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Lake District Restaurants

Herdwick Inn
England CA11 0QU
Tel: 44 176 848 3007

Unprepossessing from the outside and rather near the highway, this 18th-century inn has a cozy interior and an impressive pub/restaurant. Dishes run from the refined (pork liver pâté, baked local salmon with chive and lemon white wine sauce) to the hearty and veddy British (lamb shoulder braised in Jennings Cumberland Ale, pan-fried steaks, roasted crispy half-duckling). When the inn changed ownership in June 2006, vegetarian selections were added to the menu, including a braised leek and creamed mushroom crumble and spiced vegetable curry with broccoli, cauliflour, carrots, and potatoes. To tipple, there's a good range of single malt Scotch whiskeys, Jennings real ales, and a fine selection of wines. Upstairs are five comfortable bedrooms under wood beams.

Mortal Man Inn
England LA23 1PL
Tel: 44 153 943 3193

A favored inn in the Troutbeck Valley since 1689, the Mortal Man is known for fabulous views down the valley to Lake Windermere. The restaurant prides itself on serving massive portions of traditional local specialties such as roast shoulder of Cumbrian lamb, served with onion puree, pomme fondant and green peas. The large bar offers simpler pub grub, like a smoked trout fillet with a spring vegetable salad in creamy tomato dressing and a Cumberland sausage baguette sandwich, topped with grilled onions and ale gravy. All 12 guest rooms get the celebrated vistas, but the best panoramas are provided by the ones on the top floor.

Queen's Head Hotel
Main Street
England LA22 0NS
Tel: 44 153 943 6271

In the dining room of this traditional coaching inn, built in 1548 in the town where Wordsworth went to grammar school, the emphasis is on organic lake trout from Esthwaite Water, as well as local favorites such as wild Graythwaite estate pheasant, cured hams and Cumberland sausage, Herdwick lamb, local venison, haggis, black pudding, and fresh cheeses. The inn also rents 13 rooms and is a convenient base for exploring Near Sawrey (where Beatrix Potter lived), Esthwaite Water, Grizedale Forest, Claife Heights, and Tarn Hows.

St. Johns Restaurant and Bar at the King's Head
King's Head Inn
England CA12 4TN
Tel: 44 176 877 2393

There are two choices for dining at this 17th-century coaching inn. The more elegant St. Johns Restaurant offers panoramic views of St. Johns in the Vale and dishes made from the freshest of local ingredients. The popular lamb shank is marinated in Jennings bitter and accompanied with potatoes and seasonal root vegetables. In the more laid-back bar room, with ladder-back chairs under a beamed ceiling, you can nosh on traditional cod and chips or a local Borrowdale trout dish, accompanied by beer a Cumberland or Cockerhoop Ale. The inn also offers 17 rooms with original oak beams and Inglenook fireplaces. There is a separate poolroom with a big-screen TV for major sporting events.

St. Johns Restaurant open for dinner only; pub open for lunch and dinner.

Three Shires Inn
Little Langdale
England LA22 9NZ
Tel: 44 153 943 7215

This traditional slate inn of 1872 occupies a fabulous location at the heart of the Langdales with views over Tilberthwaite fells. The popular stone-floored bar serves a wide selection of ales and whiskies, as well as good food. Edibles range from lunch at the bar—Cumberland sausages, roast ham, homemade fish-cakes—to dinner in the more refined restaurant, where a meal might consist of smoked breast of wood pigeon, a poached fillet of red sea bream in lemongrass and ginger, or roast leg of Lakeland lamb served with a garlic confit and mint-scented jus. Too full to move? There are also ten rooms and one self-catering cottage for rent.

Restaurant open for dinner only; bar open for lunch and dinner.

Information may have changed since the date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.