A Warm & Special Stay in The Lake District at The Lamplighter Dining Rooms, Windermere
Warm, intimate, classy, with a dining experience which sets it apart. We stayed at The Lamplighter Dining Rooms in Windermere for two nights during our visit to the Lake District, Cumbria, the latest in our series of trips around the UK and Ireland this winter. We left feeling very lucky.
Staying at the Lamplighter was filled with moments which brought smiles to our faces, moments we did not just experience by luck, but due to the thoughtful attention and planning of the owners and staff here. The Lamplighter is run by the Tasker family, we spoke with James who explained to us how he and his brother Alistair grew up here and were warned by their mother not to go into the family business and told how difficult it can be. However with such a love of the industry, a wealth of experience and determination to keep up with the latest trends and provide a great experience to customers they make it look very easy. When talking about their experience in the industry it really is eyebrow raising. Alistair, the head chef has years of experience working at places such as Ascot, Newbury, and Lancaster House Hotel. James who oversees the front of house has worked at world renowned establishments The Savoy, The Dorchester, and Claridge’s, they have transferred this experience perfectly here and created a special place to stay and to dine.
Our room was warm, comfortable and really nicely furnished, we had a pair of amazing chairs (sounds funny enthusing about chairs but they were really cool!), it really was very relaxing. We also had a huge bathroom, after hours exploring the hills and the lakes in January, coming back here was just right and felt like a home from home. We were provided with a lovely brochure giving more information about the Lamplighter and some great information about the local area and suggestions for things to do.
Waking up and going downstairs to a plate filled with great local produce for breakfast was the best way of setting ourselves up for a day of adventure in one of, if not the most spectacular area in the UK. Windermere is ideally located to explore the area as well. A five minute drive or 20 min stroll will take you to Bowness-on-Windermere, from the pier here on the shore of Lake Windermere we took a cruise with Windermere Lake Cruises. We took the red cruise which sails between Bowness and Ambleside on the northernmost edge of the Lake. You can stay on the boat for a round trip or you can do as we did and get off, explore lovely Ambleside and then catch a later cruise back to Bowness. The return trip takes around 70-75 minutes and includes a commentary pointing out places of interest along the shoreline of England’s biggest lake. I would really recommend trying to time a cruise with sunset, it created some absolutely amazing views.
We also went on a walk suggested in the brochure at The Lamplighter. We parked at a National Trust car park at Glen Mary Bridge on the A593 and walked up past the pretty Tom Gill waterfalls to Tarn Hows and then up onto Oxen Fell. The route suggested took you to Black Fell, but we went off path (and got lost) but saw some awesome scenery.
It was only around a 20 minute drive from The Lamplighter to the car park and it was a really pretty walk which can be as long or as short as you like, we could not get enough of the scenery though and kept saying “Lets just go to here” six hours later we found our way back to the car park! It was great fun, exploring this area of the U.K is brilliant, sometimes I forget that scenery like this can be found in the UK.
Find out more about what else we got up to in this fantastic area here.
It was the food and the dining experience which really set The Lamplighter apart, we had food both nights here and we had two different kinds of experience but both equally special. Both nights we ate in the art deco bar area where they have managed to create this warm inviting atmosphere. Dining here, in these surroundings is a special occasion, but at the same time relaxed and fun. The menu is filled with Great British dishes made from fresh locally sourced products. On the night of our arrival, after travelling, Alex (my brother who joined me on this trip) and I had our attention grabbed by the Home Comforts section of the menu, he opted for the famous Fleetwood Fish & Chips and I had the Lancashire Beef Suet Pudding both served with triple cooked chips cooked in dripping. Our meals were everything we were looking for and so much more, the best ingredients with that added extra attention which really gave the dishes that wow factor. Home comforts and then some!
We got chatting with the couple sat next to us about everything they had been up to in the area and they told us how impressed they were with their meals as well, they recommended the Damson Gin Pannacotta for dessert, sometimes it really pays off accepting some advice! It was beautiful. Then just as we were finishing off our desserts a group playing brilliant folk music took their seats in the bar! Another awesome idea from the management and something which added to this lovely atmosphere. It was a really enjoyable evening, everybody showing their appreciation to some talented musicians, this was an evening of the very best of British.
Both nights when we had been seated the specials on the menu were explained to us, on our second night we were told how they had just taken delivery of some lovely fresh Herdwick Lamb from a local farmer who only supplies to them and that they had three dishes to choose from one being roasted best end, we were both convinced and both went for it. It was the best lamb I have ever had, without a doubt, such a high quality product, cooked to perfection, we really did leave with a sense of feeling very lucky. I get the idea that the majority of people who visit The Lamplighter leave with this feeling.
The Lamplighter Dining Rooms really can cater for everyone, the menu has great variety and at the same time as feeling like fine dining it is unpretentious and comfortable. The drinks menu again swept from local ales to the world’s most expensive gin!
This was a very enjoyable stay in one of the most beautiful areas of Britain, with some of the best British food and a taste of the best British atmosphere…thanks Alistair and James, you have created a polished jewel in the heart of the Lake District.
You can book your stay at The Lamplighter Dining Rooms directly on their website which also gives you the chance of winning a free weekend away. Alternatively you can also book through Expedia. Make sure if wanting to eat here to call and reserve a table as it really is popular.
We were helped by Cumbria Tourism in arranging this trip and they could not have been more helpful, their website is filled with activities, things to do, places to see, places to stay, it is a great tool to use to discover more about this incredible area, you can also book your accommodation here. Check out their Love Cumbria visitor discount card as well, it is full of great 2 for 1 offers on attractions, money off offers on loads of places…including food at the Lamplighter!
Thanks again for reading, look out for my upcoming posts and check out more about what we got up to in The Lake District