November, Water Lane

With the clocks going back and an unequivocal change in the seasons, it is time to move from the garden terrace restaurant into the protection of the Carnation House. Launching this weekend, 6th November, we will welcome guests into the Grade II listed glasshouse for breakfast, lunch and from 24th November onwards for our new Festive Feasting menus. Decked with candles, lights and foraged foliage from the garden, the Carnation House will look beautiful for the festive season. The seasonal garden menus are heartier and the puddings stickier. Hug a bowl of thick squash soup with crispy sage and croutons, followed by duck with carrot, buckwheat and green sauce, bitter leaves with Kentish Blue, walnut and apple and for pudding, pear and prune crumble or chocolate and walnut tart. Sample menu here.

Reserve your table for breakfast or lunch by clicking on the button below.


A date for your diary… the Water Lane Christmas Market is on Friday 3rd and Saturday 4th December. We have gathered a group of creatives, producers and makers who will be setting up stalls with their wares. Come for lunch in the Carnation House before choosing a Christmas tree and wreath to take home and shop for beautiful and original gifts including cards, candles, baskets, skin care, charcuterie, gin and cheese.

Our Festive Feasting menus launch on 24th November. Available for groups of 9+ and by pre-ordering only, these menus are designed to be shared by the whole table with large dishes placed down the centre of the table. We can cater for pescatarian, vegetarian and vegan diners. Enquire about Festive Feasting below or view the Festive Menu here.

With the change in season, we’ve been hanging on to whatever floral moments we can get here in the garden. The dahlias have started to fizzle out and it will only be another week or so before they’re lifted. But the real surprise for us is the show that the chrysanthemums are currently putting on. Late as ever to the party, we’ve been knocked out by their colour and forms adding a new dimension to the hand tied bunches and arrangements we’ve been creating.

Current favourites from the chrysanthemum bed includes Bigoudi Red, Allouise Salmon and Tula Carmella. As long as the hard frosts hold off, we’ll hopefully keep on cutting these for a few more weeks. And then we’ll be delving into store of summer dried flowers. You can delve into them too when we hold a workshop on 22nd November with Bloom and Burn which will focus on creating a dried flower centrepiece. For more details and to click below.

Water Lane Workshops x Lucy Berridge

Receiving hand-written personalised cards and gift tags is always such a joy, for both giver and receiver. In this Modern Calligraphy workshop on 26 November, led by Lucy Berridge, you'll be taught how to pen Christmas cards, gift tags and place names for your festive table.

In Lucy’s workshop you’ll be introduced to the equipment required, inks to use, a range of papers to try and under her careful guidance, led through a range of simple exercises that develop your skills. Designed for complete beginners, or those wanting to refresh their skills, this delightful experience of gentle focused learning costs £120 per person, including tea and coffee and a two-course lunch in the Carnation House.

November also sees us continuing floral workshops with Bloom and Burn or learn the art of Kurinuki ceramics with Kate Monckton. Book tickets below.

A seasonal recipe for Water Lane’s Autumn Caponata

If you have any pumpkins left over from Halloween, this is a great recipe to make use of the flesh. The large pumpkins often used for carving aren’t the most flavourful, but this punchy Sicilian inspired recipe is full of herbs, capers and dressed in vinegar, and is even better when left to mature for a few days. Serve at room temperature with grilled meats, roast fish, fried halloumi, on its own, or with crispy grilled polenta as we do in the restaurant.

Feeds 6


  • 400g tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 tin of tomatoes
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 x sticks celery, diced
  • 1 fennel bulb, diced
  • Several sprigs of fresh thyme, washed and picked
  • 500g pumpkin, peeled and diced into 2 cm cubes
  • 500g cauliflower, broken into florets
  • 2 aubergines, diced into 2cm cubes
  • 100g almonds, skin off and chopped, such as marcona
  • 100g golden raisins
  • 200ml fresh apple juice
  • 2 tablespoon sherry vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon, capers, drained
  • Handful of flat parsley, washed and chopped
  • Salt
  • Olive oil


First, make the tomato sauce by gently frying the onions in a little oil until soft. Add garlic, celery and fennel and continue to cook for five minutes. Add the fresh and tinned tomatoes and the thyme. Cook slowly, stirring occasionally, until tick and heavily reduced. Taste and adjust seasoning.

While the sauce is cooking, preheat the oven to 190oC. In two separate tins, dress the chopped pumpkin lightly in olive oil and a little salt and roast for 40 minutes until soft and a little caramelised. Halfway through, add the tray of cauliflower and aubergine and roast for 20 minutes, until golden.

In a small saucepan, gently heat the apple juice for 10 minutes and add the golden raisins, which will swell and plump up in the liquid. Drain and cool.

Mix the roasted vegetables gently together with the tomato sauce and stir in the soaked raisins, almonds, capers, vinegar and parsley. Best if you can leave overnight as the flavours mature and mingle together. Addictively moreish!

We look forward to welcoming you to Water Lane,

Nick and Ian