Monday, 16 May 2016

ATE AT: The Hopping Hare, Northampton



As you will know from my Harrogate blog post, I turned 25 towards the end of April and felt the need to celebrate for almost a week.

Over the last year and a bit, my housemate and I have created an unintentional tradition of birthdays - hers we spend in Milan for work, mine we have a tasty meal somewhere local. This year we ventured to the Hopping Hare, a place we'd both heard great things about but never actually been to.

The menu was fantastic. Everything sounded too good to be true and it took us a long while to decide on what to have.

Eventually, after a glass of wine each, we came to a decision.

My starter choice was the coronation chicken scotch egg with mint & cucumber yoghurt, chilli caramelised peanuts and coriander oil (above) and Cherilyn's the Shredded Beef Shortrib Ravioli, caramelised onion & pickled walnuts, roasted smoked garlic & bone marrow broth. Yes, both were as good as they sound BUT incredibly filling. My scotch egg was had the perfect flavourings and texture.

For main we both went for Slow Roasted Lamb Shoulder, fresh goat’s curd and spinach filo parcel, olive oil mashed potato, oregano marinated olives, aubergine puree, garlic buttered purple sprouting broccoli with a red wine jus. This was absolutely incredible. My only fault - I felt two of the goat's curd and spinach filo parcels was slightly unnecessary. The dish was flavoursome, big enough and filling enough without two of those.

I was absolute stuffed and my friend (who joined us for a drink half way through the meal) ended up finishing the rest of my meal.


Overall the food was incredible and I'm very pleased to know we have somewhere very close to our house that a) isn't a chain b) actually serves inventive and GOOD food and c) doesn't break the bank. Overall, our bill came to less than £65, including a bottle of wine. I would advise not even having a slight snack before you go as it is likely you'll struggle to get beyond the generous starters.

My only slight disappointment was the waitress, whom we asked for a wine recommendation, that didn't know anything about wine and responded with "I don't drink it, so I can't really tell you". In fairness, she did point out the most popular one (the one we went for) but I am of the opinion that a restaurant serving this quality of food should maybe give a little training to staff for drink pairings. This is probably me being really pedantic but I think it would really make this place the best place to eat at in Northamptonshire!

xo

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