Farmyard Confidential
Issue 03 - October 2017
It's not about Michelin stars

Over the course of my career, I've worked and eaten in a lot of different restaurants. Ranging from 40 cover Michelin starred, fine dining restaurants to bustling 250 cover brasseries. The top places all have great sourcing in common, which is what the Farmyard ethos is built on. As a chef, the best way I know of making sure everything we send from the kitchen tastes great is to work with quality ingredients. As a customer, I like to know that I'm spending my money on a beautiful piece of fish rather than fussy garnishes.

When I'm in the restaurant, I like to spend time speaking to our suppliers and finding out what's good now, then I train my chefs to work with fish, meat, game and veg in their natural state. My focus is 'fine produce' and not 'fine dining'. 

You'll often see just three things on a plate at Farmyard. I was told as a young chef that it's not what you add to a plate but what you can take away that makes a good dish. It took a long time for the wisdom of that sentence to influence my cooking. As my style has matured and my confidence has grown, I don't feel the need to keep adding, I'd rather take a garnish off the plate and let the quality of the produce do the talking. 

So now I leave foams, soils and gels to someone else and I cook for our guests, not guidebooks.


Medlar - the 'cat's arse' fruit

This unique fruit is a member of the apple family, like pears and quinces, and its distinctive shape gives rise to the rather unappealing nickname. As it is inedible from the tree, it needs to be 'bletted' before it can be eaten. This basically means putting the medlars in a straw lined box for a month or so until the fruit is soft. By then they taste sweet similar to dates or toffee apples. I like to make medlar jelly which makes a great accompaniment to cheese and game. Our medlars are bletting right now so look out for it appearing on the menu at the end of the month.

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Dementia friendly morning

We are really pleased to announce we are teaming up with the Norwich City Dementia Action Alliance to host a dementia friends coffee morning on Tuesday 10 October, from 9.30am to 11.30am. My wife Hannah lost her mother Brenda to dementia two years ago. Brenda was a big fan of dining out in Norfolk so friendly and understanding service in restaurants was always very welcome. We wanted to become 'Dementia Friends' at Farmyard when we heard about this great scheme.

The event is open to everyone and aims to increase awareness and understanding of the condition. Farmyard will organise a dementia friendly lunch four times a year for those living with dementia and their loved ones. It is free to attend but please contact info@farmyardrestaurant.com to book your place.

Norfolk Restaurant Week

From 30 October until 10 November (Yes, it's  two weeks!).

We have now finished buffing up our menu for the very first Norfolk Restaurant Week. We are going all out and serving à la carte dishes at set-menu prices for lunch and dinner. During this period, we are only offering this special menu and normal service will be resumed on Tuesday 14 November. To make this celebration of Norfolk restaurants even more special, Rob from CH Wine Merchants has paired a wine by the glass with each dish. Please click the green button below to view our special menu and booking details.

See our latest news about this event on Facebook.

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Christmas and New Year at Farmyard
The festive season is fast approaching and whilst you were busy planning BBQs and trips to the beach over the summer, we were turning our thoughts to mince pies and turkey. Bookings have already been brisk for December so book soon to ensure you don't miss out on having your Christmas party with us this year. Have a look at our Farmyard Christmas page for more details or contact info@farmyardrestaurant.com to book a table.

To kick start your New Year's Eve celebrations, we will be serving a six course tasting menu with an optional 'wine flight' on Sunday 31 December. We are taking bookings from 6.30pm until 8pm so you can dine with us before you see in the New Year. Keep an eye on our 
New Year's Eve
 page for details. 

What about giving Farmyard vouchers for Christmas? They are available in all denominations. Call us on 01603 733 188 or email info@farmyardrestaurant.com for details.
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Wine prize draw

Our wine expert, Rob Harrison from CH Wine Merchants, is gearing up for our second wine pairing dinner on Thursday 5 October. He has picked some stunning wines from the Languedoc area to try out this time round.

For this month's wine give-away, Rob has chosen a Fontanafredda Barbera ‘Briccotondo’ DOC 2014 from Piemonte in Italy. He says: "This is a deep rustic red with an aromatic, spicy nose of red fruits and damsons. It's medium bodied and soft, balancing structure to the blackberry and cherry flavours with a hint of liquorice. "

Congratulations Debra Boydell on winning a bottle of Domaine de la Rablais in our September prize draw!
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If you are a subscriber to our newsletter you are already entered into our monthly wine raffle. Why not invite your friends to sign up? As long as they promise to share it with you.
The winner will be announced in the next newsletter and on our social media pages.
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Farmyard Confidential archives

Farmyard Confidential - August, 2017

Farmyard Confidential - September, 2017