Harden's survey result
“The Wye Valley setting is remote and peaceful” at Chris & Kirsty Harrod’s restaurant-with-rooms, which is again enthusiastically endorsed for its “fascinating (I had to ask about the ingredients, many of which seem to have been foraged or grown locally) cooking with a stunning level of skill, care and attention going into every plate”, plus “interesting wine pairings” and “informed and professional service”. In October 2019 the couple purchased the freehold, with plans to up the degree of luxury and number of rooms.
“Top chef, outstanding food, a great fine dining experience”: Great British Menu chef, Chris Harrod continues to inspire high acclaim at this stylish restaurant-with-rooms in the Wye Valley, with his “Noma-esque” cuisine. “Vaut le détour!”.
“In the middle of the lush Wye valley” (“no mobile reception here”), this long acclaimed “foodie gem” regained its star shortly after the arrival of chef/proprietor Chris Harrod in 2013 (and lost ‘The Crown’ from its name shortly after). Fans proclaim the “locally sourced and foraged” cuisine “unique” (“Noma in Britain!”) with the “added benefit of eight comfy rooms to sleep it off”.
“Tucked away in the Monmouthshire countryside”, Chris Harrod’s long-famous inn (he dropped ‘The Crown’ from its name in recent times) is “not the easiest place to find, but worth the effort”. “It’s ordinary-looking from the outside, but evidently older once you get in”, and the food is “superb, with subtle flavours that are utterly delicious”. “Along with its craft ales and fine wines, it’s a perfect bolt-hole after a busy week – pure comfort for the soul!”
The Whitebrook, Restaurant with Rooms Restaurant Diner Reviews
"The only option for dinner was a tasting menu, which was not a problem as that is what we would have chosen anyway. First class food with interesting wine pairings."
"An isolated country idyll setting in the Wye Valley, a restaurant that prides itself on its use of local and garden produce to provide a dining experience for the intrepid foodies braving the journey. To say that this was a low-key affair would be not far off, and it seemed that the country setting, in a traditional adapted-pub dining room, came with country service - no sign of any interaction with the couple of front of house staff in attendance and mechanical presentation of the dishes, which was what we should have been expecting from the instance of chef passing through as we were enjoying a pre-dinner English sparkling wine, my wishing him a good evening and receiving nothing more than a cursory half-nod in reply. Some of the food made just as little impression, the “canapé” of yoghurt mousse with a cucumber sauce being neutral at best, but the beetroot dish that followed was lifted by some good black pudding well contrasted with four colour types of beetroot and a sweet madeira jus, although the aromatic seeds listed on the menu were notable for their lack of presence. We enjoyed the sweet scallop with its excellent fermented carrot and fried chicken skin contrast, although opinions of the nasturtium purée were divided. Roasted cauliflower was well done with a creamy purée and an onion and chervil background, and the sea bass was generally fine even though what the chewy lardo dressing the fish spoilt things slightly and the mallow purée (yes another one!) proved too delicate for the intensity of the heritage tomatoes. A welcome and surprise element was some tiny chickpeas which went surprisingly well with the fish. The three cuts of salt marsh lamb with the jus from the cooking, goats curd and three variations of garden courgette were fine but the meat was at a temperature that seemed to be less than resting. Then came the out-and-out star of the evening, chef’s spectacular Great British Menu pork dish which was definitely superior to anything else on the menu and very easy to see why even other chefs had given it the 10/10 maximum. A decent palate cleanser led into an excellent dessert with a sorbet of back garden herbs, aerated raspberry mousse and cocoa and nut sprinkle. Overall, the predominance of purées and mousses left an impression of an imbalance in the consistencies of the dishes, and apart from the GBM stand-out the meal did not come up to our expectations."
"Great food but long waits between courses."
Whitebrook, NP25 4TX
|Wednesday||12 pm‑2 pm, 7 pm‑9 pm|
|Thursday||12 pm‑2 pm, 7 pm‑9 pm|
|Friday||12 pm‑2 pm, 7 pm‑9 pm|
|Saturday||12 pm‑2 pm, 7 pm‑9 pm|
|Sunday||12 pm‑2 pm, 7 pm‑9 pm|