The Beech Hill Hotel is located on the eastern bank of Windermere. Its stunning views over the lake change with the seasons. Autumn is a quieter time and perfect for enjoying the rust and golden hues of the mellowing foliage and heather.
This hotel can trace its history back to the 1900s. One can still see the stone walls of the original hotel and chart its extensions and development over the decades. The hotel grounds now sweep down to Lake Windermere: the lawns meet the lake and private jetties extend out into the water.
The entrance is impressive. A Venetian chandelier of striking proportions twinkles, bronze deer stand frozen in metallic time. An ornate hearth and mantle wouldn’t look out of place in a mediaeval manor. Leather chesterfields furnish every corner. Note that the car park is on the lowest level of the property so those with a pile of luggage will be well advised to unload at reception before descending to the parking area.
Classic fine-dining ambiance
The award-winning Burlington’s Restaurant is the raison d’être for many visitors to the area. It has a classic fine-dining ambiance with tables covered with swathes of crisp white linen and tastefully wrought cutlery. There is the promise of some rather good food.
The menu is very reasonably priced and suggests 3 fixed-priced options of two, three or five courses. The portions are ample and well-presented. The dishes are eclectic and take advantage of local produce. My guest ordered dressed Muncaster White Crab on a chilled leek vichyssoise with Melba toast and pea-shoots. This was a dramatic black bowl of seafood, with architecture from the shard of grilled bread.
My starter was Crayfish tail risotto with dill, parmesan cheese and lobster glaze. I am never sure about cheese with seafood, but this worked well. The crayfish was sweet, with the parmesan offering a saltier counterpoint. A delightful dish.
My companion remained with the fishy theme and ordered Scottish Salmon with crushed purple potatoes, fennel and black onion seed relish, and tomato dressing. The salmon was perfectly cooked, and those purple potatoes remained a colourful and majestic cushion.
Vibrant dishes at Burlington’s
Pork tenderloin took my fancy, and this was served with smoked celeriac purée, potato gnocchi and baby turnips. The meat was cooked to blushing medium rare and had a crust of crushed black pepper. The gnocchi were well-formed and comforting. A winner of a dish.
Our dessert was Warm Fig and Almond Frangipane Tart with raspberry sorbet and coulis. The sponge was as light as a feather and topped with thin slices of fruit. The sorbet was refreshing, and the coulis was tangy with full-on berry flavour.
Burlington’s Restaurant is blessed with a first-class chef. Head Chef Lukasz Zebryk was born in Poland and most of the serving staff seem to hail from that region, too. He grew up eating home-grown and local produce and he has continued with that culinary philosophy here. He studied for three years in Poland and discovered a passion for Mediterranean cuisine, which is still reflected in his vibrant dishes at Burlington’s.
Phone: 0333 44 HOTEL or 0333 444 6835
Fax: 0871 90 FAXUS or 0871 903 2987
The Beech Hill Hotel
Newby Bridge Road
Cumbria, LA23 3LR