The Chequers, Gedney Dyke
Katrina Burrill visits The Chequers at Gedney Dyke
Before I go out to any restaurant I always look on the internet to see if the venue has a website and if they have an available menu so I can see what kind of food to expect, and this was no exception. I looked on The Chequers’ website and while it contained all the information you would require the style came across as that of a more casual restaurant. This, however, wasn’t the case. The Chequers is a fine dining restaurant which serves great home cooked, locally sourced food with fantastic service.
Located south of the county between Holbeach and Long Sutton, the restaurant has achieved a fantastic reputation in the time since it was taken over and refurbished. From our arrival we were made to feel welcome by all members of staff. We visited in the evening and the restaurant had a warm feel and was decorated to a high finish. When we arrived we were asked to wait in the bar area. This also makes a perfect area for diners to retreat to after dinner, for a coffee or something a bit stronger.
We were seated at our table, which was overlooking the conservatory extension, and shown the menu. Whilst deciding what we would like to eat we were offered fresh and warm, homemade bread rolls with some homemade crisps seasoned with balsamic vinegar. The smell of the bread left a lovely aroma around our table and we were looking forward to what would follow.
For starters I chose the glazed smoked haddock omelette. The flavour combinations worked very well together and the omelette melted in the mouth. My guest chose the cream of mushroom soup with crispy chicken. This was brought to the table with the mushrooms and chicken in a soup bowl, with the soup poured on from a jug at the table. The other choices on the menu included brown shrimp, cheese and leek risotto with parmesan and crème fraîche, a terrine of ham hock with pickles and sour dough toasts and a raviolo of native lobster with a lobster cognac sauce.
After sampling the delights of the starters we were both eager to try our main courses. I had chosen the roasted Goosnargh cornfed duck breast with buttered heritage vegetables and juices. The duck was perfectly pink and full of flavour. The vegetables had a lovely crunch to them and the texture worked very well with the juicy duck breast. My guest opted for the roast local pork fillet wrapped in Parma ham with black pudding, creamed savoy cabbage, apple, shallot and cider juices. The pork was tender and succulent. The accompaniment of the black pudding and cabbage worked very well with the dish. We chose some triple cooked chips and onion rings to accompany our main courses, and whilst these were very well cooked, our main courses were very filling.
Leaving some time between courses, we were able to take in the ambience of the venue. Whilst the décor had been kept simple, with clean walls and light fittings, there was evidence of the original building, with exposed beams and brick walls.
Although we were both full, the offers of the dessert menu were too tempting. I chose the hot chocolate fondant with morello cherry sorbet and chocolate sauce. The sour cherry sorbet worked beautifully with the sweetness of the fondant and it was like a party on a plate. My guest opted for the caramelised pear tarte tatin with spiced caramel and pear sorbet. The tarte base was well cooked with a nice crunch, which added to the flavour combinations of the pear with the spiced caramel.
We ordered coffees afterwards and were served some homemade chocolate truffles and chocolate macaroons which ended the meal perfectly.