Our series Edior, Fiona Duncan, writes:
‘The Wellington Arms is a dining pub with three rooms so immaculate that even in plutocratic north Hampshire, it stands out like a supermodel in a street market – oak furniture, hungarian goose down bedding and slate flagstones with underfloor heating are just some of the features that set it apart. Partners Simon and Aussie-born Jason have owned, run and gently expanded this pretty former shooting lodge of the Iron Duke for eight years and it looks and feels incredible.
‘Just an hour’s drive from central London yet set in peaceful countryside, it ticks all the boxes for urbanites seeking rural idyll; immaculate, fulsome flower- and vegetable-gardens, which the owners and kitchen staff tend themselves; beautiful orchards; they even keep rescue hens – not to mention the beehives, pet lamb and de rigeur Tamworth pigs. They have tea cosies knitted by Simon’s mum using undyed wool from their own sheep, and fabric hens dangling from the room keys.
‘Jason’s cooking takes pub dining to its highest level: home made, locally sourced and tasty, with a state of the art cheese soufflé. After lunch, take the footpath from the door of the Wellington Arms, which leads through woods and fields, or perhaps head for Watership Down, site of Richard Adam’s famous book of the same name’.