As style matters little without substance, it’s just as well that the food served here is on an equal footing with the surroundings. Executive Head Chef David Kelman has crafted a menu that basks in the excellence of British produce, classics that are refined enough to assimilate with the environs, yet taste like they have been cooked from the heart.
It must certainly be a pleasant place to work for David, whose cooking has gained the hotel 3 AA Rosettes. The Welsh chef has also received a number of local awards and can be seen competing on BBC2’s Great British Menu – a privilege indeed. As a member of Relais & Châteaux, Ellenborough Park is unashamedly luxurious and its proximity to smart Cheltenham and the racecourse gives it added appeal to a like-minded set. But while this gentrified 5 star spa hotel promises old-school indulgence, the traditional setting doesn’t extend to the dishes, which are fresh, modern and showcase local fare – examples include Rosary goats cheese from Salisbury and Chelbury mushrooms grown nearby.
The likes of Creedy Carver Duck Leg and Foie Gras with Pickled Girolles and Orange Dressing, or Roast Hereford Cross Beef Fillet with Cep, Thyme Fondant Potato, Golden Sprouting Broccoli, Confit Onion and Tarragon Jus satisfy the eye and sate the stomach. Expect to see David Kelman become the Crown Prince of the Cotswolds’ culinary scene in the not-too-distant future.