Winter Fuel

The Dining Room at the Gloucester Campus at Gloucestershire College is in many ways one of the best places I have ever eaten at in an educational institution. They use fresh ingredients and cook the food everyday. There is no pre-processed food here, well not too much. There are usually at least three options on the menu. A recent meal was homemade Lancashire Hotpot served with mashed swede and carrot and cabbage.

Lancashire Hotpot served with mashed swede and carrot and cabbage

Perfect food for a cold winter’s day. The lamb was very tender and full of flavour, the potatoes on the top were cooked through with crispy edges. Overall a delicious meal and excellent value at £3.10.

It’s not the best educational place I have eaten at though (and remember I haven’t eaten everywhere). I use to work at City of Bristol College in the 1990s (or as it was back then Brunel College) and they, like a lot of colleges had a training restaurant. I never use to eat there for lunch, as they did full silver service, you had to have three courses and as a result needed a couple of hours for lunch, and even back then no one had that sort of time for lunch. Then one year a decision was made to move the restaurant from a silver service restaurant to a bistro approach. As a result you could have just a main course and service speeds were much faster, so you could order, eat and pay the bill in about 30 minutes, perfect for a lunchtime in a busy college day. It was also so much nicer than eating a sandwich at your desk. The food was excellent, I remember it been cooked to perfection and seasoned correctly and delicious. There was something rather nice about having a restaurant quality meal for lunch during a busy day, had a really positive impact on morale.

Alas it was a short term venture and before we really grasped what a good idea it was, the concept was reversed. The result, we stopped going there for lunch.

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