and Werner Hartholt.