Stoke Park Club's Dining Room - Restaurant Review
PUBLISHED: 00:16 03 February 2011 | UPDATED: 20:36 20 February 2013
Tessa Harris celebrates the opening of Stoke Park Club's Dining Room to non members with a meal to remember...
It was six years since I last had the pleasure of dining at the impressive Stoke Park Club at Stoke Poges. Its members-only restaurant was then, as now, under the excellent stewardship of executive head chef Chris Wheeler. (Eating in exclusive places like this is one of the perks of the job I confess!) Chriss impressive culinary credentials include being right man to Jean Christophe Novelli, so I knew exactly what I could expect.
Up until now the general public was deprived of Chriss teams expertise. This did not mean, however, that the fine dining went unrewarded and last year the Dining Room was awarded two AA rosettes. The club itself was also given an AA five star rating, which means it is required to open its restaurant to the public.
So now, Im happy to report, the Dining Room is open to all. Non members can enjoy lunch and dinner seven days a week, although a reservation must be made in advance. Whats more, the evening menu is priced at 45 for three courses.
The restaurant location has moved next to the Orangery, so that it now looks out onto beautiful landscaped grounds. The room itself is grand,
yet intimate. The ceilings are as high as the standards yet the dcor is warm and elegant.
On a chilly Sunday evening we took our seats next to the fire. A mouth-watering amuse bouche of duck parfait, brioche and madeira jelly served on a slate set the tone.
Our matre d for the evening was Howard Davies, formerly of the Compleat Angler at Marlow and a great asset to the dining room. We were happy to be guided by his recommendations.
My pan fried scallops were hand-dived and delicious each cooked in a different way. One came on a bed of celeriac puree, another nestling under crispy pancetta, while the third was cooked in a port reduction and finished with caviar.
My husbands Roasted Duck Breast topped with Seared Foie Gras served with Apple and Potato Rosti was accompanied by a delicious truffle sauce. There was a 4.50 supplement to pay but he pronounced it superb. His pan fried pav of bream with a Leek, Butternut Squash and Parmesan Risotto, was no less disappointing. Again there was a 5 supplement.
I also found myself waxing lyrical over my lamb, cooked just the way
I like it, with a fulsome jus flavoured with redcurrant. The mini shepherds pie was a lovely touch, contrasting the smoothness of the loin with the mince.
My husband rounded off with Milk Chocolate and Salted Peanut Parfait with Hot Butterscotch Sauce apparently the best dessert hed ever had and my Chocolate and Caramel Fondant with Muscovado Ice Cream is now legendary at the club.
We finished off with coffee and petit fours for an extra 4.50.
It was an excellent meal all round and all the better for the value for money it offered, although several supplements obviously bumped up the bill. However, we felt it was absolutely worth it. So, for Chris and his team its onwards and upwards towards a third AA rosette and hopefully a Michelin star. It certainly would be well deserved.
Book a Table
The Dining Room
Stoke Park Club,
Stoke Poges, SL2 4PG
Tel: 01753 717171