Towards the end of last year, I was invited to The Noel in Whitwell by owner Claire and her husband Mark, who is also the chef. Claire and Mark have just celebrated their 11th anniversary at The Noel and their family-run business offers a spacious bar, large restaurant area, accommodation and a menu that isn't to be missed.
Nestled in the heart of the village of Whitwell in Rutland, The Noel's traditional exterior is quite different to the ultra-modern interior of The Noel today, which is a pleasant surprise upon entering.
Claire and Mark have given The Noel a unique feel which is light and modern with the use of reds, blacks and clever lighting which make the restaurant area feel cosy.
The Menu is one of the best offerings I have seen in the county. As a vegetarian I'm usually only ever able to choose from two items on a standard menu, however, at The Noel I was spoilt for choice - and that's a first for me! All at great value.
With starters, pasta, salads, steaks, curry, tagine, hotpot, small dishes, large dishes, sides and desserts there is something for everyone at The Noel and if you've got a few fussy fellas in your family I think it's the perfect place where you can guarantee something for everyone.
We began with a parsnip and gingers soup and bread with oils which was a lovely light starter and totally delicious! The ginger with the parsnip works so well and was a real winter warmer.
To start I wouldn't resist the wild mushroom vol-au-vent which was as you can see, beautiful. Flakey pasty and soft mushrooms - it was divine. The portion was a little large for me but it's better too much than not enough!
For main, I finally decided to go for the tomato onion and olive tagliatelle with pine nut and pesto dressing. The dish arrived and was bright with colour, full of vegetable and the perfect amount of dressing.
My partner decided on the rib-eye steak with chips, salad and peppercorn sauce. A thick and smooth sauce with what he described as 'the perfect medium-rare steak' came with thick traditional chips that are the ideal accompaniment for the rib-eye.
To finish, Tom couldn't leave without trying the chocolate compot with raspberry sorbet. It was absolutely beautiful! We both said a little 'Wow' when it arrived at the table. Topped with sugar work, the compot was the best he had ever tried and Tom was surprised how well the cool raspberry sorbet went with the spoon of rich chocolate.
We could not fault the service at The Noel, from entering you feel relaxed and calm and the service is quick and the food is fresh to order and arrives looking and tasting wonderful.
Food-wise, The Noel is not to be missed! It caters for all with lunch and evenings menu, children menus and Sunday Lunch.
The Noel is currently offering 'The Noel Winter Supper' which is served from 6:30pm to 8:00pm Tuesdays to Fridays, priced at £25 per couple. The 'Winter Supper' menu will be changed on a daily basis featuring local ingredients.
An interesting service The Noel offers is 'The Noel Outside'. Where their restaurant service comes to you for your party, wedding, event etc. Just give them a call on 01780 460347 the find out more!
I had a lovely time visiting The Noel and we enjoyed every second. I really can't recommend it enough for the spacious interior, large menu to suit all, generous portions, value for money, delicious food and friendly service.
Main Road, Whitwell, Rutland, LE15 8BW
T: 01780 460347