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on 24 June 2013
I was delighted to find The Walled Garden had published a recipe book. My ancestors over many generations came from the Somerset village of Wrington and a couple of years ago my sister, my elderly mother and I spent a week in Wrington researching our family tree, visiting places my mother remembered as a child, and places where our ancestors lived or worked. As part of our explorations we wanted to find where my great grandfather may have worked as a jobbing gardener - and we visited The Walled Garden where he may have worked - we were delighted by quality of the restaurant we found there - The Walled Garden - because of its interesting food and drink in a stunning setting. We could imagine the walled garden in bygone years and we took tons of photos. Wrington Vale is very beautiful and unspoilt and the views from the garden are terrific. For anyone visiting The Walled Garden we recommend a stay at Stablegrove - a brilliant B&B nearby with its own bluebell woods, llamas & great breakfasts - very hospitable owners and pretty rooms. Not only is this book interesting and great to look at, the recipes we have tried from it work brilliantly. Particular favourites are mussels in cider and tarragon (very easy and probaby the best thing to do with mussels), slow cooked goat with lentils (delicious comfort food) and tandoor scallops with celeriac & samphire (excellent combination that shows off good scallops). I'm working my way through the recipes in the book. I don't think I'm brave enough to make my own Vermouth (as they do) but its interesting to read how its done. The cocktails in the book include my own favourite (Negroni) plus some of their own creative inventions. Most recipe ingredients are easy for me to source from my own (excellent) local suppliers and farmers markets on the South Coast, other ingredients are more localised to The Walled Garden and I'm occasionally swapping with similar ingredients (and in some recipes they do suggest alternative ingredients). This book conveys the ambition and passion that drives the writers and contributors. It's also not run-of-the-mill - it has something different to say. If you get the chance, do visit their lovely restaurant, Wrington Vale and dramatic Cheddar Gorge. Lovely book, very inspiring.
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on 12 June 2013
I have heard of these chaps through various newspapers and I decided to take a punt and buy their book. My word, am I glad that I did.

The book itself is a thing of beauty. Staggering photography that somehow manages to capture the scale of the landscape where the restaurant is located. The food is perfectly presented, without being over complicated and really gives you a sense of something that you can achieve at home. There are some more complicated ingredients (foraged etc), but even though I may never be able to get hold of a few things, the stories and the history that come with these ingredients are enough to keep your fascination firmly locked on the page. Where there are rare ingredients, there is also usually suggestions for alternatives, which is a great help at making this even more achievable for the average joe.

The food is simply brilliant. I've never been so excited about British produce before, and I have never seen such a beautiful array of spices used throughout. Spices tend to daunt me, as I have never really used them to their full potential before, but with this book I get a sense that the chefs know what they're doing.

There are some simpler recipes, which are quick and easy to follow, and then there are some more complicated recipes that test your skill. But instead of feeling like they're trying to test your skill, it's written in more of a way that makes you want to grow as a cook and improve. Techniques that may seem a little daunting at first soon become easy as you are guided through.

This is one of the better cookbooks I have seen in the last 5 years, and I shall certainly be paying them a visit in the coming months. This is a book that will undoubtedly stand the test of time and something I think they should be extremely proud of. I shall be buying plenty more as gifts this year.
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on 24 June 2013
With a writing style that is so open and inviting you can almost feel the cold frost on the garden in winter, smell the earth as spring warms it up and taste the delights as they arrive from the stove. As a long-standing allotment keeper this book entices me try that little bit harder in both my growing and in pairing natures bounty with well-thought out recipes. A really inspiring read.
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on 6 August 2013
For all cookbook addicts like myself this is a must-buy. Things I like about this book are: the photography (the photo of beetroot carpaccio is just stunning), the use of (mostly) easy-to-find ingredients, the list of resources for harder-to-find ingredients, the recipes for alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, the nerdy food-facts scattered throughout the book and the ethical approach to utterly delicious food. I've made quite a few meals from this book now and none of them cost a fortune, plus it gives some ideas for using stuff I grow in my garden but have struggled to find a use for (such as lovage, for example - right now I am drying lovage seeds to make the rabbit confit with lovage breadcrumbs).
I hope I've convinced you to buy this book. If you care about eating good, sustainable and delicious food, then you should at least consider it.
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on 22 May 2013
Just another cookbook? I don't think so. Interesting and unusual recipes honestly presented along with full page photographic illustrations, background information and techniques. Perhaps a little pretentious but easily forgivable. If you believe that seasonal British cooking (and drinking!) is important you must buy a copy of this book and keep it next to your HFW River Cottage collection. If you have visited their walled garden at Wrington where the cafe/restaurant is based (not far from Bristol). keep it secret!...its a magical place and not good for the waistline.
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on 26 July 2013
A great book in every way - inspired and inspiring, beautifully photographed by Jason Ingram and full of great recipes. It has so many original ideas yet avoids being wacky or full of ingredients that most of us can't source. It is a beautiful book, really well designed, written and photographed and even though I was expecting it to be brillaint it has surpassed my expectations. Buy it and go the Ethicurean to eat!
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on 11 January 2018
Bought as a Christmas present for an aspiring chef and it was well received. Would recommend!
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on 1 March 2014
It'll make you want to visit the restaurant. A bit too huntin' shootin' fishin' for me. I also bought one for my friend who is a vegetarian......ooops. However for a meat eater there are lots of beautiful recipes although I suspect it will be less hassle and tastier to have them prepared in the restaurant.
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on 27 January 2017
I loved this book from start to finish, it inspired me with every mouth-watering dish and thirst-quenching drink. Loved the photos, love the book on my shelf, it looks like an old classic which it is except not so old. :-). I can't recommend it enough. I would buy it again if anything happened to it. It's got a good list of resources at the back too.
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on 3 February 2017
Lovely book. Full of inspiration
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