Back in May CGC, with Beverley Racecourse, embarked on a partnership with Chef Patron of Winteringham Fields, Colin McGurran. The Attraction Restaurant, popular with local racegoers and regular revellers alike, normally offers an a la carte menu with great British classics such as sirloin steak with mushroom, vine tomato and hand cut chips and roast sirloin of beef with Yorkshire pudding and trimmings. For the 2017 race season, racecourse diners were able to enjoy a taste of the mouth-watering food served at Michelin-recommended Winteringham Fields whilst enjoying a great day out at one of Yorkshire’s leading leisure venues.
From left to right clock wise: Colin’s beef dish, Colin seasoning his dishes, Colin in the kitchen with Andrew and Gavin of CGC.
Winteringham Fields is a fully functioning farm and staff are encouraged to take an active part in the cultivation of their produce. Anything that cannot be grown or reared on site is sourced locally, a philosophy the chef refers to as their ‘One-Mile Menu’, and we were keen to ensure these catering principles were applied to our partnership. Colin and his team undertook four training sessions with our staff, educating them on his ethos, cooking techniques, presentation and service to the highest standard.
Two signature dishes were served in the Attraction Restaurant throughout the season, crafted by Colin and prepared by our chefs, initially under his supervision and ultimately on their own. Diners had the choice of roasted rump of lamb, confit belly, new season pea salad, red chicory & romesco sauce, or slow braised beef cap, lovage pomme Purée, roasted shallots, bone marrow & bordelaise sauce. All the ingredients are sourced from Winteringham Fields to ensure the finest quality.
From left to right clock wise: Colin’s lamb dish under the hot lamp, Colin leaving the kitchen, Attraction Restaurant at Beverley Racecourse
The second element was a full kitchen takeover on the Season Closer, bringing Colin’s famous 7 course tasting menu to the Attraction Restaurant, preceded by a luxury gin reception courtesy of our friends at Sloemotion. The menu, which was kept a secret until the day, was crafted to perfectly complement an afternoon at the races, with light, invigorating courses including a beetroot mousse with chicken liver parfait, pan-roasted gild head bream & a 78% chocolate delice with praline mousse & mint ice-cream. Experience was central, with diners on shared tables; the maître d’ announcing each course as it was set down; ‘novelty’ courses such as the tomato gazpacho, crafted beautifully to look like a tomato but in reality something different; & the use of liquid nitrogen in a raspberry bomb palate cleanser, delighting our own staff and diners alike. Given that this was an event designed to attract new racegoers, we also gave a tipping talk before lunch & ensured courses were staged around races. Guests were invited to the paddock to choose a Best Turned Out and present the trophy.
The campaign for places was deliberately exclusive, opening an guest list that interested parties could register to be on, which we promoted to our own and Winteringham Field’s mailing lists. We then opened bookings one day earlier to this guest list than the general public.
From left to right clock wise: raspberry bomb palate cleanser, diners being talked through the dishes, tomato gazpacho, table setting, waitress serving liquid nitrogen dish, wild Balmoral venison with spiced red cabbage and mortaux sausage pave
The signature dishes have been a great success in the restaurant, with over 600 ordered through the season and feedback consistently excellent. Over 25% of diners at each meeting on average have chosen the signature dish and some repeat diners have chosen it every time they visit. Attendances have been at a record high in the restaurant this season, with 100% of meetings sold out since launching.
The event has proved a great success; places sold out for the 7 course tasting menu within an hour of going on sale. Tim Wray, Director of Outside Catering at CGC said of the collaboration “Whilst the level of dining offered was already good, this link up has inspired our staff to look to another level. Two or three are on a trainee management programme and it so enthused them to see how Michelin recommended food was prepared & presented. As far as we are concerned this is just the start.” To view the full album of images of the season finale Winteringham Fields event, you can view this on Facebook.
To view a full list of Beverley Racecourse’s 2018 fixtures please visit their website
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