by Fiona Duncan-Steer

New Chef New Menu At Merchants, Lace Market Hotel

New Chef New Menu At Merchants, Lace Market Hotel

The popular Nottingham city central boutique hotel Lace Market Hotel have recently appointed a new chef who has subsequently revamped their menu with a personalised twist…

Chef Luke Holland joins the team taking over the kitchen with his new menu- A Chef’s Life: 1987-2018, with each dish inspired by different events and hi lights in Luke’s life, drawing on his personal happy memories for each dish in turn to evoke different tastes taking the guest on a journey of A chef’s life- a very personal and different angle to a menu and one I have not seen done this way.

The seven course taster menu includes treacle bread and Lincolnshire poacher butter to start -treacle bread being a new one for me but very nice all the same.

Next came Fishing For Mackerel- 1996 drawn from Luke’s memory of spending time on the wash in his Grandpa’s boat aged 7, with the dish consisting of mackerel, green tomato, radish, nastutium and lime.  My vegetarian alternative was grated celeriac served in melted seasoned butter with truffle oil.

Summer BBQ with the boys- 2007 comes next evoking memories of his days in the Royal Marines with the dish surrounding Aged beef, mustard, shallot, apple and charcoal.  The veggie option was a delicious goats curd with tomato and three types of fresh basil including Italian, Indian and red served with basil oil.

Next comes Home Sweet Home- 2014 – relating to Luke setting up home in Melton Mowbray offering with this dish spring lamb, broad beans, asparagus and morels.  Main course for me was a tasty risotto with sheep’s cheese, hazelnut and truffle.


Fifth course was an unusual very distinctly tasting palate cleanser of apple, tarragon and liquorish aptly names Picking Apples in the Orchard- 2015.

The final course – Grandpa’s greenhouse-2016 Remembering Grandpa- fond memories of days spent helping in his greenhouse- drawing on heartfelt emotions for his innovative dessert creation of garden pea, white chocolate, water mint and coconut which despite the non conventional dessert related ingredients really worked.

We also enjoyed cocktails from the new menu during the evening opting for the ‘Perfume of Sicily’  containing Limoncello, Pinot Grigio, lemon juice and sugar and the ‘Smoked Old Fashioned’ made up of Wild Turkey bourbon, sugar and bitters which is served in a beautiful crystal cut carafe, with smoke pumped into it from the bars brand new gadget.

The service at Lace Market hotel is always warm and friendly and feels like home from home whenever I visit, it really is a place you can take a seat and its yours for the night, making it far too easy to make your way through their extensive and impressive cocktail menu.

After their recent refurbishment the venue itself is looking stunning too and so I cannot recommend it highly enough, whether going for cocktails the new taster menu or an overnight stay.