Following eight months and a £1 million refurbishment of the site, local entrepreneur and businessman Ian Dutton has launched his latest venture, Brown Sugar. The new bar and restaurant, situated on the historic three-storey Lighthouse site in the heart of Windermere village, dates back to 1877 when it started life as an independent chemist.
Seating more than 80 customers inside, with space for a further 14 on the balcony and 24 on the heated outside terrace, Brown Sugar remains a three-floor bar and restaurant, but with a completely new offering and sparkling new interior. “It’s taken a gruelling eight months to achieve our vision, but we have accomplished something very special,” says Ian, who, together with wife, Annette, owns The Pig in Windermere and The Village Inn in Bowness. “We had to peel back the layers of this beautiful building and restore it to its former glory.” The warm and modern interior is punctuated with his now-infamous quirky touches. Buckets for urinals, loos sourced from the Queen’s own supplier, German push-handles in the shape of hands, and the dulcet tones of Michael McIntyre’s humour, playing in both the ladies and gents loos, add to the fun.
The ground floor offers café-style speciality teas and coffees such as ‘Red Velvet latte’ (with ground beetroot, organic cocoa, ginger and cinnamon) and a patisserie and juice bar whilst the middle floor provides a more upmarket dining experience. The upper floor, fitted out with sofas and its own bar, is available for private hire or as a place to relax with a drink prior to dinner. A state-of-the-art sound system is fitted across all floors.
Breakfast, brunch, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner will be served, with options such as avocado spinach benedict; brie, wild-mushroom and caramelised pizza; butternut squash, parmesan and mint risotto and fresh scallops with chargrilled cauliflower, pine kernels, limes and cress dressing. Specialties from the grill, pastas, steaks and power-bowl salads will also be on offer, together with an extensive range of champagnes, wine, beer, spirits and speciality cocktails. A ‘cultivator’, situated on the middle floor, growing pea shoots, rocket and basil, provides the team of six chefs with fresh produce on-site.