Food review - The Bateman’s Mill Hotel, Old Tupton, nr Chesterfield
- Credit: James Dowse
Derbyshire Life’s Lin Woodhouse take in a wonderful setting – and equally delicious food
A beautiful sunny day, a lovely drive in the country and a superb lunch courtesy of Batemans Mill - pure bliss.
The peaceful surrounds of the Mill, situated on the aptly-named Mill Lane, near Chesterfield, proved a perfect backdrop to a luxurious lunch and from Thursday onwards the full menu is available at lunchtime and evenings.
Not only does this wonderful venue serve excellent food, from light bites to the full menu, they have a great range of drinks on offer and you can book to stay as well.
This award-winning hotel and restaurant is great for walkers, hikers and cyclists - or for anyone looking to enjoy a peaceful weekend away in the beautiful Derbyshire countryside.
There are eight individually decorated bedrooms on site, with ample car parking for all.
Originally known as the Wood Thorpe Mill and built in 1831 as a corn/flour mill which processed corn for the local community, the Bateman family took over the tenancy in the 1880s but later sold the mill on.
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Just after the Second World War, the by now derelict mill was bought back by Samuel Henry Bateman and he integrated the outbuildings and used it for agricultural space until the early 1960s, when the bar and lounge areas were used as a motorbike repair shed.
In the 1990s Alan Bateman applied for planning permission to turn it into a hotel, which opened in November 1991 and was given the obvious name of Bateman’s Mill Hotel.
The original water mill wheel is still in the hotel and can be seen and heard in the bar area.
My colleague James and I sat down in a quiet corner of the bar to peruse the menu - spoilt for choice is not the word.
There’s something to suit every palate and we had great difficulty choosing, but choose we did.
Arancini risotto balls with basil, sundried tomatoes and mozzarella served with aioli and micro herb salad was James’ choice and certainly met with approval.
A crisp coating with a soft middle filled with rice and mozzarella that melted when he cut them open, the garnish was fresh while the sundried tomatoes were tangy and added depth to the flavours. The aioli blended perfectly with the garlic and the olive oil really came through.
I opted for tian of crab with plum tomatoes, cucumber, avocado, lemon, lime chilli and coriander.
A tantalising mix of flavours on the palate, it was light, refreshing and delicious - a perfect choice that set my taste buds alight for the main course.
For the main course my partner chose sea bream fillets with sauteed potatoes, green beans and a putanesca dressing of olives, anchovies, capers and sun-dried tomatoes.
James commented favourably on a beautifully cooked and flavoursome fish with a crispy skin. The sauteed new potatoes – a favourite of his - had real flavour, browned on the outside and light and fluffy on the inside.
Having not really come across putanesca before, but a huge fan of olives, James found that the flavours complimented the fish brilliantly.
My choice was Asian-style mussels – lemon grass, ginger, garlic, chilli cooked with coconut cream and served with a wedge of crusty bread and fries – I thought I had died and gone to heaven!
The mussels were beautiful and came out of the shell with ease. The sauce was luscious with ample crusty bread to dip into it. The fries were hot and crispy and all was beautifully served.
I must say the service was excellent. The waitress gave us time in between courses but not too long so that we were wondering when the next course would arrive, but enough that we did not feel rushed - ten out of ten for service.
Now to the sweet. Feeling rather full at this point but both being pudding lovers, my choice was not a difficult one to make - orange and amaretto pana cotta with raspberry sorbet, honeycomb and mint.
The pana cotta was rich and creamy but light with a hint of amaretto, not overpowering and fresh with the honeycomb and mint - a perfect choice to end a perfect dining experience.
James went for the apple charlotte served with clotted cream ice cream and berry compote and described the ice cream as deliciously creamy and the rich, thick, berry compote complimented the apple charlotte perfectly, enhanced with the warm smell of cinnamon. The casing was soft and buttery and the cooked apple interior tangy and delicious.
There were so many other dishes on this wonderful menu that we could have chosen – burgers, a choice from the grill menu, pies, pasta and venison steak to name but a few options.
I will definitely be returning and would highly recommend it to readers, you won't be disappointed.
Lovely location, excellent food, perfect service and a full belly – what more could you ask for?
The Bateman’s Mill Hotel, Mill Lane, Old Tupton, Chesterfield, Derbyshire, S42 6AE