Friday, 21 June 2013

From kitchen garden to table in minutes - The Pig is a must for Ladies who Lunch

The Pig at Brockenhurst is a restaurant with rooms - located in the New Forest National Park
I don't often review restaurants, but earlier this week I had such a delicious lunch in the New Forest that I'd be a complete hog if I didn't share details with readers! It's close enough to Exbury and Furzey, where the rhododendrons are still putting on good colour displays to justify a break between garden visits and you'll have the added bonus of being able to wander through the immaculate grounds and see a highly-productive kitchen garden. 
The kitchen garden at The Pig provides fresh produce straight for the table
With the unlikely name of "The Pig", this property is a real find for hungry garden visitors. It's the brainchild of Robin Hutson, who's had a long career in hotel management and is already well-known for the successful Hotel de Vin chain he created twenty years ago. Described as a  restaurant with "rooms and kitchen garden food", the emphasis here is on fresh, locally-sourced produce. But Hutson and his wife Judy (who's responsible for the decorating), have taken their boutique "shabby chic" look one stage further here, by creating an immaculate kitchen garden that will make most home growers jealous. 
The dining room at The Pig has a provencale rustic feel to it
If the food's not grown on site, there's a strict 25-mile menu policy whereby head chef, James Golding, sources all ingredients within this radius. The emphasis here is on constantly changing, but innovative food combinations, depending on what's available. And with a name like The Pig, it will come as no surprise that many of the dishes feature pork in various guises. The pig's crackling with home-made apple sauce is nothing less than superlative! 
The chef is assisted by local forager, Garry Eveleigh, who's been gathering wild food from the woods of the New Forest and the Solent shores since he was a boy. Hotel guests can join him on his foraging expeditions if they wish. The head chef will then change his menu according to what Gary has found whilst out and about. Definitely worth making the effort to get here to make a pig of yourself! Bookings can be made on: 0845 0779 494.

3 comments:

  1. I would love to have a meal there, and I like the glass ceiling for the dining room and the deck and water for foraging.

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  2. Yeah, that is ... impressive. The potager garden is chock full of goodies, and the dining room looks quite inviting!

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  3. Even for me as a vegetarian, this looks lovely. I was in the New Forest at the same time as you, slightly further northwest, enjoying the Wood Green open gardens weekend: we could have met for lunch again! Jill (landscapelover, although blogspot is reluctant to let me comment as such...)

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