Grasmere’s The Forest Side will officially welcome Paul Leonard as its new head chef on 19th November, following the departure of Kevin Tickle this summer.
The Michelin-starred, four AA Rosette restaurant and rooms will also reveal an all-new menu developed by Leonard and his team.
It was announced in August that Leonard would replace Tickle, who stepped down to pursue other ventures.
Having previously cooked under the likes of Marcus Wareing and Andrew Fairlie, Leonard’s Michelin experience also includes retaining a star at The Isle of Eriska on the west coast of Scotland.
He joins The Forest Side from The Devonshire Arms in Bolton Abbey, where he has held the position of head chef since 2017.
Introducing his own take on Forest Side’s signature 6-course ‘Lal ‘Un’ (£80) and 10-course ‘Grand ‘Un’ (£105) tasting menus, his dishes will include seasonal delights such as Cured seabass, apple, turnip; Tartare of deer, English caviar, cured yolk; Forest Side garden carrots, preserved green walnuts, young sheep’s cheese; Aged duck, beets, berries. For dessert, guests will be able to enjoy the likes of Pear, buttermilk, sorrel, as well as a selection of cheese from The Courtyard Dairy.
As well as showcasing local producers, Leonard’s menus will make the most of The Forest Side’s extensive acre of kitchen garden, which grows approximately 60% of the restaurant’s fresh seasonal fruit and vegetables together with an array of flowering plants and herbs.
Leonard’s plans as head chef also include a series of chef collaborations in 2020 and a partnership with Champagne house Champagne Salon, with further details to be announced in due course.
Speaking on the new role, Paul Leonard says: “I’m incredibly excited to finally be joining The Forest Side – it’s any chef’s dream property, with so much produce at our fingertips both onsite and from Cumbria’s extensive larder. I can’t wait to show our customers the menus myself and the team have been working on for the past couple of months, and to reveal more about the exciting projects we have lined up for 2020 and beyond.”
Lake District based Wildsmith Hotels is headed up by Andrew Wildsmith and comprises The Ryebeck and Hipping Hall, alongside The Forest Side.