Bruton’s foodie delights

Enjoy delicious homemade cakes at Cole Manor Tea Rooms

Enjoy delicious homemade cakes at Cole Manor Tea Rooms - Credit: Archant

Although it may be smaller than some towns, Bruton has a big appetite when it comes to food

Authentic French food is the name of the game at Truffles

Authentic French food is the name of the game at Truffles - Credit: Archant

Much has changed in Bruton since Mike Clifford took over the 13th century Sun Inn 19 years ago. His High Street pub, as well as serving up traditional pub fayre, also offers the speciality of authentic Persian dishes. And it’s not the only menu in Bruton to have caught the imagination of customers far and wide, as Mike says: “Over recent years Bruton has been the centre of much media attention with the arrival of the Hauser & Wirth art gallery. New businesses and an influx of residents and visitors from London have seen this quaint Saxon town rising through the ranks of places to visit and live and tourism has started to boost its reputation as a place to eat.”

Over at 95 High Street, Truffles is modelled on what you would expect to find in a French brasserie or bistro, with an emphasis on authentic French food. Here they hold regular lobster dinners at £20 for a whole lobster.

Meanwhile, opening a restaurant in their own home at 51 High Street was the idea of Matt Watson’s wife. “And what a very good one it was too!” exclaims Matt, who describes Matt’s Kitchen as an ‘unpretentious, honest little restaurant with an atmosphere to die for!”

Even if you have not ventured into this small town lately you may still have heard of the reputation of the bakery, wine shop and restaurant called At the Chapel. Set in a Grade II listed building and using West Country produce it brings ‘a relaxed Mediterranean approach’ to eating.

Roth Bar & Grill, where the most popular items on the menu are the hand cut tomahawk steaks, is part of Hauser & Wirth’s well known Durslade Farm project. The restaurant is run by Steve and Jules Horrell who rear their own meat and enjoy a loyal following of local, national and international guests.

Matt's Kitchen rustles up one special at dinnertime on a menu changing daily

Matt's Kitchen rustles up one special at dinnertime on a menu changing daily - Credit: Archant

Next to Hauser & Wirth and the railway station you’ll find artisan coffee roaster Bean Shot Coffee roastery and coffee bar. After trading for just two years they won the 2015 Best Coffee Roasted in the UK award by the UK Coffee Stops site. “We prefer to work direct with growers and roast only the highest quality arabic bean coffee,” says Managing Director Nick Law.

Diana and Richard Scott opened the Cole Manor Tea Rooms on the outskirts of Bruton in 2013. A Somerset Life Food and Drink Award winner, the tea rooms are in an idyllic spot next to the River Pitt. Their organic milk and cream comes from Bruton Dairies, cheese from Barbers at Ditcheat, meat from Andrew Barclay in Wincanton, bread from West Camel Bakery and ice-cream comes from Marshfield Farms near Bath.

Bruton is known as a farming village and over at Godminster Farm the vintage organic Cheddar heart is probably the long-standing favourite with customers. Multi award-winners, Godminster’s horseradish and elderflower infused vodka spirits won the maximum three stars each at the most recent Guild of Fine Food Great Taste Awards.

Managing Director Richard Hollingbery says: “We are currently planning the expansion of our brie making.”

Rich Clothier, MD of Wyke Farms, is the third generation family member to be making Cheddar. Proud to be the UK’s first national Cheddar brand to become 100 per cent self-sufficient in green energy, Wyke Farm Cheddar is sold across the world in 160 countries.Rich says it’s fair to say Bruton has become a popular destination, with its array of places to eat and local producers supplying great quality products.“You can’t beat eating local produce grown and made in the same place.”

Go shopping: Enjoy browsing and buying antiques, objects for your home and garden, artisan gifts, flowers, furniture and food.

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Travel back in time: The Romans and the Saxons, fossils and flooding – just some of the history covered in Bruton Museum in the High Street.

Bruton is famous for…

Its schools, including Bruton School for Girls, King’s Bruton and Sexey’s School.

Mill on the Brue – a unique family- run, award-winning outdoor activity centre.

Its landmark – Glastonbury has its Tor, Bruton has the Dovecote. Built in the 16th century, it is now looked after by the National Trust

Westcombe Dairy – Jamie Oliver turned to his cheese hero Tom Calver when he wanted to create a truffled Cheddar!

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