Kerridge's Bar & Grill

Nick Beardshaw on Great British Menu 2023

In 2023, we saw our former Head Chef Nick Beardshaw compete on the hit BBC show, Great British Menu. The series brings together some of the UK's top chefs in a competition that celebrates the best of British cuisine. Judged by a mix of renowned culinary experts and celebrity guests, each dish is evaluated for taste, presentation and creativity. The ultimate goal? A spot in an exclusive banquet attended by a list of notable figures.

In its 18th series, Great British Menu drew inspiration from the 65th anniversary of Paddington Bear. Chef Nick flew the flag for the South West, making it all the way to the finals and clinching victory with his innovative fish course. Each of Nick's dishes drew inspiration from some of the country's most loved animations, artists and musicians. Here, we share the stories behind just a few...

Savoury Crocodile

"Having grown up loving Quentin Blake's illustrations in Roald Dahl’s books, I really wanted to do a dish that represented his work."

When Nick's wife, Rebecca, showed him Blake's illustration of the savoury crocodile, he felt compelled to recreate it.

His 'Savoury Crocodile' is a venison Wellington with a sausage, pistachio and apricot farce, and a layer of black pudding. Artichoke mash and grilled Hispi cabbage are served on the side.

The Wellington also comes with special gherkin gravy. Liquor from gherkins balances the gravy flavours, cuts through the richness in the dish and brings everything together seamlessly.

Savoury Crocodile at Kerridges Bar Grill 1

A Moon Shaped Pool

Nick's triumphant fish course was inspired by the cover of Radiohead's most recent album. Stanley Donwood created the cover art for 'A Moon Shaped Pool' by exposing his paintings to rain.

"Stanley wanted to create art that was less figurative and more a product of chance. He even went as far as leaving the canvases outside in the elements. The way the sheets melt and patterns form in a random and organic way is my nod to this."

Nick worked with wood crafters rewthink to design a prop that looked like a music album on a shelf. This housed a bowl with a dish underneath. Nick emphasised, "I always liked the idea of things not being all that they seem. I wanted the dish to be completely hidden with a reveal moment when the sauce is poured on."

The album consisted of two pieces of acrylic with a hole where the 'pool' was. Here, Nick placed a gelatine sheet which melted away when sauce was poured onto it, revealing the dish and aroma underneath.

'A Moon Shaped Pool' features a hand-dived Orkney scallop with Thai green velouté, salty fingers, marinated cucumber and Exmoor caviar.

Nick Beardshaw A Moon Shaped Pool

Balloon Girl

A tribute to world-renowned artist Banksy, Nick's 'Balloon Girl' is a feat of creativity and culinary expertise, but it took a little while for him to perfect it...

He began with the cheesecake -"I wanted it to be super silky, with the jelly in the centre as opposed to on the top. High-fat mascarpone was the answer, with vanilla, orange and lemon zest providing fragrance. The cheesecake layers are made up of raspberry and rose jelly, and salted oats, followed by a white chocolate and rose mirror glaze. The real challenge was getting them frozen and turned out in the timeframe!"

And then we had the balloon girl herself - "She was also tricky as she needed to be punchy and stand-out, but also balance the rich cheesecake. She ended up being created from raspberry and chocolate, fruit-heavy with tangy flavours."

This Banksy-inspired dessert couldn't be complete without the infamously shredded edges. Nick says, "The edible paper was something I thought of doing from the beginning but wanted it to be a relevant part of the dish. Zingy raspberry powder and yoghurt-coated popping candy tied it all together well and added an extra dimension of fun."

The Great British Menu judges praised Nick's 'Balloon Girl' as a "work of art".

Balloon Girl at Kerridges Bar Grill

Our first collection of artworks

Kerridge's Bar & Grill

Kerridge’s has unveiled its first collection of artworks, curated by gallerists West Contemporary.

The dining room showcases two major bronze sculptures by Beth Cullen-Kerridge, ‘Steve,’ and ‘Dorsal Angel’. Smaller works by Beth are also displayed within an art wall, also featuring a number of other West Contemporary artists including painters Chris Moon, Jim Threapleton, Carne Griffiths and Peter Ceredig-Evans, photographer P Gerard Barker and sculptor Mark Beattie.

Mixed-media artist Robi Walters, known for taking discarded objects and making them beautiful again, has created a variety of signature ‘petal’ pieces for Kerridge's using menus collected from the general public by Tom through his social media channels. These vary from wedding menus and first dates to souvenir menus from all over the world and have been used to create two bespoke table tops within the restaurant to help preserve, yet evoke new food memories for diners at the restaurant. A 4 x 4ft wall piece will be completed by Tom and Robi together on site, with a limited edition print signed by both the artist and the chef which will be made available later in the year.