Restaurants offering Christmas lunch, and other tasty, innovative dishes can be all over Britain’s countryside – on the shores of lakes, overlooking valleys and even on a mountain. Choose one of the following restaurants and take in a stunning view while dining.
At this time of year, when it is even more meaningful than most to spend time with your family, to celebrate the year that’s passed with close friends or work colleagues, or to simply share in the moment enjoying a romantic table for two, choosing the right restaurant venue is paramount to your dining experience. The choices of where to dine out are plentiful here in Britain, with hidden gems throughout our cities, countryside and coastline. To whet your appetite, and inspire you to book at a venue special to you, we hope you’ll enjoy our selection of some of the finest dining venues, serving delicious food, with beautiful views.
Buckinghamshire, South East England
Set among 300 acres of beautiful parkland and landscaped gardens, Stoke Park is only 35 minutes from Central London and seven miles from London Heathrow. This Christmas (8, 15 and 16 December) their Palladian Mansion is being transformed into a circus wonderland – so get ready to party! The dress code is black tie with the option of fancy dress – find your inner clown or even trapeze artiste and let them entertain you with their world-class hospitality!
ROYAL YACHT BRITANNIA
Ocean Dr, Edinburgh, Scotland
Celebrate in royal fashion with a private event on board Britannia, Her Majesty The Queen’s former floating palace, where kings and queens, celebrities and world leaders were once entertained. Berthed in the historic port of Leith in Edinburgh, Britannia is now a luxury venue for exclusive use dinners and drinks receptions, and is particularly magical at Christmas when candles and sumptuous decorations create a stunning setting for festive dining in the State Dining Room. Guests are treated to a red carpet welcome and are piped on board, an honour previously reserved for The Queen and the Royal Family. There is a variety of packages to choose from which would be perfect for a special occasion or as a memorable place for an office party. Alternatively, book a ‘behind-the-ropes’ Christmas private tour to experience the highlights of this iconic ship whilst sipping Champagne and learning about festive traditions on board.
THE LAKE VYRNWY HOTEL & SPA
Lake Vyrnwy is a reservoir just outside Snowdonia National Park in stunning North Wales. Built in the 1880s to supply water to the northern England city of Liverpool, the 355-metre long reservoir boasts an unusual turreted tower, which looks like it should belong to a fairytale castle. The Lake Vyrnwy Hotel & Spa overlooks the water and has two dining experiences on offer: the Tower Restaurant is more formal, with a three-course menu showcasing seasonal and local produce, while the Tavern Brasserie is more relaxed and offers classic dishes, such as burger and fish and chips. Both eateries share the same great views of the lake.
Devon, South West England
There is no shortage of open fires on which to roast chestnuts this Christmas at the impressive exclusive-hire country house. Immaculately restored over a five-year period, this gothic baronial mansion set on five acres of grounds oozes classic charm coupled with accents of modern luxury. Boasting 35 individually designed bedroom suites, many with four-poster beds and claw foot tubs and original fireplaces on which to hang stockings, this perfect party house can sleep up to 82 guests! Over the Yuletide season the house’s five grand reception rooms are adorned with all the Christmas accoutrements, with trees, wreaths, baubles and candles worthy of a Downton Abby film set.
New Forest, South England
Serving an exquisite five course festive dinner between 25 November to 23 December 2017, with Roast New Forest ‘Wrolstad’ Bronze Turkey and Chewton Glen Christmas Pudding, Brandy Butter & Sauce included within their multifarious menu, Chewton Glen is a firstclass dining option. Nestled on the fringe of the New Forest and a few minutes walk from the sea, it is an idyllic retreat with a sparkling history. Historic documents suggest the house dates from the early eighteenth century, with land and premises known as “Chewton Glen House” appearing in 1732. Its famous literary link threads through the decades and centuries. Captain Frederick Marryat stayed for periods in the 1840’s, gathering material for his famous novel “The Children of the New Forest”. Although don’t be misled by history; Chewton Glen never stands still and is a world leader in innovation and hospitality. There is no better time to experience the magic of this property than during the festive season.
THE HORN OF PLENTY
Devon, South West England
Overlooking the Tamar Valley, an officially designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty around the rivers Tamar, Tavy and Lynher in Devon, you can enjoy sweeping views while dining on British food with a hint of French flair. Dishes change daily depending on the availability of seasonal ingredients and local produce, but might include local venison, duck or fish. The restaurant is housed in a four-star manor house hotel of the same name.
Warwickshire, West Midlands England
A magnificent 43 bedroom manor house hotel in Leamington Spa, set in 10 acres of grounds. Mallory Court is the epitome of a quintessential English country house hotel. Relax beside a roaring fire and savour exquisite cuisine. Christmas dinners are available throughout December, and with their attentive service and warm hospitality, 3 AA rosettes and exclusive Relais & Chateaux membership, you will be left with the feeling of quality and service from this award-winning hotel. Their seasonal menu combines the rich flavours of Christmas in dishes to suit all tastes, all freshly prepared while you unwind away from the hectic Christmas rush.
ISLE OF ERISKA
Benderloch, Argyll, Scotland
The Isle of Eriska is a 25-bedroom Relais & Chateaux hotel, located on its own 300acre private island. Located just two hours from Glasgow Airport, the island also has a luxury spa, tennis courts, nine-hole golf course, nature reserve and private beach. From September to January, epicureans can enjoy big and bold flavours on a new ‘Great Game and Fine Wine Experience’ at The Isle of Eriska in Scotland. This is the season when the Scottish countryside comes into its own on the private island with the autumn colours at their most dramatic. The larder is full of foraged ingredients and the Eriska kitchen gardens overflow with root vegetables, pumpkins and winter herbs for the season’s table.
BELMOND BRITISH PULLMAN
Journey from and back to London Victoria
Step back in time to the glamorous 1920s when you board the famous vintage train at London Victoria station. A fine dining experience awaits in your beautiful wood-panelled carriage, resplendent with art deco designs. Entertainment, bedecked carriages and a delicious meal as the beautiful winter countryside passes you by-a festive lunch with all the trimmings aboard the Belmond British Pullman is the perfect way to celebrate Christmas.
Cairngorm Mountain, Cairngorms National Park, Scotland
The Ptarmigan – named after a bird that breeds in Scotland’s tallest mountains – is the highest restaurant in Britain, sitting at 1,066 metres (3,500 foot) above sea level. The restaurant is at the top station of Cairngorm’s funicular railway, where carriages are hauled up the mountain using a cable system. It offers great views of the surrounding countryside and lochs – on a clear day you might even be able to make out Ben Nevis, Britain’s highest mountain, on the horizon. The food menu uses local ingredients where possible. Cairngorm is at the heart of the national park that takes its name – it’s around three hours from Edinburgh by road or rail.
3rd Floor Rooftop, Victoria Gate, Leeds
In June, sleek rooftop Japanese restaurant and bar Issho arrived in the city, specialising in Asian sharing dishes that incorporate Yorkshire produce. Having previously launched London’s Sexy Fish in 2015, executive chef Ben Orpwood’s extensive travels around Japan have inspired his dishes, resulting in creations such as Wagyu pastrami and maple-glazed pork belly with fresh apple and wasabi. The restaurant features an outdoor terrace, and its bar, Kori, serves a wide range of sake alongside Japanese-inspired cocktails, such as the Matcha Sour. Festive season at Issho is available from 13 November until 24 December, with dishes including turkeytori skewers and a maccha Christmas tree dessert.
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