Lake District restaurants
Famed hunter John Peel's favorite grub is said to have been Tatie Pot (potatoes, onions, black pudding, and Herdwick mutton), but for many years, the dish was almost impossible to find in even the most traditional inns. Now, vigorous efforts are being made to promote the flavorful mutton and lamb of the hardy Lakeland Herdwicks. There is nearly always a Herdwick dish on the menu at the Wasdale Head Inn, some of them quite surprising—try the strawberry pâté.
The Cumberland sausage also has deep roots here. In the backwater village of Waberthwaite, Richard Woodall makes the long strips of pork-and-herb sausage and cured hams that his family has produced for eight generations (Lane End, Waberthwaite, near Millom; 44-122-971-7237; www.richardwoodall.co.uk). Wash them down with a pint of real ale from Jenning's Brewery in nearby Cockermouth (Castle Brewery, Cockermouth; 44-845-129-7190; www.jenningsbrewery.co.uk).
Even if you aren't staying at any of the establishments listed below, all offer food to warm a hiker's heart. And remember: Every single one of the inns recommended in the Hotels section generally has an excellent restaurant as well. You won't go hungry in Cumbria.