Me and Chris have been on quite a few walks in Derbyshire now, we spent an entire year last year doing at least one each week and have managed to keep up that trend in 2018. Bakewell has been a starting point for many a hike, especially in the early days. I remember when we were fairly new to this rambling malarkey, we would set out at 7am, aimlessly wandering for a quick breakfast before heading to a trail. And to begin with, Bakewell was our ‘trial and error’ destination. Now I won’t go in to too much detail, but I would like to think we have cracked this breakfast game, knowing where the best spots are, and more importantly -if they are open early enough for us. And these spots, are not in Bakewell. So, after having a few bad (greasy spoon) experiences in Bakewell, I wasn’t totally optimistic when Chris suggested we lunch there after our hike.
I know I am not the only person out there that does this, but as soon as Chris told me we were heading to The Pointing Dog and Duck, I quickly fired up google to get some pictures and a peak at the menu (and peace of mind). Aaaaaand, relax. From the photo’s this place looks great, located in an old saw mill by the river in Bakewell town centre just next to a public car park, it’s visually, very impressive. So, when we had finished our 20-mile hike (you may notice that from time to time I will fabricate the distance ACTUALLY walked) we headed over to The Pointing Dog and Duck for our well-earned meal.
This place is gorgeous. We were lucky because we had great weather today, and The Pointing Dog and Duck are certainly equipped for that. Beautiful outdoor seating overlooking the river and with the sun shining down, it’s the perfect place to waste a few hours watching the world go by with a pint in your hand – do I hear bank holiday plans being made?
We walked across a small bridge to the entrance, and through a big glass door, that allows floods of natural light to wash over this perfectly refurbished building, into the main dining room. We were greeted instantly, and as my eyes are trying to take it all in, we are shown to a table near one of the huge windows that look out on to the river. Looking around, its not hard to notice the bar set back in a beautiful stone arch, its clear while The Pointing Dog and Duck have certainly modernised their restaurant, they have still retained a lot of the original features, making it very aesthetically pleasing.
We take a look at the menu and in what feels like the quickest time ever (possibly even a record for us) we are ready to order. I go for the flaked mackerel, with lemon, crème fraiche and capers on sourdough and Chris opts for the soy marinated duck with radish and spring onion noodle salad. For our mains we go for something off the ‘Light bites’ menu – I order the courgette, quinoa, cumin and goats cheese fritters, and Chris orders the Plaice goujons, brown crab mayo and skinny fries.
The food was fantastic, both of my courses were well presented and accurately described. The courgette fritters were beyond expectation and had a great texture that I couldn’t get enough of! Chris absolutely loved his duck and noodle salad, and his plaice goujons -which I pinched a bit of after he told me how good it was… and I have to agree, it felt like guilt-free fish and chips, but a bit posher. The whole meal was lovely. We managed to show some restraint and took a pass on dessert- which I now regret because the dessert menu looked so good. But I would definitely return, maybe even for that pint in the sunshine!