Lisa Goodwin-Allen inherited a kitchen at Northcote Manor which already had a fondness for game and all things local. Lisa worked under the founder of Northcote, Nigel Haworth and became accustomed to working with the best ingredients that the North West has to offer.
But, when it came to game this was a subject she knew well. She grew up with it and shared her father’s love of cooking it from an early age.
“I can remember my dad bringing home a brace of pheasants from work and my Nan would also cook them all the time. I loved the whole romance of game being something that came in all shapes and sizes and you never knew what would be next.
“What I love about game is its versatility. You really can take in any direction you want. Of course, there are classic, time-honoured recipes and I love them. But sometimes when you go out to dinner at somewhere like Northcote you are looking for a new experience and that’s what we do.
“The rack of venison is a showpiece and a good example of our approach. I did it on the Great British Menu recently. It’s a herb-crusted rack of venison, venison sausage, game chips, bread sauce and mulled beetroot. It has classic elements with a new twist. “
At Northcote we get a lot of duck coming in. It’s part of the region and what we’re known for. So teal, widgeon and wild mallard are pretty much always around. I feel very privileged to cook with them. These are species I didn’t come across as a child. The other thing we see now, which is really special, is snipe.
“One thing I have noticed is that grey-legged partridge are less common than they used to be. What we get comes from the Yorkshire moors. They are spectacular and so different from the red legged ones.”