Bites EATING OUT IN RENOVATED MILLS

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The Independent Culture
Gavin's Mill, Gavin's Mill Road, Milngavie, Glasgow (0141-956 2255). Mon-Sat breakfast, lunch and dinner, Sun noon-10.30pm.

This all-day cafe, bar and restaurant in a 17th-century flour mill outside the city centre opened in February. Food has contemporary assurance, with high praise due to chef Karen McPherson for the ballottine of Tay salmon with fresh herb cream; pheasant breast with apple and blueberry compote; creme brulee with Hebridean malt whisky liqueur. Lunch starts at pounds 7.95; dinner from pounds 12.45 for one course, around pounds 20 for three. Sunday's all- day menu is pounds 12.95 for two courses, pounds 14.95 for three.

Honours Mill Restaurant, 87 High Street, Edenbridge, Kent (01732 866 757). Tue-Fri lunch and dinner, Sat dinner, Sun lunch.

Drinks or meals can be taken beside the millpond outside. The beams indoors are offset by crisp napery and fine, fairly classic cooking in a restaurant run by the Goodhew brothers (one of whom is swimming champ Duncan). Crab sausage with cucumber sauce, and magret of duck with lime, honey, chillies and citrus sauce are typically well-behaved dishes. Set price, limited- choice menu is pounds 12.50 for a two-course/pounds 15.50 for a three-course lunch, pounds 19.50 for dinner including coffee and petits fours. The main menu is pounds 32.75. Sunday lunch is pounds 23.50.

The Mill at Harvington, Anchor Lane, Harvington, Worcestershire (01386 870 688). Daily lunch and dinner.

A splendid red-brick Georgian house and mill with lawns down to the Avon. Informal lunches of great sandwiches are served in the bar. In the restaurant, good use is made of the top-notch local produce. The price of a three- course lunch or dinner is determined by that of the main course. Lamb with onion marmalade wrapped in cheese pastry is pounds 23.50; breast of chicken with sun-dried tomato and basil with red pesto and cream sauce is pounds 22.95.

Le Moulin de Jean, La Lande, Cuves, 50670 Saint-Pois, Basse Normandie (033 2 33 48 39 29). Mon-Sat lunch and dinner, Sun lunch. The Cherbourg- peninsula outpost of London-based chef Jean-Christophe Novelli is an idyll, two hours from the port (ring for directions first). The cooking follows the Novelli pattern of intensely flavoured (and salted) towers of layered ingredients. Pig's trotter is a fixture; cured salmon tartare with croque of cucumber, soft quail's egg, topped with caviar; and fillet of sea bass roasted in chorizo oil, with baby fennel and sun-dried tomato juice are typical. Prices are amazing: FFr95 (pounds 9.50) for two courses, FFr145 for three.

Sheene Mill Hotel & Brasserie, Station Road, Melbourn, Cambridgeshire (01763 261 393). Mon-Sat lunch and dinner, Sun lunch.

Next door to TV-chef Steven Saunders' Pink Geranium, this 17th-century watermill houses the brasserie side of his business. Perfectly positioned for waterside wedding receptions, Saunders' food is smart stuff. His ingredients are organic as far as possible, and the restaurant menu ranges from French onion soup, through sushi, to smoked duck fajita. Around pounds 18 for two courses. Sunday lunch pounds 18.50 for three courses. Snacks in the bar and conservatory around pounds 5.

Caroline Stacey

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