ONE of Yorkshire’s most luxurious boutique hotels and restaurants has made a very sharp addition to the menu!
The Wensleydale Heifer in West Witton, near Leyburn, has taken delivery of one of the largest fresh swordfish to be reeled in in local waters – a whopper weighing in at 32kg or over 70llbs.
The gargantuan catch was line caught and landed in an area called FAO27, (Food and Agriculture Organisation) which makes up the fishing grounds around the UK, France and Northern Spain. Swordfish of this size are unusual in these waters, with whoppers such as this more usually landed in the Pacific.
It was landed by Spanish fishermen aboard the Fasciniosi Do Mar before being brought into the UK at one of the UK’s largest fishing ports, Brixham, in Devon.
Owner and Chef at the Wensleydale Heifer David Moss said: “It is unusual to see a fish of this size and we leapt at the chance to be the lucky restaurant to use such wonderfully fresh and fantastic quality fish on our menu.
“To make sure we maximise the flavour and texture and really showcase this fantastic fish in all its glory, our chefs will treat it simply – a simple char grill cook with prawns in a light garlic butter, served with a simple salad and some frites. We can’t wait!
“Around 100 lucky people will be able to enjoy this freshest of swordfish as we estimate that’s how many portions we will be able fillet.”
The fish was supplied by Hodgson Fish, the North-East’s largest independent fish wholesalers and fishmongers and who are based in Hartlepool.
Their Business Development Manager Keith Thornton said: “When we knew we had such a fantastic and unusual fish making its way to the UK, we knew we wanted to make sure it went to a restaurant where it would be used in the very best way.
“We pride ourselves on providing the very best quality fresh fish to our customers, and the Heifer is known for its focus on quality always, so we knew this was the right place for such a special fish. We know the dishes it is used in will really showcase it in the very best way.”
The Wensleydale Heifer has form for working with huge fish. In 2011, it hit the record books for preparing and cooking a world-record beating portion of fish and chips weighing in at a massive 101lbs.
David added: “With the anniversary of that great achievement coming up, fans of huge fish with great flavour should watch this space!”
The Wensleydale Heifer has been named as a finalist in this year’s White Rose Awards in the Small Hotel of the Year category. It holds five AA stars.