On the train to gourmet treat

Graham Mitchell - head chef, Hassop Station Cafe
Graham Mitchell - head chef, Hassop Station Cafe

Hassop Station Café has earned a reputation as a highlight for cyclists and walkers alike. Now it is proving a honeypot for diners too, following the appointment of an acclaimed head chef.

And the Monsal Trail café is introducing its new star with a five-course gourmet treat...

Graham Mitchell has forged an illustrious career since training at Sheffield’s Castle College.

His first job was at the Walnut Club in Hathersage, under respected chef Nick Wilson. He eventually succeeded Nick as head chef, then later rejoined his mentor at a series of high profile restaurants nationwide.

He gained Michelin starred experience at the Yorke Arms near Harrogate, returning home a couple of years ago to get married.

Since then he has headed kitchens at the Chequers in Froggatt and The Schoolrooms in Lower Bradfield, before alighting on Hassop Station Café.

The old station building, which later became a bookshop, was refurbished and relaunched four years ago by owners Duncan and Rebecca Stokes.

It continues to sell books and gifts, but has also become a popular watering hole in the middle of the Peak District countryside, known for its scones, cakes and rustic daily menu.

“I’m excited about taking charge, with all the great local suppliers, the countryside and seven-and-a-half miles of wild fruits down the Monsal Trail that we will be taking full advantage of for our Christmas hampers,” says Graham.

He will be showing off his culinary skills during the tasting evening when guests will tuck into five courses of gastronomic delights, plus a welcome glass of Prosecco, at £35 per person.

Highlights will include cod with lime and caviar; pork with chorizo; and a terrine of marshmallow, tarragon and lemon curd with pistachio mousse.