Best Loved Places To Stay

Best Loved Places To Stay.

Featured in Signature Chefs Recipe Book South West & Channel Islands, selecting the Greatest British Chefs, Venues & Producers.screen-shot-2016-12-16-at-16-12-57

Julian Ebbutt, MD of Best Loved Hotels, shares his favourite places to stay across the South-West.

Windswept moors, sub-tropical gardens, narrow hedge-lined country lanes, picture-perfect hidden villages and thrilling sea views…these are some of the mental images conjured up by the South-West of England. Equally striking to the visitor is the region’s unique food culture. The South-West was a pioneer in bringing fresh, local and seasonal produce into the public consciousness. Indeed, the UK’s first farmer’s market opened in 1997 at Green Park in Bath and is still going strong. And, given that over half the farms in the West are smaller than five hectares, family farms and artisanal producers play an important role in keeping quality high. The rewards are there for the tasting – grass-fed organic livestock, fresh fruit and vegetables, amazing cider, tasty game, some of the best seafood in the world…we could go on and on.

Signature Chefs SW MapGloucestershire

Lords of The Manor Signature Chefs
Lords of The Manor Best Loved Hotel. Featured in Signature Chefs SW

Picturesque villages, stately homes, country pubs, market towns and meandering lanes – the landscape of the Cotswolds is the quintessential picture of England. What could be more delightful than exploring the local villages and pubs, then settling down to a Michelin-starred gourmet feast at Lords of the Manor. This effortlessly luxurious 17th-century country manor has held a Michelin Star for over eight years, and is unquestionably one of the finest restaurants in the Cotswolds. The Head Chef benefits from excellent local and regional producers, including wild game from Salisbury Plain, succulent meat from Walter Rose & Son family butchers, plus hand-crafted, hand-salted butter produced by Grant Harrington right on the doorstep.

Signature Chefs Bovey Castle
Signature Chefs Bovey Castle

Dartmoor unquestionably boasts some of the region’s most stunning scenery – moody granite tors, wild ponies, solitary birds of prey and heather-covered moorland evoke the dramatic landscapes portrayed in The Hound of the Baskervilles. In addition to the outdoor delights, it’s also a great place to eat, as is evidenced by the stunning 5-star Bovey Castle. Both The Great Western Restaurant and Smith’s Brasserie feature the finest local ingredients, including aged Exmoor beef, game direct from the moors and fresh seafood from the Devon coast.

The hotel itself is set in an extraordinary 275-acre Dartmoor estate of rolling valleys and beautiful countryside – complete with spa and renowned 18-hole golf course, not to mention a host of activities including; off road driving, sloe gin-making, archery, horseback riding, hot air ballooning, clay pigeon shooting and falconry.

Somerset packs a great deal of variety into a small area, including the well-kept country pubs of the Somerset Levels, the secluded hamlets of The Quantocks, dramatic Cheddar Gorge in the Mendips, charming Wells (the smallest city in England), and the wonderful contrast between dynamic Bristol and stately Bath. Taunton is perfectly situated for exploring Southern Somerset and is the ideal gateway to the West Country. The Castle at Taunton, owned and run by the Chapman family for over 60 years, is well known for being a culinary trail-blazer and an absolute legend in hospitality. Whether you dine in Castle Bow or Brazz, the elegant but casual brasserie, you can expect top quality West Country produce, including meat from J&A Gibbins of Exeter, dairy from Longman’s in Yeovil, a variety of artisanal cheeses, plus herbs from The Castle’s own 900-year old Norman garden.

A great option for exploring Northern Somerset and beyond is Berwick Lodge, a hidden secret of a boutique country house just outside Bristol. Set in 18 acres of beautiful parkland, this 1890s Arts and Crafts manor house has been restored to its original glory to create a stylish, romantic atmosphere. In Hattusa Restaurant, Roux Scholar Paul O’Neill demonstrates his ongoing support for local suppliers in creating innovative modern British cuisine with
the occasional unexpected twist.

Devon and Dorset

Signature Chef Geraldine Gay. Head Chef Bridge-House.
Signature Chef Geraldine Gay. Head Chef Bridge-House.

The Jurassic Coast World Heritage site stretches for 95 miles from East Devon to Studland Bay in Dorset. The coast is not only fabulously scenic, it’s a fascinating walk through time: a visual dramatisation of 185 million years of natural history. Bridge House in Beaminster, only five miles from the coast, has its own extraordinary history to tell. A coaching inn dating from the 13th century, Bridge House effortlessly combines the romantic period detail of the building with modern boutique design. In the kitchen, Chef Geraldine Gay (pictured) takes full advantage of West Dorset’s amazing natural larder: Rawles Butchers in Bridport provides local meat, Samways fish swim from boat to plate in less than 24 hours and there are also hand-dived scallops from Lyme Bay, Portland oysters, smoked fish from Chesil Smokery and even internationally award-winning English wine from Furleigh Estate, just a mile down the road.

The New Forest
The New Forest is one of England’s great rustic playgrounds. Covering over 250 square miles and home to 1,500 ancient trees (the Knightwood Oak, is over 500 years old), it’s also the largest expanse of heathland in Europe. The area is ideal for walking, cycling and riding. The Montagu Arms Hotel in Beaulieu makes the ideal base for exploration. The famous roaming ponies are on your doorstep and the traditional English character of this country house hotel is reflected through the roaring open fires, large cosy sofas, beautiful oak panelling and picturesque gardens. The 3 AA Rosette-winning Terrace Restaurant is highly acclaimed for good reason. Head Chef Matthew Tomkinson sources the finest local ingredients from New Forest suppliers and supplements these with wonderful produce from the hotel’s own kitchen garden.

Signature Chefs Montagu Arms Recipe
Signature Chefs Montagu Arms Recipe

best-loved-signature-chefsBest Loved Signature Chefs South West & Channel Islands RRP £25

Selecting and featuring the Greatest British Chefs, Venues and Producers. Released NOW in time for Christmas. Championing 50 unique recipes, features, profiles and places to stay.

SPECIAL OFFER: ORDER TODAY Incl FREE Delivery AND a copy of the Best Loved Guide to the top places to stay across the UK!* (Book posted via Royal Mail Next Day. Best Loved Guide posted )

Best Loved South West Signature Chefs Recipe Book