Where? The Kings Head Hotel is a luxe hotel and restaurant serving modern British food at 24 Market Place, Cirencester, GL7 2NR.
When? The building has hotel roots going back to the 14th century but it reopened last autumn as luxury boutique hotel following a £7 million renovation. We went for a Sunday evening dinner.
What we ate?
The menu is perfect for sharing. There’s a smaller nibbles section with bites like sticky lamb ribs and the braised pig’s head with tarragon mayo – both utterly delicious. Then there’s the Robata Grill menu, where most of the dishes have some element cooked using the traditional Japanese barbecue method. We tried asparagus with egg and bacon, scallops with chorizo and cauliflower, parmesan gnocchi with spring veg and wild garlic and the sirloin steak. It’s a real fine dining affair with traditional British ingredients given a punchy makeover. For dessert, we could only manage one to share – a deliciously chocolate fondant, the perfect ending.
Food envy? The venison with braised red cabbage, chocolate and hazelnuts sounds and looks pretty spectacular.
What’s it like inside? The hotel has a fun, laidback atmosphere, more buzzy in the bar than the restaurant. It’s a very chic place. The food is excellent and it’s even more of a treat if you stay over. The rooms are impeccable, with so many lovely little touches – the welcome gin tray blew us away! The new spa is another big reason to visit.
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Head chef Dave Watts says: “We’ve done a concept change, moving away from your standard starter, main, dessert to more of a selection of foods flowing throughout the menu. Our new menu aims to encourage people to sample smaller bites and share amongst friends in more of a tasting style. We want to offer our guests a free flowing, relaxed dining experience.
Alongside this, we also offer a set menu. We want our dishes to be the topic of conversation and our diners to feel more involved. It’s that simplicity and the idea of more thoughtful cooking. At the heart of the dishes are their strong flavours, which speak for themselves in a simple uncomplicated way.”
You’ll like it here if you like… Locally sourced food, traditional British fare with a modern twist.
Nibbles from £2.95 Sharing plates from £4.45 Desserts from £4.45