Gloucestershire Echo – Food Review Jazz Sunday Lunches
Every 1st Sunday in the month – Sunday lunch with live music
WHAT better way to enjoy your Sunday roast dinner than with a live jazz and swing accompaniment.
That’s what’s on offer at the Wesley House in Winchcombe on the first Sunday of every month. Entertainment is in the form of The Cocktail Hour – two men mixing up jazz hits from the likes of Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin.
It’s almost as if you could shut your eyes and be transported back to 1950s Las Vegas, with the Rat Pack gracing the stage at the famous Sands Hotel singing Mack The Knife.
I’ve never experienced a Sunday roast like this before – it really was a treasure that brought a smile to my face. We were ushered to our table and my toe was already tapping underneath the table.
The Wesley House is a quaint English restaurant in the heart of Winchcombe. With its low ceilings and a cosy atmosphere, the Wesley House is definitely somewhere I would come to enjoy a meal. And the novel idea of having live, easy-listening music as you dined, was a bonus in itself.
The music wasn’t invasive either – it really was very pleasant.
The Sunday lunch was a set menu, with two courses being a reasonable £20 and if you wanted a pudding, it was £25 for three. They were a little slow to take our orders, but a large party had just sat down before us, so all was forgiven. They were still very attentive, manager included, which is always a bonus to see. I opted for a ham hock terrine while my boyfriend went for something a little different – the mushroom mille-feuille. Both were delicious and we quickly cleaned our plates.
For the roast we both chose the beef. Calling it the best roast beef I’ve ever tasted wouldn’t be too far off the mark. The meat was cooked to my personal perfection, the roasties were just the right amount of crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside, and the size of the Yorkshire pudding was on a par with a football. You know it’s a good sign when you’re both eating in silence but giving each other a knowing nod about how divine the food is.
Clean plates once again and it was time to move onto the desserts. Creme brulee and peach parfait were our choices. The creme brulee was so silky smooth and creamy, my only complaint being that I wish there was more of it! The orange shortbread biscuits that accompanied it were also very tasty.
I’m not a huge fan of peaches, but I did manage to steal a spoonful of the parfait, which turned out to be a pleasant surprise.
We wrapped up our afternoon by finishing off our drinks to the sound of The Cocktail Hour.
The restaurant itself seemed small, so booking in advance for the Sunday lunches is definitely recommended. As we ducked our heads to avoid the low beams as we left, I was left with that warm feeling inside, knowing that I had experienced something very special.
Hardens – 2014
A restaurant in a Tudor house praised for its “relaxed and civilised atmosphere” and some “surprisingly varied and imaginative cooking for a place hidden away in a quaint Cotswold town”.
Weekend Magazine – Gloucestershire Echo – 2013
The restaurant is housed in a pretty black and white 15th Century Merchant’s House in Winchcombe – by night illuminated with dainty white lights and glows with candle night. By day it basks in sunlight streaming through its old windows. There is a cosy lounge by the front door with an inglenook fireplace where you can order drinks before taking them through to your table. The beautiful atrium at the back is perfect for summer dining with views of the surrounding hills and a draped canopy preventing the midday sun from getting too much. Seated in this light room one hot Sunday afternoon with the air conditioning on and windows thrown open enabled us to dine inside without missing out on the glorious weather.
With the elegant surrounding we expected a tariff to match but were pleasantly surprised by the prices. Starters began at a reasonable £6 (for the flavoursome goats cheese mousse) and main courses from £12.50 (pepper and asparagus risotto). We’ve paid the same in some very mediocre gastro pubs before and this felt like a real treat.
Wesley House has an AA 2 Rosette Award and Head Chef, Cedrik Rullier, specialises in classically-inspired, modern European dishes.
Cotswolds Food & Drink Guide 2012
The reputation of Wesley House spreads far beyond the boundaries of this unspoilt Cotswold town, and, once you visit, it’s clear why. A gorgeous, old timber-beamed building (with the contemporary Wine Bar & Grill nestled next to it), this two-AA-rosette restaurant promises high-quality, locally sourced dishes and proficient service – and it delivers on all fronts with panache.
Our delectable meal began with a light carrot and coriander velouté, followed by smoked salmon with hand-pickled cucumber, and blue cheese mousse tart scattered with toasted walnuts. Next came caramelised Gressingham duck, immersed in a sage sauce, and rich roast guinea fowl breast, complemented by earthy celeriac purée and thyme jus.
These dishes illustrated the skill and imagination of the head chef – it’s no wonder this restaurant is so well-loved by critics and visitors alike.