HOWARD’s House, one of the West Country’s hidden gems, a hotel and restaurant in the beautiful Teffont valley west of Salisbury, has a new chef, the first change since 2002.
Andy Britton is an award-winning chef who has worked with Albert Roux and Michael Caines, and locally has been making a name for himself at Bishopstrow House near Warminster and at the Macdonald Bath Spa hotel.
Famously and repeatedly voted the country’s most romantic hotel, Howard’s House, beside the Teff stream at Teffont Evias, is a handsome stone building that dates from the early 17th century. It was owned by the Mayne family for centuries and has been a country house hotel for more than 25 years.
A warm welcome and close attention to guests’ every need has always been the Howards House hallmark, while the restaurant has been famed for its fine, locally sourced food. The original chef-patron, Paul Firmin, set high standards, and since 2002 Nick Wentworth has created delicious, elegant food with an emphasis on local provenance and seasonal ingredients. Nick has moved away from the hospitality business, which created the opportunity to welcome a new head chef to the team.
Like his predecessors, Andy Britton has a passionate commitment to using the finest local ingredients “from field to fork”. He also enjoys talking to guests, finding out the combinations they most enjoy, and happily sourcing special requests.
Innovations following Andy’s appointment will include the introduction of a Howard’s House dining club, an intimate evening in which food enthusiasts can put their experience entirely in Andy’s expert hands, and enjoy his personal recommendations.
Andy lives locally in Warminster and has been looking for some time for the kind of independent and individual opportunity which a private, family owned business such as Howard’s House offers.
The special Valentine’s Day tasting menu, which is being served until 14th February, gives a flavour of Andy’s style of modern British food. The meal begins, in proper Valentine’s style with champagne and canapes, followed by a delicate ballantine of quail with golden raisins, garden Jerusalem artichoke and verjus; the second course is scallop ceviche with lime, lemon balm and horseradish; followed by a champagne and clementine sorbet. The main course is pot-roasted breast of guinea fowl, with savoy cabbage, morels, salsify and juniper berry jus. The pudding, chilled passion fruit and chocolate fondant, is followed by a sumptuous baked crottin de chevre with honeycomb.
For more information visit www.howardshousehotel.co.uk