Thanks to all the generous hoteliers, restaurateurs and chefs who have supported Screen Bites this year, offering meals for two at their establishments, all of which specialise in local sourcing and seasonal produce.
We don’t tell our audience which Feast will be on offer at which venue, just to add a little excitement. So here are the Feasts, in alphabetical order
28 Fore Street, Evershot, DT2 0JW : 01935 83228 :
Thomas Hardy’s Sow and Acorn in Tess of the D’Urbervilles is a proper village pub and always a popular destination for our Festival Feasts winners.. New general managers Natalie Read and Richard Legg and chef Guy Horley offer a warm welcome, great beers and excellent food, drawing on the best of local and seasonal produce.
Rich McGrath, head chef at Shapwick’s village pub, close to the Stour and Badbury Rings, loves his job. He says: “Even after 22 years of working in professional kitchens I still get a buzz out of learning a technique, discovering unique ingredients, and, most of all having our guests going home with a smile on their face.”
The Castleman, an atmospheric country house hotel, is owned and managed by Barbara Garnsworthy, who is also head chef. Local sourcing is at the heart of the Castleman’s culinary style. Herbs, salads, vegetables and fruit are grown in the gardens, and you can find out from which local farm your Sunday roast originated.
Beautiful Bridge House Hotel in Beaminster was featured in Savouring West Dorset, where chef Linda Paget was filmed making Dorset apple cake. Dating from the 13th century the boutique hotel was originally a clergy house. It has 13 rooms and an award-winning restaurant where the focus is on fresh food, local ingredients and well-chosen wines.
The Eastbury’s latest awards – Dorset magazine’s Best Restaurant 2016, gold in the 2016 Dorset Tourism Awards and Taste of the West 2017 gold – are testament to the warm welcome from owners Nicky and Paul King and their staff and head chef Matt Street’s great food, served in the conservatory restaurant overlooking the gardens.
In 2017 Mark and Emmanuelle Hartstone celebrate their tenth anniversary at their restaurant with rooms. Cheese expert and multi award-winning chef Mark’s menus always include details of the meat, fish, vegetables and fruit, and the “food miles” they have travelled to Cranborne.
The outstanding contemporary English food prepared by head chef Simon Clewlow has once again brought Taste of the West gold to The Grange. The hotel has also won gold again in the Taste of the West hotel category.
Founded 240 years ago Hall and Woodhouse still brews its traditional Badger beers and seasonal ales at the historic Blandford St Mary brewery. The pubs serve favourite beers, local seasonal food and traditional pub grub. Larger establishments, including the Duchess of Cornwall at Poundbury, also offer comfortable guest bedrooms.
Howards House, regularly voted “Britain’s most romantic hotel”, has a lovely restaurant, overlooking the garden and the little river Teff. Chef Nick Wentworth creates beautiful food that tastes as good as it looks, using seasonal local meats and game, fish and seafood and the freshest of vegetables.
Moreton Tea Rooms has won many awards and is a favourite destination for walkers, cyclists and people visiting Lawrence of Arabia’s grave – the tea room’s cakes are displayed on his funeral bier! Chef Gordon Sutherland and his wife Kate are joining us in our last year at Moreton and Winfrith Newburgh.
The Pig on the Beach’s greenhouse restaurant offers outstanding coastline sea views out to Old Harry Rocks. From garden to plate, what cannot be grown in The Pig’s well-stocked kitchen garden and fruit cages will be sourced within a 25-mile radius. The food is seasonal and influenced by the forest and coast, with the emphasis on fresh, clean flavours.
Consistently rated one of the country’s top seafood restaurants, the Riverside is a mecca for lovers of crab, lobster and other fresh seasonal fish. This year, former general manager Neil Chilcott has taken over from Arthur and Jan Watson, who owned the Riverside for more than 50 years.
The Ship continues a long tradition of hospitality at this former coaching inn on the A30, a favourite destination for locals wanting a proper village pub with real ales and good food. Owner Gavin Griggs, chef Bruce Cox and the team pride themselves on using local and seasonal ingredients.
Summer Lodge, Red Carnation’s hotel in Evershot, attracts visitors from around the world. Originally built in 1798 as a dower house by the second Earl of Ilchester, and modernised in 1932, the hotel has luxurious rooms, beautiful gardens and a restaurant where diners enjoy the finest local seasonal food, prepared by head chef Steve Titman.
The True Lovers’ Knot is a traditional pub, serving good beers and a menu that combines homemade food with more contemporary dishes. The fresh and locally sourced produce includes meat from the Tarrant valley, game from nearby Shapwick and lamb from the Blackmore Vale.
Brett and Kelly Sutton own the White Post at Rimpton, straddling the Dorset-Somerset border. Listed in the Michelin guide, The White Post has won many awards for Brett’s inspirational, original food and his use of locally sourced ingredients whenever possible.