Our Recent Tweets
To a brand new restaurant at the Christchurch Harbour Hotel near Bournemouth where patron chef Alex Aitken is turning out truly spectacular food.
Let’s start with the view – we lucked out with a table for 2 facing outwards onto the harbour – and the martinis, a speciality here and mindblowingly good, we opted for traditional vodka and a spicy apple. read more
We are beyond excited about the imminent reopening (May 20) of The Pythouse Kitchen Garden and Café which brings a new restaurant space, deli and vintage chic interior to its idyllic Wiltshire location.
Mitch Earl, the former manager of the 18th century walled garden and cafe has taken on the project as his own venture and is bringing a whole new vibe to this much loved place. read more
The Watch House Cafe in West Bay, Dorset combines my favourite things – spectacular food, stunning location and a venue that is almost ridiculously informal.
Yes you’ve washed up in a beach cafe with plastic chairs and tinny tables but as soon as you’re through the door and catch sight of phenomenal looking home-baked bread and cakes, you realise you are somewhere very different. read more
When the Seaside Boarding House Restaurant & Bar opens next Spring you can be sure the Bridport massive will be beating its doors down. A new venture for Mary-Lou Sturridge and Tony Mackintosh, the duo who set up the legendary Groucho Club in 1985 changing the face of club culture for ever, the Boarding House is a dream come true for West Dorset’s arty, media crowd. read more
Silver Needle: a delicious white tea at Comins Tea House
Don’t you love it when you stumble across a brilliant new local find? My latest – the Comins Tea House in Sturminster Newton – is a real gem of a place. Just 3 weeks old this venture feels very zeitgeisty to me tapping into our growing obsession with healthy living and loose leaf tea.
Started up by Rob and Michelle Comins who also sell specialist imported teas through their Comins Tea House website, the look and feel of the shop/café is minimal Japanese. The real joy, though, is in the amazing quality of tea and the ritual that goes with it. read more
Loving the new look Fifteen Cornwall at Watergate Bay which combines those stellar views with a sleek white interior and a curved anti-pasti bar to satisfy any random cravings for ice cold wine and chargrilled squid.
The vibe and philosophy of this hip Cornish eaterie remains the same – local produce given an Italian spin, cooked by Jamie’s latest team of apprentice chefs. Inside the restaurant the shocking pink has gone, replaced by a more pared-down neutral style offsetting those knock-out panoramic views. read more
The new River Cottage Canteen opens its doors in Bristol later this month combining a stunning architectural refit with a menu which serves innovative and immaculately sourced food. It brings beautiful Grade 11 listed St John’s Hall church to its former glory with a conversion that feels industrial and urban yet in keeping with its 200 year old history. Step inside and you’ll find no traces of its previous life as a building society.
Head chef is Mark Stavrakakis formerly of Bristol’s infamous Rockfish Grill and Seafood Restaurant who oversees a daily changing menu of seasonal, local, organic and wild food. We can hardly wait. In the meantime Country Calling talks to River Cottage about the latest outpost…. read more
When The Talbot in Mells reopens its doors next month transformed into a laid-back pub with an emphasis on comfort food, Somerset should vye for the crown of hippest county.
First there was Babington, then there was At the Chapel, now we have The Talbot unrecognisable from its former guise (as a pretty unremarkable, hum drum kind of pub) into a cool, lo-fi hangout for the Mells Massive. read more
The Thali Cafe, Bristol (pictured above)
Taj Mahal, Bridport
Locals can get watery eyed when they talk about the Taj Mahal in Bridport a consistently good Indian that has been run by the same couple Rafique and Helen Choudhury for more than 25 years. Hugh Fearnley Whittingshall even asked the Choudhurys to knock up a rabbit tikka curry for a recent Channel 4 series. Traditional cooking to the highest standard, fans go for staples such as lamb passanda and king prawn massala. Try the maharajah set meal for 2: samosa and chicken tikka to start, lamb karahi, chicken tikka masala, aloo gobi, saag and bhindi, pilau rice, naan and popadums £30.95. A lovely restaurant run by lovely people. Takeaways available. read more
Roger Saul, founder of Mulberry and erstwhile It bag designer, is a man for whom reinvention seems to be a way of life. When he was painfully kicked out of Mulberry, the brand he created in 1971, he picked himself up and began organic farming, setting up the Sharpham Park range of health foods. Last year he decided to turn Kilver Court Designer Village in Somerset, a former textiles mill and the 1970s home of Babycham, into a designer emporium which he hopes will eventually rival Bicester Village. And today, in another Mr Ben outfit change, he’s turned restauranteur with the launch of Stage 1, a pop up eaterie created from reclaimed film props. read more