CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to Derbyshire Life today CLICK HERE

Dining out at Blenheim House Hotel and Restaurant, Etwall

PUBLISHED: 13:41 30 September 2014 | UPDATED: 13:41 30 September 2014

In document

In document


Seamless service and a cosy atmosphere help to create a special dining experience near Derby

In document In document

Blenheim House Hotel and Restaurant is situated in the village of Etwall, midway between Derby and Burton. A popular port of call for locals, holidaymakers and business travellers alike, in addition to a convenient location the venue is enhanced by the fact that it can cater for almost any occasion – whether it be an al fresco drink, a relaxing lunch, a more formal three-course dinner, a Champagne breakfast or a peaceful night’s sleep when exploring the area.

In a 18th century converted farmhouse, The Blenheim comprises a stylish bar area with inviting sofas, a choice of cosy eating spaces – including private dining rooms – and eight en suite bedrooms.

On the sunny evening of our visit, we were warmly welcomed by owners Philip and Helga Ritchie-Smith, who took over the business in 2011. We perused the menu in the bar area and marvelled at the restaurant’s vast wine list, which includes a mouth-watering variety of European and New World wines – many of which are available by the bottle or glass – and a selection of real ales.

When it comes to food, the evening menu is concise and offers a choice of six starters and six main courses, which can be accompanied by seasonal salad, chunky chips or fresh vegetables (£2.95 each). Saffron and leek risotto with creamed goat’s cheese and toasted seeds, or beetroot cured salmon with lemon emulsion, crispy onions and endive lettuce were just two of the tempting starters, whilst main courses included pan-fried sea bream, pak choi spring onions, enoki mushrooms, noodles and thai broth; or steamed turbot with buttered greens, brown shrimps, toasted almonds and new potatoes.


Following some helpful guidance from Philip, we relaxed with a drink whilst soaking up the surroundings. A smiling waitress then led us to our table in the main restaurant area, where exposed ceiling beams, dark furniture and a warm colour scheme create an intimate atmosphere. A fragrant platter of homemade bread in the centre of our table was a welcoming sight, and no sooner were we seated than our starters swiftly arrived.

My choice of pressed ham hock terrine (£5.95), served on a wooden board, had a deep meaty flavour enhanced by a generous serving of vibrant homemade picallili, bright green pea shoots and crispy walnut toast.

My partner declared his seared scallops (£6.95) to be sweet, fleshy, perfectly cooked and with just the right amount of ‘bite’. They were served with chunks of crumbled black pudding, creamy mashed potato and braised spring onions.

The Blenheim uses local, seasonal ingredients where possible and the menu’s list of suppliers includes some of the county’s finest producers such as Owen Taylor & Sons of Alfreton, South Derbyshire Growers and Etwall-based Happy Hens.

Pleasingly, my main course rack of lamb had been expertly cooked to let the freshness of the ingredients shine through. The intensely flavoured meat – served pink – was accompanied by a medley of Mediterranean vegetables, new potatoes, mint purée and an intense red wine jus.

My partner’s char-grilled rib-eye steak (£19.95), topped with tasty homemade red onion marmalade, was equally flawless, enlivened by melted stilton cheese and thyme jus. The Blenheim’s chunky chips are said to be renowned and they certainly lived up to expectations!

Portion sizes left just enough room for dessert. My partner’s dark chocolate and peppermint pavé (£5.95) – a devilishly rich, thick and velvet-like combination – was offset with mascarpone, drizzles of coffee syrup and biscuit crumbs.

My summery fruit salad was a mix of refreshing pineapple, orange and kiwi, crunchy honeycomb brittle, Champagne gelatine cubes and raspberry sorbet. Those who favour after-dinner drinks can choose from a wide range of port, liqueurs and hot beverages served with petits fours.

Considering the excellent standard of service, it was no surprise to learn that Blenheim House received a well-deserved TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence 2014.

Blenheim House, 56 Main St, Etwall DE65 6LP Tel: 01283 732254


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Derbyshire Life and Countryside visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Derbyshire Life and Countryside staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Derbyshire Life and Countryside account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More from Out & About

A ten-minute drive from the western edge of Sheffield brings thrill-seekers to a Derbyshire valley where outdoor activities are thriving.

Read more

Andrew Griffiths meets Jim Dixon, the former Chief Executive Officer of the Peak District National Park.

Read more

This walk offers a dance with the Dove and a meander by the Manifold, whilst along the way passing a church, castle remains, country houses and a hollow way

Read more

With winter on the horizon, trees glow with colour, migratory birds arrive and house spiders set off in search of a mate

Read more

Ann Hodgkin investigates a case of the sincerest form of flattery… or industrial espionage!

Read more

Derbyshire Wildlife Trust’s vision is of landscapes rich in wildlife, valued by everyone. They will achieve this 
by pursuing their mission of creating Living Landscapes. Here Julia Gow, the White Peak Reserve Officer at Derbyshire Wildlife Trust tells us about the reserve above the River Wye

Read more

Nigel Powlson visits Sudbury where a shopping courtyard is attracting even more visitors to this quintessential English village

Read more

If you’re walking in the Peak District, the chances are that you could encounter a reservoir at some point during your ramble. There are dozens of resevoirs dotted around all corners of the national park, we pick some of our favourite walks from our archive.

Read more
Peak District

A five-year Heritage Lottery-funded scheme, launched in 2010, was designed to encourage the restoration and conservation of the distinctive landscape character of a large area of north-east Derbyshire.

Read more

Enjoy the wonder of woodland in our glorious Derwent Valley on this park and ride special.

Read more

Paul Hobson reveals some of the fascinating wildlife there is to be found in this month of transition

Read more

From far away constellations to gas clouds, our night skies are bursting with natural wonders – if you know where to look... Viv Micklefield goes stargazing in Derbyshire

Read more

Derbyshire Wildlife Trust works across six Living Landscapes with 46 nature reserves to ensure there is wildlife and wild places for everyone. Reserve officer Sam Willis tells us about one of his favourite places – Ladybower Wood Nature Reserve

Read more

A multi-million pound makeover attracts more leading brands to one of the UK’s biggest shopping destinations

Read more

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Subscribe or buy a mag today

Topics of Interest

Local Business Directory

Property Search