Derbyshire update: from pyclets to Michelin-starred dining
Thank goodness the barbecue season is nearly over! That may sound bah humbug, but personally I have never tasted anything cooked on a barbecue that wouldn’t taste better cooked in an oven. You may disagree but I like to eat out. But not out in someone’s back garden on a plastic chair balancing a plate in one hand, a glass in another, with no proper starter, main or dessert, and no particular dress code other than vests, trainers and shorts.
On the topic of dress codes, Fischer’s at Baslow Hall near Chatsworth House (one of Great Food Club’s recommended restaurants) features in the Good Food Guide 2016 and is the only restaurant in Derbyshire with a Michelin Star. It has a smart casual dress code. The restaurant is pricey but for special occasions (or if money is not a problem), the menu is fantastic. A la carte lunch boasts dry-aged Derbyshire beef with Wye Valley asparagus and onion puree. Or you could try the ‘Taste of Britain’ lunch menu, which is gastronomically amazing! Head chef Rupert Rowley trained with Raymond Blanc at Le Manoir and Gordon Ramsay at Hospital Road, so I’m sure Rupert has a few stories to tell about those days.
Fischer’s at Baslow Hall, Calver Road, Baslow, Derbyshire, DE45 1RR. 01246 583259. Open daily.
In fact, almost everywhere you go in Derbyshire you will find delicious produce, and the Derbyshire Cook Book (on sale now for £14.95) embraces this with over 40 recipes, stories and insight from local food experts. For example, butcher Owen Taylor & Sons of Alfreton tell you how to cook the perfect steak. More importantly for Derbyshire food lovers, the book features places where you can expect to get a good meal locally.
One of the businesses mentioned in the book is Derby’s Pyclet Parlour, a bakery and cafe in Derby city centre’s Victorian Market Hall where you can perch on a stool at the counter and enjoy a pyclet!
For anyone who doesn’t know, a pyclet (it is only spelt ‘pyclet’ in Derby, everywhere else it is ‘pikelet’) is a flat crumpet: basically flour, yeast, milk and salt, served with sweet or savoury toppings such as smoked salmon and horseradish cream, or Stilton, honey and walnuts.
Pyclets are indigenous to Derbyshire and were popular in Derby until the 1970s; The Pyclet Parlour has resurrected and reinvented them – and at two for a fiver they make a fantastic lunch!
And now there is also no need to miss out on pyclets if you only visit Derby in the evening – the world’s first pyclet vending machine is situated at Derby Bus Station! And maybe best of all, no dress code is required when eating or purchasing pyclets.
Pyclet Parlour, Unit 1, Derby Market Hall, Tenant Street, Derby, DE1 2DB. Open Monday to Saturday