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Great British Menu 2015: the pub contenders

By Fred A'Court

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Head chef, Good food guide, British pub awards, Gordon ramsay

Great British Menu 2015: the pub contenders
This year’s BBC2 Great British Menu is approaching and with past winners including Emily Watkins of the Kingham Plough, Oxfordshire, James Durrant of the Plough Inn, Longparish and Tom Kerridge of the Hand & Flowers, it’s a veritable proving ground for top calibre chefs.

Dom Chapman (pictured above)

PUB:​ The Beehive, White Waltham, Berkshire

Chef-Patron Dominic Chapman is a sixth generation restaurateur who grew up at his family’s acclaimed Castle Hotel in Taunton, Somerset. As well as experiences food on travels around the world, paid for with kitchen jobs, his culinary expertise has been gained at some of Britain’s most famous restaurants including London’s fashionable Kensington Place - where he met his wife Helen, Heston Blumenthal’s Fat Duck, Bray’s Hind’s Head, as Head Chef and as Head Chef at Michael Parkinson’s pub and restaurant The Royal Oak, Paley Street in Berkshire where he won a Michelin Star, 3 AA Rosettes and was ranked among the Good Food Guide’s top 50 restaurants in Great Britain. He moved to The Beehive last August. 

RECENT AWARDS: 

• Listed in The Times Best 25 Country Pubs with his menu praised for its mix of British Classics with French and Italian influenced dishes.

• 2 AA Rosettes, the highest accolade that can be awarded to new owners of a restaurant/pub by the AA

• ‘One to Watch Award’ organised by the Publican’s Morning Advertiser after only six months of operating at The Beehive.

SELECTIONS FROM THE MENU       

Dorset Snails with Garlic Butter, Gorgonzola and Grilled Sourdough

Gazpacho Andaluz

Risotto of Sweet Young Peas, Courgettes, Buffalo Ricotta and Parmesan

Peppered Haunch of Denham Estate Venison with Creamed Spinach and Sauce Poivrade

Strawberry and Elderflower Eton Mess

josh eggleton Pony & Trap

Josh Eggleton

PUB:​  The Pony & Trap, Chew Magna, Somerset

Josh Eggleton seemed destined to be a top chef after triumphing in the Gordon Ramsay College Scholar competition in 2003. Following this success, After a spell at Bristol’s Harbourside restaurant, the Olive Shed, where he was Head Chef for two years, he worked his way around some of the finest chefs and restaurants in the World including, Sicily’s il Mulinazzo, the New York institution, Chanterelle and 3 Michelin starred French Laundry of California. Today he is Chef Patron of The Pony & Trap where he won his first Michelin star in 2011 making him one of the youngest pub and restaurant proprietors to hold the accolade. The prestigious award was retained when the latest Michelin stars were announced last year with the menu described as classical cooking with bold flavours. He was also responsible for the introduction of a Field to Fork Kite Mark which will be used across all of its dishes sourced from within 20 miles of the pub.

RECENT AWARDS

• The Publican Morning Advertiser's Top 50 UK Gastropubs in January 2014

• Nominated for the first year in the Pub and Bar category at the prestigious catering industry awards, the Cateys.

• Best South West Food Pub,  the Great British Pub Awards 2014

• The 2014 Observer Food Monthly Awards

SELECTIONS FROM THE MENU

Chilled Lovage Soup, Hand-picked White Crab

Rainbow Carrot, Hazelnut, Lardo

Chateaubriand, Marmite Glazed Sweetbreads, Cauliflower, Pickled Ox Tongue Tartare, Green Bean Salad (for two)

Pistachio Tart, Raspberry & Pistachio Salad

mini patel

Mini Patel

PUB:​ The Pointer, Brill, Buckinghamshire

Mini Patel trained under Marco Pierre White and Gordon Ramsay. His experience has included a stint at the famous Rockpool Restaurant in Sydney. Previously head chef at the Warehouse in Southport he joined The Pointer in December 2014. Customers describe his food as a soulful take on modern fusion, with local, seasonal and well-sourced produce at it's core, adding that he has seriously raised the bar. Wherever possible produce comes direct from The Pointer’s own farm and estate including beef from free range English Longhorn cattle and pork from the farm’s rare bread Middle White pigs. On the estate, Vegetables and kitchen garden herbs are used throughout the year to keep the kitchen well stocked with the fresh produce.

RECENT AWARDS:

• Highly Commended for butchery in the Buckinghamshire Food and Drinks Awards

• Tourism Pub of the Year Gold Award

• Flavour of the South East Silver, Beautiful South Awards

SELECTIONS FROM THE MENU

Cornish lobster, green zebra tomato, Fennel, Smoked Paprika Mayonnaise

Rabbit terrine, rabbit liver parfait, spiced slaw, broad beans

Gnocchi, peas. sheep’s curd, yellow courgettes, tomato, spinach salad

Spring Lamb Faggots, creamed maris pipers, grilled spring onions, lamb gravy

Oakley Elderflower and Lemon Posset, pistachio, and lemon drizzle cake

Eve Townson

PUB:​ The Eagle and Child, Ramsbottom, Greater Manchester

On Twitter Eve Townson describes herself as a Lancashire lass who cooks from the heart. Her success at The Eagle and Child suggests she is being modest. The pub is a new entry in the Good Food Guide 2015. As a further accolade to its success, it is run as a social enterprise, offering young people who are not in education or training the chance to get into employment with work experience and qualifications. Since 2011 it has trained more than 20 disadvantaged people  with 80 per cent of those progressing into employment, education or further training. Eve and her team have a reputation for serving the best locally sourced and seasonal Pennine foods using traditional recipes.

RECENT AWARDS INCLUDE:

•Winner ‘Pub of 2014′ Daniel Thwaites Awards for Excellence

•Winner ‘Community Pub of the Year’ Sawday’s Guide to Pubs and Inns, 2014/15

•Runner up ‘Sustainable Restaurant Association People’s Choice Award’ 2015

SELECTIONS FROM THE MENU

Lancashire sausage, black pudding and Lancashire cheese, devilled black peas

Morecambe Bay crab linguini, tomato, chilli and garlic

Goosnargh duck, pan fried breast, confit leg ‘shepherd’s pie’, wilted kale

Lasagne of autumn squash and feta, toasted pinenuts, spinach veloute

Chocolate cremeux, clementine compote

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