At risk of sounding like a broken record, I once again will start this entry with the same apology I’ve had to issue before. The photographs in this entry do not do the food justice and with food as pretty as the food presented to us by Simon Hulstone this is a real shame. The reason for this is simple, I had to resort to using an iPhone camera as my SLR did not want to play ball in low light on Saturday and I refuse to use a flash in a fine dining scenario. Shopping for a new camera is now on the agenda.
So onto the restaurant itself. The Elephant is simply stunning. When I compare this meal with others that I have eaten at one star restaurants this is up there as probably the best. The last time that we can remember eating a meal as good as this in a one star restaurant it was at The Ledbury, shortly before it was awarded its second star.
We were greeted with a warm welcome on arrival and shown to our table upstairs in ‘The Room’. The Brasserie downstairs was full and there was a great atmosphere, my fingers were firmly crossed at this point that upstairs wasn’t going to be quiet with hushed tones for the evening. My fears were unfounded though as upstairs was also full as we were the last to take our seats in the part of the room that we were to be dining.
Beets and Curds – Candy, golden and Cheltenham beets, elderflower, Vulscombe goats cheese, tansy
Rioja Blanco 2010 Montelciego, Rioja, Spain
Ham Hock – Tortellini, toffee pea, salted pecans, shoots
Vouvray 2009 Domaine du Vaufuget, Loire, France
Scallops – Cabbage and confit lemon risotto, scallop, mussel foam (bonus freebie course)
Halibut – Parsnip, lardo, verjus, spring onions, golden sultanas, flowers
St Aubin 1er Cru 2009 ‘La Chantaniere’ Gerard Thomas, Bourgogne, France
Duck – Roasted breast, celeriac puree, pak choi, spiced honey, pain d’epices
Pinot Noir 2008 Tindall vineyard, Marlborough, New Zeland
Cheesecake – Passion fruit, vanilla, honeycomb, citrus
Coffee – Coffee with petit fours
The Elephant is a fantastic restaurant and well worth a visit to Torquay. The tasting menu is priced at £60 per person and the matching wine menu priced at £27.50 per person which for food and wine at this level I think is very good value for money.
This meal was up there as one of the very best that we have had this year. We are in Devon at least once a year for family occasions and The Elephant will be getting a visit each and every time from now on.
3 & 4 Beacon Terrace,