River Cottage Canteen – Friday Night

Well, we could be posting from now until Christmas to cover off this weekend! It was absolutely brilliant. Gurdev, Dawn, Julie and I travelled down to Dorset for the annual River Cottage Members party.

The journey was tortuous to say the least due and it was a race against time to get to the River Cottage Canteen before they stopped serving – and we made it, just!

In the sentre of Axminster is the Canteen and you enter on an evening through a deserted shop/del through to the restaurantant at the rear. It felt very unpretentious, down to earth and very real. Bang on Hugh ‘brand’ I’d say. And the food that followed was stunning – simple, great produce cooked simply with great style and a very steady hand.

Clearly there is talent in this kitchen too and you could sense Hugh’s hand in everything from the home made bread and butter, smoked cold meats (awesome flavours), fresh picked crab through to the very meaty main courses. We opted to all share three dishes – shoulder of lamb, pork belly and a double portion of sirloin (wow). It was Julie’s idea to all share and it was a great call.

We washed it all down with a couple of bottles of St Emillion (the only french wine on the menu) for me and Gurdev and the girls shared a bottle of white from the Sharpham estate in Devon.

As you’d expect, everything was super local and the cheese board was memorable and vast. What a great way to kick off our weekend – more to follow!

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