The View from the Salthouse
One way to determine whether the restaurant you are visiting has a chef worth their salt, is by seeing how much the front of house staff know about the menu they serve. After all, the craft of cooking is something chefs are incredibly passionate about; and this enthusiasm for portraying incredible food should be shared.
Each month, the Salthouse holds a taster night for its team. Here, they learn all about the dishes that head chef, Luke Bailey, has created; where the ingredients have been sourced from, how every component complements each item on the plate, and showcasing the incredible variety of seasonal flavours Suffolk has to offer. Wines are also paired with each dish, so that the front of house team can confidently recommend suitable bottles to go alongside.
Luke has been an advocate of foraging for his ingredients for over a decade. Growing up around the river banks of the Deben, he joined funghi expert Peter Jordan in hunting out the most delectable and sought-after wild mushrooms in our very own county; bringing them back to his kitchen and discovering an exciting new approach to cooking. Nowadays, he frequents the same spots, as well as exploring new ones, to replenish his stocksof sea vegetables, elderflower and wild garlic– a Spring delicacy here in Suffolk, and an ingredient that will be widely featured on the hotel’s menu in the following months.
Local ingredients aren’t Luke’s only passion in his craft. Travelling the world has opened his eyes – and palate – to some sensational flavours, incorporated into dishes such as the Moroccan spiced butternut squash and red lentil soup with yoghurt and harissa; a popular dish on the Salthouse’s current menu, and a dish derived from his learnings during time spent with natives in the North African country. Luke has also been fortunate enough to spend time under world-renowned Nordic chef René Redzepi at four-time ‘world’s best restaurant’ Noma, Copenhagen – where his passion for foraging is shared.