LUX Spring 2018

LUXLIFE MAGAZINE | 119 Spring 2018 Nowhere is this desire to please more noticeable than at the estate’s impeccable restaurant, Auberge du Lac. Presided over by a mysterious statue of a Canadian trouper and his faithful hound, believed to have been provided by former Canadian Governor and later resident of Brocket Hall Lord Mount- Stephen, the restaurant offers exceptional food and genuine hospitality. This is evident from the moment guests arrive, as they are immediately greeted by diligent and friendly waiters, who show them through to the cosy welcome lounge where they can recline beside the warming fire whilst they wait to be seated. With evocative paintings of glorious English scenes, portraits of inquisitive wildlife and snapshots of the higher class at rest, as well as classic music, which plays unobtrusively in the background, this is a perfect space for a social drink before a hearty, delicious meal. A cocktail menu filled with ingenious twists on the classics is provided alongside a selection of delicate amuse bouche, which tantalise the palate before diners are led to the restaurant below, which has views of the hall, clubhouse and the mirror-like surface of the lake. The décor is modern, with crisp, clean lines complemented by a rustic serving style, with food served on elegant ceramic plates shaped work in perfect aesthetic harmony each individual dish. History and heritage remain a focus for the attentive waiting staff, who are always keen to share fascinating facts with their diners. For example, one of the Champagnes served as part of the Auberge Experience, a sumptuous eight-course taster menu expertly paired with a selection of wines, was created at a vineyard used as a hospital during the Second World War, as was Brocket Hall, which was a maternity hospital during the conflict. Both the tasting menu and the à la Carte feature creative European flavours merged with an English decadence, creating an unforgettable fine dining experience like no other. The tasting menu offers a unique sample of the very best that the kitchen has to offer, with highlights including an indulgent spiced granola featuring macadamia nuts, accompanying earthy beetroot with apple served three ways to offer the perfect balance of flavour; a creamy Cep risotto with perfectly cured egg yolks; as well as venison served with a bold, charismatic jus. To round off this exquisite feast is not one but two luxurious desserts; a miso caramel served with refreshing mango puree and cooling granite, followed by a modern take on a Tiramisu, which features dainty ladyfinger biscuits steeped in coffee, a liquor spiked cream and a pristine sheet of white chocolate on top. Following such a decedent repast guests can do no better than a pleasant stroll around the grounds, which are as glorious in the evening as they are during the day. The ever-diligent hotel staff are more than happy to convey guests from the restaurant to their rooms or the clubhouse via golf buggies, however in clement weather walking is highly recommended, as it allows visitors to fully comprehend the natural splendour in which they are basking. Looking out over the water from the architecturally magnificent bridge, one could be fooled into believing that they are on the set of a film; indeed, the establishment has been featured in the TV Series Pride & Prejudice, which effectively launched Colin Firth’s career, and is also repeatedly referenced in the ITV show Victoria, although no screen could ever do true justice to the natural majesty of these phenomenal grounds. A gushing waterfall creates a naturally crafted infinity pool for the myriad of gambolling water birds that frolic on the plateau of water, whilst the trees sway in a refreshing breeze and the scene remains tranquil and beautiful for as far as the eye can see. Ultimately, such a vast estate offers a myriad of possibilities: from wedding venue to conference hall, golfing holiday to gourmet break, arts and wine club events and even membership to the whole estate for businessmen and women who want access to meeting rooms, fine dining, exclusive use of the hall with full butler service and concierge. However, when all is said and done, Brocket Hall is, quintessentially, a beautiful slice of English heritage. Wherever they go and whatever they do in this sprawling, perfectly maintained estate, guests are always reminded that this is the very epitome of luxury British hospitality. To find out more or book your visit to this 18th century paradise, visit Photo credit: Amber Clews Photo credit: Amber Clews