Game is all about the seasons.
Galton Blackiston, owner of Morston Hall in Norfolk, has had game on his menu for as long as he can remember. To him every type of game has a role to play and a place on his menu.
“It’s all about the seasons,” he told The Great Game Guide. “I’m passionate about field sports and I love shooting but what I shoot must end up in the pot at the end of the day.
“At Morston Hall we have a slightly unusual set-up. We only do 50 covers a night and that is made up of a set menu of eight courses. I wouldn’t call it a tasting menu. From the first day of the grouse season to the last day of shooting in January we have piece of game on the menu as part of the set offer.
“I love grouse, partridge, pheasant, hare and teal. They are all persona favourites though I think the teal is my absolute favourite. It’s a small duck but its highly flavoured and the taste can really depend on where the birds have been feeding. We’re on the coast here in Norfolk which is marshy and wet and very well suited to ducks.
“Basically, throughout the season whatever I get offered in the way of game I invariably use it but what we do on the menu is different to what I do at home. To me roast pheasant for Sunday lunch is my all time favourite. I served it the old-fashioned way with bread sauce and bacon. It’s truly delicious.
“But in the restaurant we’d do it a little more luxuriously. Probably a ballotine cooked in the water bath (because game has a tendency to be dry if you’re not careful.) We will invariably use some foie gras or truffle and make an amazing sauce from the bones.
“Game is a celebration of seasonality. It challenges us in the kitchen and inspires us to do it justice.”