Wiltshire – Pythouse Kitchen Garden

Such an unexpected place, lost in the countryside, a little ways from Tisbury. A magical one too. The garden used to be part of the Pythouse estate, you can still see the big house nearby. The restaurant was once a potting shed – a big one, it once sheltered a tractor too! The bricks are original, a more modern conservatory replacing the ageing one. Add a couple of wood burning stoves, mismatched chairs, tables made from old doors… and it now feels like a home. The wooden beams and windows have been decorated with old man’s beard – fluffy flowers entangled discreetly with fairy lights, giving a cocoon-like atmosphere. You expect little fairies to be hiding behind the petals…

Nice mix of guests too. Some arrived wearing Wellington boots. Others were celebrating a birthday. A few families too – there are crayons ready to keep the little ones busy. The menu fits on one page but it’s more than enough. You will get a glimpse of the cakes on the way in. Some dishes are elegant and refined, others hearty and perfect after a long walk. I settled for a filling tomato, bean and chorizo stew, its texture so very satisfying, a little spice, served with fresh bread and butter. Add to that a Suffolk cider with a hint of blackberry juice. Pure happiness. There is a great view on the garden too, a little sleepy at this time of the year but you will nevertheless find chard, artichokes and broccoli. Down the hill is an orchard which should be such a lovely sight when it starts blooming. Here and there, neatly piled, glass bells or terracotta pots. In the summer, you can even buy their vegetables and fruit from the shop, as well as local produce such as honey…

Quite a difficult place to leave, I would gladly have spent most of the afternoon there with a book and a teapot or two.

 

Pythouse

More information about the region on the Visit Wiltshire website

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