Ask any Lake District explorer, walker, wanderer. If there’s one thing to rival the anticipation of touching a summit cairn, it’s an eagerly awaited snack. Reaching into your rucksack pocket for that satisfying crackle… Why is it everything tastes even better in the fresh air? From famous Lake District snacks, to the soul-warming items we’ve put in your rooms to encourage you on your way, the right bites in your day pack make everything feel more possible.
Scientific evidence backs up the anecdotal. Research shared by Harvard Medical School explains that when we’re engaged in physical activity and ‘visualisations of tranquil scenes’, the Parasympathetic Nervous System triggers our state of rest and digest. Directly contrasting with the all-too-familiar fight or flight stress response, it’s a time of calm and smooth-running bodily processes. Thought you were salivating over that tucked-away Tunnock’s Teacake? It was the view all along.
For hikers with bigger ideas, sugary snacks are essential. To reach the top of Scafell Pike (England’s highest mountain, to the south west of Ullswater) your body will burn the average of a day’s worth of calories in less than three hours – even more so in cold weather. The quick-releasing energy in sugar could make a real difference on that final push. No wonder Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay’s Everest conquering team were in love with Kendall Mint Cake. “It was easily the most popular item in our high-altitude ration packs,” wrote a member of the team on the first successful climb to the summit of Mount Everest in 1953. “Our only criticism is that we did not have enough of it.”
From us to you, to help you on your way
You’ll find a Stanley flask, the original outdoor adventure companions, in every room at Another Place, The Lake. Fill it how you like – with free Origin Coffee from the front desk or in the Living Space every morning; or Origin hot chocolate or Clipper tea from your room, whenever you’re ready to head out.
We’ve been working with Origin since the very beginning (and with our good friends at Watergate Bay, for over a decade). Origin sources exceptional coffee through a sustainable, ethical, triple bottom line approach – trading directly with its farm and mill partners – before roasting lightly to bring out the best in the beans. The Nicaraguan Los Altos roast we’re currently serving in our drip coffee machines has comforting notes of roasted almond, chocolate and brown sugar. Fill your Stanley before lacing up your hiking boots, and savour that aroma when you open your flask somewhere out in the wilds.
Tunnock’s Teacakes, also in every room, are made just over the Scottish border. These iconic red-and-silver wrapped, pocket-sized servings of biscuit and marshmallow coated in milk chocolate are another great pick-me-up. Just the thing for when that crest of a ridge reveals another stretch of uphill climbing before the top – or you round a bend to find an empty bench looking out over the lake.
8 famous Lake District snacks
1. Kendal Mint Cake
Pitted as the original energy bar, Kendal Mint Cake is a lip-smacking, sweet-snacking staple of the Lake District food tour. You wouldn’t leave New York without tasting a bagel or Cornwall without juggling a pasty. In the Lakes, it’s Kendal Mint Cake. Eat ‘plain’ or smothered in chocolate. Find out more.
2. Grasmere Gingerbread
Not biscuit, nor cake. Grasmere Gingerbread has been freshly mixed, hand pressed and baked at Grasmere’s Church Cottage every day for over 150 years. The original spicy-sweet chewy recipe, locked away in a local bank, hasn’t changed since Victorian cook Sarah Nelson invented it in 1854. Find out more.
3. Cartmel Sticky Toffee Pudding
Another treat for sweet teeth, Cartmel’s pudding – a steaming, caramel drenched sponge cake – is handmade from 100% natural ingredients. Cartmel itself is fast becoming a hub for good food, one of only a few villages in the UK with two Michelin starred restaurants. Find out more.
4. Waberthwaite Cumberland Sausage
In the late 18th century, ‘exotic herbs’ like ginger, black pepper, and nutmeg were flooding northern England’s ports. One resulting recipe was the Woodall family’s Waberthwaite Cumberland Sausage, which spans eight generations. A recipe so cherished it now has Protected Geographical Status alongside Parma ham and Feta cheese. Find out more.
5. Hawkshead Relish
From their Black Garlic Pickle and Worcester Sauce to Orange Marmalade & Whisky, Bloody Mary Chutney and Strawberry Daquiri Jam, a Hawkshead Relish will bring some serious life to your sandwich. What started out as the odd request for sample relishes in their Lake District café has turned into a global company. “We decided that if people couldn’t come to the countryside, we would bring the countryside to them!” Find out more.
6.7.8. Chocolatiers – Kennedys, 1657, Friars
No Cumbrian food guide is complete without chocolate. Small, independent chocolatiers have popped up all over the Lake District. Kennedys Fine Chocolates with its shop and factory in Orton. Kendal’s Famous 1657 Chocolate House’s micro museum and café. Friars, with shops in Keswick and Ambleside, lays claim to the original prosecco truffle.
So have a browse on a rainy day and you’ll be glad you did next time you reach for a snack somewhere on a mountainside…