Sunday, October 25, 2015

Lunch in the New Forest

DSC06169 (1024x682)Sometimes, the best discoveries come from wandering while lost.

May, early summer in the New Forest.  I had a spare hour, so took the slow road through Brockenhurst following interesting signage.  The Victorian logos indicating  The Pig were naturally appealing, leading to a country house and gardens, restaurant and lodge, that I noted for a future visit.

DSC06150 (1024x666)Fast forward five months.  I’ve decided that the restaurant is perfect for my w.wezen, but reservations are impossible (making it infinitely more desirable).  I finally nail a weekend table pour deux and make a day with it.

DSC06147 (1024x682)The restaurant prides itself  on sourcing ingredients from the garden, so the first order is a stroll through the beds and greenhouses, discovering a massage hut in the middle of the hotel’s pond.


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DSC06153 (683x1024)Then it’s into the conservatory for lunch.  While the venison starter was questionable, the mains (pheasant, for me) were well prepared and tastefully presented.  The FT recently wrote that the best way to parse a wine list is to swallow pride and ask the sommelier.  I gave it a go, and he did, indeed, offer an outstanding glass alongside the meal.

DSC06157 (1024x683)On to the library for pudding (dessert), a lovely berry tart topped with a unappealingly coloured sauce.  No matter, we used the time to speculate over the connections and classes of the couples newly arriving from the car park.

DSC06129 (683x1024)A last stroll around the grounds to walk off the lunch and a slow meander back north through the woodlands. It’s all a nice, British sort of vibe: the day in the countryside, good food in the bric-à-brac surroundings, the well-labeled gardens and greenhouses.


And, relaxing into it, it makes for a nice autumn break in the center of the Park.

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Disclaimer: As always, I was neither asked nor incented to visit, and the opinions and photos are my own.

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