You know you are proud of a dining experience when you are making a list in your head of all the people you can’t wait to invite for dinner.
That’s how we feel about Blue Smoke on the Bay. Simply great food, elegant surroundings with a warm and friendly atmosphere. There’s so much to celebrate here. During daylight hours the stunning view over Windermere and the Lakeland hills grab the limelight. However, after the sun has set, the star of the show really stands out and takes centre stage – the 3 metre long double wood-fired grill. This is where the real theatre takes place.
Cooking on wood is an ancient method of creating tasty no-nonsense food. There seems to be excitement on a global scale about re-discovering the delicious flavours that can be added to steaks, meats, fish and vegetables by using different types of sustainable woods. Getting the flavour and texture right relies very much on the science behind choosing the correct wood for the job. We met Stephen Talbot, Sales Director of Logs Direct, who shared a little bit about what is required for great wood-fired dishes.
We have come a long way from a company supplying fuel for wood-burning stoves locally to a nationwide supplier with a wide range of products. In 2007 we were approached by a representative on behalf of a celebrity chef to source the best wood for pizza ovens for use in cities and towns across the UK. Today we supply logs to over 1,000 pubs and restaurants the length and breadth of the country.
Over time and with lots of research we worked out the best wood with the perfect density, correct combustion, burn time, heat output and moisture content. Our aim was to achieve a result as near to smoke-free as possible with flavours that add significantly to the taste of the food. Top of the list, our recommended wood is Alder.
Alder has the best heat output and chefs have commented that it is faster than gas. Many have been amazed by the difference the correct wood can make to their cooking process. The low moisture content allows them to control and maintain the heat in their oven or grill with more precision. They are also delighted at having no spitting and smoking and they require far fewer logs than those that have not been through the kiln-drying process.
Importantly, Alder is the fastest growing hardwood. It takes only twenty years to reach maturity compared to the one hundred and fifty of the mighty oak. This makes environmental sense on a large scale. We source as much wood as we can locally from well-managed woodlands, where trees are grown in a sustainable way.
We do also supply oak to Blue Smoke on the Bay adding a different flavour. We have an Ariterm BioComp 200, 1.5-tonne boiler with integral 2-tonne kiln unit, designed and built by experts in Sweden and about ten times more powerful than a domestic boiler. This unit allows us to successfully dry our own British-sourced wood, which some customers prefer. British-sourced hardwood is difficult to find, so this gives us another string to our bow.
GOSLING’S RUM, CHILLI AND MUSCOVADO SUGAR CURED HOT, WOOD SMOKED SALMON
Just one of the dishes on the menu at Blue Smoke on the Lake
Blue Smoke on the Bay take Festive Lunch to a new wood-cooked level. It’s a great opportunity to come along experience our superb new menu and meet the team. Book a table by calling 015394 33338.
Lunch: 12.00pm - 2.30pm | Dinner: 6.30pm - 10.00pm