[AD – PR invite – but views entirely my own]
The Coolstone, Eyam is a wonderful day to night time restaurant, bar and coffee shop nestled around an attractive, historic courtyard next to Eyam Hall.
Proudly independent, The Coolstone, Eyam prides itself on expert knowledge whether that’s the professional mixologist whipping up cocktails at the bar or the kitchen garden where everything from beetroot to edible flowers are grown. It’s a winning combination.
Outside The Coolstone there’s a pretty courtyard with lots of seating. We visited on a sunny summer’s afternoon and there were definite holiday vibes. Something I think we are all craving after this crazy year. If you aren’t going away this year but desperately wish you were, you could do a lot worse than a sunny day spent here. There are even deckchairs if you fancy a proper lounge! It’s the perfect place to unwind after a long walk in the Peak District, or a potter around the pretty village of Eyam.
It’s pretty in the day but would be really special at night. The courtyard is studded with olive trees, dressed in twinkling lights and there’s lots of festoon lighting.
The courtyard and bistro downstairs are very family friendly. Dogs are welcome outside. There were lots of water bowls dotted about and there’s some really cute little beach huts if you wanted to eat outside with your four legged friend but wanted some shelter from the elements. For 60+ dog friendly places to eat in Derbyshire click here.
There’s a spiral staircase to the first floor restaurant which hosts slightly fancier evening dining. From here there’s a gorgeous view of Eyam Hall, and the old beams are beautifully decorated and studded with fairy lights.
Did it feel safe post-lockdown?
The ample outside space make this a really good option for those who are still feeling cautious post lockdown. All the safety measures were in place and being adhered to. There’s track and trace QR codes to scan at the entrance to the bar, lots of hand sanitiser dotted about and so on. I felt entirely safe.
Expertly mixed cocktails at The Coolstone Eyam
I’d been really impressed with the cocktails on a previous visit so knew I wanted to sample another. I really couldn’t decide so went for a classic mojito which was beautifully executed and served in a lovely heavy glass tumbler.
My friend ordered a ‘Plague Village’ named after Eyam’s gory history which features their very own Spirit of Eyam gin (coincidentally distilled by Cuckoo Stone spirits which I have blogged about previously here) and came with it’s very own teapot of coke to pour to your own taste.
Menu at The Coolstone Eyam
Menus change regularly and are based on seasonal, mainly local produce. There’s an evening, bistro menu and an ‘easy time’ menu served from 12 until 8.
I’d been invited to sample some of the dishes from their new menu so we actually got to sample four main courses between us!
My stand out favourite was a starter dish of a fish cake served with a beautifully creamy yet piquant nduja sauce. No stodgy excessive potato packing here – just a mix of beautiful fish shaped into a patty and then fried off. So simple but oh so good.
Next up, sliders! There were three different ‘mini’ burgers – a cheeseburger, a lamb and mint burger and then a crispy fried chicken burger. Each thoughtfully garnished with appropriate sauces and salad. Each was delicious and really tasty. I was surprised by how big they were. This was definitely a dish for someone with a big appetite (or perfect for refueling after a long walk maybe). These were served with truffle, parmesan fries – one of my absolute favourite things in life!
The lamb kofta was another huge portion. This was well seasoned and served with a range of accompaniments – delicious fresh flat bread, a portion of fries, a side salad (which I was delighted to see included some sunblush tomatoes) and a yogurt dip. If I was being critical I’d have liked the dip to have a stronger garlic flavour but it was perfectly adequate and did complement the lamb.
My vegetarian friend enjoyed a delicious Thai style curry with roasted cauliflower. It was packed full of lovely colourful vegetables and served with fluffy white rice. This dish was actually vegan too.
We really didn’t need any dessert, but on a previous visit I’d enjoyed an amazing strawberry parfait served with Pimms syrup strawberries and minted cucumber. The whole dish worked together wonderfully but the minted cucumber was utterly divine. An inspired dessert! I’m not sure this is still on the menu, but even if it isn’t, I would recommend the desserts based on that alone. Honestly it was impeccable and I’m still thinking of it a year later!
We sat in the courtyard for hours afterwards drinking coffee and chatting. We both agreed we felt like we were on holiday. It was the perfect wind down after a busy week and we both agreed we’d return soon.
A day out in Eyam
The Coolstone is a real destination in itself. You could while away most of the day here eating and drinking to your heart’s content.
If you want to make a day of it to justify the drive out (or perhaps to work up an appetite) Eyam is a really pretty village that’s lovely for a potter or a more bracing hike in the stunning local countryside. In addition to everything on offer at The Coolstone, there is also a decent tearoom and a good coffee shop in the village.
Eyam is famous for isolating itself during the bubonic plague of the 17th century, there’s a small museum focused on this gory yet fascinating history not far from The Coolstone.
Brilliant cocktails, delicious food and a great atmosphere.
Free parking just across the road (including an overspill car park). S32 5QW. No bookings required to eat in the courtyard. You can book an inside table here or find out more at The Coolstone website.