The Spiced Pear in Hepworth is the new family venture of Timothy Bilton, who has previously had a successful five years at the Butchers Arms gastro-pub, also in Hepworth.
This new venture promises seasonal cooking with local produce. The Spice Pear has a an elegant cocktail bar, a tastefully furnished restaurant, and a 1940s style tea room. Outside there is a small patio with great views of the Yorkshire countryside, and to the side of the main restaurant, a small courtyard with tables. Score: 4/5.
We recently visited the Spiced Pear for lunch and had an excellent meal. The weather was fantastic so we sat outside in the courtyard.
There are a choice of menus: the main A La Carte menu, a fixed price Yorkshire Menu with selections from the main menu, and the FourTeas menu, with a selection of all day breakfasts, snacks, sandwiches and afternoon teas.
I decided to have the fixed price Yorkshire menu, and my lunch partner went with two of the starters from the main menu.
There was a slightly flat start to the meal, as prior to the arrival of the first courses, we were offered some home made granary bread which turned out to be rather insipid and dry. We didn't eat it and sent it back with the waiter when the first courses arrived! However, the first courses were excellent. My partner had Asparagus and Spinach Risotto which came with Crispy Confit Chicken Wings and garnished with parmesan cheese slices. Apart from being slightly under seasoned the risotto was very good and nicely complimented by the crispy confit skin and succulent boneless chicken meat. I had Fresh William Pear and Onion Tart Tatin made with Shepherds Purse Yorkshire Blue, Walnut, Poppy Seed and Wild Flower Honey Salad. This was also first class.
For the main course, I had the Corn Fed Chicken Supreme Stuffed with Barncliffe Brie and Sage, Truffle Tagliatelle, Creamed Chicken Veloute, Summer Peas and Broad Beans. The chicken was beautifully tender, flavoursome, moist and succulent, but the veloute sauce was rather thin, and there was not much flavour of truffle in the pasta. My partner had the starter portion of King Prawn and Cornish Crab with Cocktail, Avocado, Mango and Passion Fruit Salsa which she found very enjoyable. We also shared a side dish of Fat Chips, which were crisp and tasty - actually I ate all the chips!
As I was having the three course Yorkshire menu at £16.00, we decided to share one of the desserts - the English Strawberry Cheese Cake with Compote of Summer Strawberries and Refreshing Sorbet. This was a well presented and balanced dessert, packed full of strawberry flavour. I must confess, that having eaten the chips, I left most of the dessert to my partner.
Lunching outside in good weather certainly adds to the enjoyment of a meal. The service was friendly and attentive, but perhaps a little slow (maybe because we were outside), and apart from the few cooking slips mentioned above, we had a thoroughly enjoyable lunch experience. The adjacent table had two ladies who had one of the set afternoon tea menus with sandwiches and cakes - this also looked great.
We drank a diet coke, a bottle of lager, and a glass of decent house Malbec, and this came to just under £50 without service - we would certainly go back again.
Score: Food: 4/5. Service: 4/5. Overall: 4/5