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Chefs Recipe - Festive Mulled Wine Cake by Martin Hadden, Historic Sussex Hotels Group
25 Great Festive Menus With Club Offers
The season is indeed upon us and we are delighted to bring you our guide to festive dining in the lead up to Christmas. Whether you are looking for the traditional or the experimental, the sumptuous or the sophisticated, our guide has it all covered. And the best bit? Member cards are accepted on all of these menus right up to Christmas week!
Lainston House, Nr. Winchester, Hampshire
Christmas is such a magical time of the year at Lainston House – the charming 17th Century country house is elegantly framed by welcoming stone archways and overlooks a most impressive view down the mile long avenue of lime trees – perfect with a sprinkling of snow!
Example festive seasonal menu (£26 for 2 courses, £32.50 for 3 courses)
Starter: Smoked Salmon with Pickled Beetroot, Watercress and Lime
Main Course: Roast Chicken with Celeriac, Roast Cabbage and Rhubarb
Dessert: Orange and Chocolate, Mandarin Sorbet, Crumble
2. The Palm Court at The Langham, Regent Street, London
Palm Court in The Langham is the sparkling centrepiece of this historic location and famed as the birthplace of the afternoon tea tradition. The lounge has just undergone a stunning refurbishment that we could resist to showcasing. As variation, why not consider a seasonal festive tea. The presentation is super cute and includes a selection of over 30 tea blends.
Example festive afternoon tea (£49 per person, £59 per person with Champagne):
Selection of festive savouries including Roast Bronze Turkey, celery and mustard mayonnaise.
Scones & Preserves including Apple and Cranberry jam
Pasteries including Festive chocolate yule log, Christmas bauble
3. Colette’s at The Grove, Chandler’s Cross, Hertfordshire
Take a trip to The Grove, as Queen Victoria used to, for a festive break with all the trimmings. Escape, as she regularly did, for a refined time at this leading hotel known as London’s Country Estate. At the heart of the 18th Century mansion house is Colette’s Restaurant where a marvellous menu is cooked up by the National Chef of the Year, Russell Bateman.
Two festive menus on offer: Haiku £65 for 3 course a la carte available Tuesday to Thursday or the Special £35 for 3 course menu available on following dates: Tuesday 1st, Wednesday 9th December, Tuesday 15th December, Tuesday 22nd December and Wednesday 23rd December.
4. Huttusa Restaurant, Berwick Lodge, Bristol
Enjoy the magical tradition and warm welcome at Berwick Lodge with its comfy sofas and roaring fire. This country retreat has a rich history and boasts an excellent restaurant.
Example festive menu (£30 for 3 course lunch Monday-Thursday, £35 Friday and Saturday):
Starter: Lamb Belly, Beetroot, Anchovy, Black Olive Caramel, Goats Curd
Main Course: Bronze Turkey Breast and Leg, Apricot and Sage Stuffing, Crispy Potatoes, Sprouts, Chestnuts, Bacon and Cranberry Sauce OR Sea Trout
Verjus Butter, Golden Raisins, Smoked Pancetta, Kale, Violet Potatoes
Dessert: Chocolate and Chestnut Mille-Feuille, Orange and White Chocolate Sorbet
5. Gravetye Manor, Nr. East Grinstead, Sussex
Gravetye is a glorious, unspoilt Elizabethan Manor House dating from 1598. Furnished with antiquities, squeaking floors and log fires, it can best be described as a quintessential English home with 17 bedrooms if you fancy a stopover. And of course this year it celebrated a Michelin star. Get all sparkly here.
Example festive menu (£65 for 3 course lunch Monday to Saturday)
Starter: Glazed “Tart” of Pig Cheek and Penny Bun roasted celeriac and pear sorbet
Main course: Roasted Breast and Confit Thigh of Guinea Fowl cauliflower, English truffle, pak choi, potato and thyme pressing and mead sauce OR Pine Smoked Haunch of Local Venison Crown Prince pumpkin, kale, granola and game jus
Dessert: Raspberry Crumble Soufflé clotted cream ice cream, raspberry and mint compote
6. Luton Hoo, Luton, Bedfordshire
Lose yourself behind the magnificent facade of the Mansion House and enjoy the grandeur of a bygone age. The ultra-elegant Wernher Restaurant provides a truly spectacular backdrop reminiscent of the Palace of Versailles.
Example festive menu (Wernher Restaurant £30 for 3 course lunch Wednesday to Sunday)
Starter: Potted Pink Shrimp and Crayfish with Bloody Mary Dressing, Avocado, Citrus Salsa and Wholemeal Toast
Main course: Traditional Norfolk Bronze Turkey Roast Potatoes, Sage and Onion Stuffing, Chipolatas in Pancetta, Seasonal Vegetables and Roast Pan Juices OR Pumpkin and Basil Fondant with Wilted Greens, Root Vegetables, Salsify Chips and Truffle Cream (v)
Dessert: Traditional Christmas Pudding with Brandy Sauce and Clotted Cream
7. André Garrett at Cliveden, Taplow, Berkshire
Cliveden provides a magical and very special backdrop for Christmas entertaining. From the giant Nordmann fir in the Great Hall, abundant decorations all around the house to the roaring fires, matched in warmth by the hospitality of their staff, Cliveden is certainly one of the finest choices around.
Example festive a la carte menu (£72.50 for 3 course a la carte)
Starter: English Rose Veal and Porthilly Oyster Tartare, Exmoor Caviar, Dashi, Nasturtium, Sourdough Melba
Main Course: Roasted Yorkshire Red Leg Partridge, Parsley Root, Salsify, Muscat, Walnut Crumble
Dessert: Homemade mincemeat tart white chocolate crumble, muscovado ice cream
8. Estate Grill, Great Fosters, Egham, Surrey
Great Fosters at Christmas is full of romance and luxury. Beautifully decked in Christmas decorations throughout, share in the Grade I listed hotel’s rich heritage with some of the best festive dining around in its elegant Estate Grill.
Example festive menu (£32 for 3 course lunch Monday to Saturday and £37 on Sunday)
Starter: Confit Salmon, Choucroute, Vanilla and Cranberry Dressing
Main course: Traditional Roast Turkey, Chestnut Stuffing,
Chipolata, Caramelised Sprouts and Cranberry Sauce OR Roast Fillet of Cod, Sarladaise, Cucumber Emulsion, Brown Shrimp
Dessert: Christmas Pudding, Cherry Compote and Brandy Sauce
9. Restaurant Coworth Park, Coworth Park, Ascot, Berkshire
Head to the relaxed elegance of Coworth, part of the world exclusive Dorchester Collection. Glamorous yet comfortable the exquisite cuisine of Restaurant Coworth Park showcases a modern outlook on classical British dishes.
Example festive menu (£35 for 3 course lunch- includes glass of house wine, tea, coffee and hand made chocolates)
Starter: Trio of Scottish salmon
Main course: Ballotine of turkey with roasted root vegetables, potatoes and chestnuts OR Pan seared halibut, crab potato cake and shellfish nage
Dessert: Dark chocolate, cherry and kirsch yule log
10. Aviator Hotel, Farnborough
For sheer style and sophistication this year look no further than The Aviator By Tag. Inspired by classic Vogue and Vanity Fair magazine covers and the famous photographers of our time, Aviator will transform into a month-long glittering celebration fuelled with glamour, style and sophistication.
Example festive menu (£29.50 for 3-course lunch):
Starter – Confit duck ragout with cauliflower velouté and black truffle shavings
Main Course – Roast breast of turkey with ballotine turkey leg stuffed with cranberry & chestnuts, bread & cranberry sauce and ‘all the trimmings’ OR Filet of stone bass with polenta gnocchi, celeriac purée and mussels
Dessert – Prune & Armagnac rice pudding with raisin shortbread
11. Chewton Glen, New Forest, Hampshire
There is something very, very grand and very Christmas about this famous 5 AA Red Star destination. Chewton Glen knows just how to do Christmas – relaxed, stylish, innovative and bags of fun, it has been a purveyor of some of the very best Xmas’s since the 60’s. Festive menus have lots of choices.
Example festive menu (£37 for 3 courses lunch, £60 for 5 course dinner)
Starter: Celeriac, Parsnip & Apple Soup with Blue Cheese Beignets
Main Course: Roast New Forest ‘Wrolstad’ Bronze Turkey with Traditional Trimmings & Roasted Vegetables
Desserts: Warm Chocolate Mousse, Tonka Bean Ice Cream & Salted Nuts
12. Seaham Hall, Byron’s Bar & Grill, County Durham
Seaham Hall comes into its own at this time of year. A perfect sanctuary for snug winter days or evenings and a cosy getaway from those winter blues. The Byron’s Bar & Grill in the mansion house offers a scrumptious destination to bring in Christmas.
Example festive menu (£30 for 3 course lunch Monday – Friday)
Starter: Goosnargh duck pressing with spiced brioche and apricot
Main course: Traditional roast Bronze turkey with chestnut stuffing, chipolata sausage, button sprouts and cranberry sauce OR Slow cooked blade beef with smoted potato puree and sweet carrot
Dessert: Christmas pudding, cherry compote and brandy sauce
13. Greywalls, Chez Roux, Muirfield, Edinburgh
Not just a golfers Christmas paradise with its views over the 9th and 18th holes of the famous greens of Muirfield, but also a diners. Home to Chez Rouz and the recent winner of Best Fine Dining Restaurant East Lothian 2015 accolade, Greywalls is a stylish, tranquil retreat full of Edwardian splendour and Scottish hospitality. Perfect to get you feeling relaxed and full of winter cheer.
Example festive menu available from 1st December (£28.50 for a 3 course lunch, £31.50 for a three course dinner)
Starter: Braised Ox-Tail in Crepinette with Smoked Bone Marrow and Dandelion Salad
Main Course: Breast of Borders Pheasant and mini pie, with Dauphinoise Potato and Broccoli, Light Pheasant Jus with Tarragon Oil
Dessert: Homemade Christmas Pudding, Brandy Sauce
14. Dukes London – THIRTY SIX by Nigel Mendham
With long-established traditions and fantastic trimmings, Dukes lends itself perfectly to this time of year. As a holder of the World’s Ultimate Service award, attention to detail and exacting standards are evident. Join in the celebratory fun with the finest 3 AA Rosette food in Thirty Six restaurant.
Example festive set menu available from 1st December (£42 for 3 course lunch to include a welcome glass of Prosecco, £49 for dinner to include a welcome glass of Prosecco)
Starter: Rabbit with Apple, Celeriac, Mustard Seed, Raisin
Main Course: Pheasant with Confit Swede, Charred Sprouts, Rillet, Winter Leaves
Dessert: Rice Pudding with Caramelised Pineapple, Coconut Ice, Macadamia Nut and Coriander
15. The Spread Eagle, Midhurst, West Sussex
For that special time of year where better to spend a classic Christmas than this very special building dating back to 1430. Characterised by roaring log-fires, oak-panelled rooms and ancient timbers in the heart of the medieval market town of Midhurst, book to dine here to unlock fond memories of bygone Christmas’s past.
Example set festive lunch menu (£19.50 for 2 courses, £23 for 3 courses
Starter: Roasted Pumpkin Soup with Smoked Salmon Cream
Main Course: Traditional Roast Turkey with Rosemary Potatoes, Bacon Chipolatas, Cheshnut Stuffing, Brussels Sprouts, Carrots, Bread Sauce and Cranberry Sauce
Dessert: The Spread Eagle’s Famous Christmas Pudding with Brandy Sauce
Full menu link here. Details of club offer and timings (member dines complimentary) here.
16. Hartwell House, Nr. Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire
For a grand launch to Christmas we recommend a trip to historic stately home and National Trust treasure of Hartwell House. Meet in the relaxed and welcoming atmosphere of one of the magnificent drawing rooms with a glass of Prosecco and canapes before enjoying the delicious menus.
Example festive menu from 1st to 23rd December, excluding Sunday (£40 for courses with Prosecco
Starter: Smoked salmon filled with a smoked fish and crab mousse with beetroot caviar
Main Course: Roasted breast of Chiltern Valley pheasant, with sauté Savoy cabbage, pancetta lardons and chestnuts, Hartwell honey glazed carrots, creamed potatoes, rich red wine sauce
Dessert: Layered Valrhona Azelia and Opyals chocolate mousse on feuilletine biscuit topped with cranberry jelly with poached raspberries and cranberry and raspberry sorbet
Coffee and mince pies
17. Ashdown Park Hotel & Country Club, Nr. Forest Row, Sussex
The magnificent manor house of Ashdown Park Hotel, within its 186 acre estate in the heart of Ashdown Forest, provides the perfect welcoming setting for a traditional and cosy Christmas. Throughout December the Anderida Restaurant is serving 4 different choices per course of marvellous festive fayre.
Example festive menu from 1st to 23rd December (£27.50 for 3 course lunch Monday to Saturday, Sunday lunch £30, £42.50 for 3 course dinner for Monday to Saturday.
Starter: Hot Smoked Salmon Terrine, Whipped Horseradish, Pickled Apple
Main Course: Traditional Roast Local Turkey, Apricot and Sage Stuffing, Smoked Bacon, Savoy Cabbage, Cranberry and Orange Preserve
Dessert: Steamed Traditional Christmas Pudding, Ginger Ice Cream, Pistachio Crumble
18. L’Ortolan, Shinfield, Nr. Reading, Berkshire
Foodies will love this treat in the Michelin-starred L’Ortolan. The Grade II listed building gets into full party swing for a taste of true luxury, exquisite wines and super-friendly service. There are plenty of choices for you to indulge in.
Example festive menus (£38 for 3 course lunch, £48 for 6 course festive tasting lunch, £55 for 6 course festive midweek dinner)
Starter: Pan Fried Mackerel, Ponzu Dressed Mackerel, Tartare, Miso
Main Course: Roasted Beef Rump of Beef, Pomme Puree, Textures of Cauliflower, Red Wine Jus
Dessert: Christmas Pudding, Cinnamon & Nutmeg Streusel, Rum Crème Anglaise, Cointreau Sorbet
19. Galvin at Windows, London W1
Treat someone special to a memorable pre-Christmas lunch or dinner at the Michelin-starred Galvin at Windows on Park Lane. With 360-degree views and an exquisite French menu this is a perfect landmark destination.
Example festive menu (£80 for 3 courses from 25 November to 24 December)
Starter: Veloute of Wild Mushroom served with Poached Hen Egg and Potato Cream
Main Course: Braised Ox Cheeks served with Foie Gras, Root Vegetables and Jus Diablo
Dessert: Tarte Tatin of Williams Pear served with Vanilla Ice Cream and Caramel Sauce
20. Humphry’s at Stoke Park, Stoke Poges, Buckinghamshire
And exhale! Picture yourself relaxing in the warmth of hospitality at Stoke Park, one of the most famous country landmark houses. This magical destination offers both excellent value for money, incredible service and a five choices per course on a superb festive pre-Christmas menu.
Example festive menu (£36 for 3 courses for lunch or dinner)
Starter: Lobster Bisque with Mini Lobster Ravioli
Main Course: Roast Turkey with Traditional Accompaniments, Seasonal Vegetables and Herb Roasted Potatoes
Dessert: Spiced Citrus Fruit Jelly with Mandarin Sorbet, Citrus Foam and Chocolate Sauce
21. Chinese Cricket Club Restaurant, Crowne Plaza London
Located on the corner of New Bridge Street in Blackfriars, we invite you experience the modern menu of Sichuan specialities created by Executive head chef Ken Wang. For those that prefer an asian twist to their turkey!
Example festive menu (£35 for 4 course lunch)
Starter: Crispy squid in salt and pepper and Crispy Aromatic Duck
Main course: Diced Turkey with Kung-po sauce
Dessert: Traditional Christmas pudding with brandy sauce
22. The Riverside Restaurant at The Compleat Angler, Marlow, Buckinghamshire
Add some sparkle to your season at the Compleat Angler. Its setting overlooking the Marlow Weir is hugely impressive both night and day. Atmospheric, intimate and memorable, this newly revamped restaurant is a perfect stop for Santa.
Example festive menu (£25 for 2 course lunch, £28.50 for 3 course lunch, £39.50 for 2 course dinner and £45.50 for 3 course dinner)
Starter: Burnt Honey and Parsnip Soup
Main Course: Roast British Turkey with Sage and Onion Stuffing, Roast Potatoes, Seasonal Vegetables, Pigs in Blankets and Bread Sauce
Dessert: ‘Hot Chocolate’ Mousse and Vanilla Marshmallow
23. Belmond British Pullman, London to various locations
Step on board Belmond British Pullman – sister train to the Venice Simpson-Orient Express, and experience fine dining on a luxury train with ever changing views. This is the ultimate Christmas dining experience where from the moment you join the train you will be transported to a world of pure indulgence. Take a seat in one of the vintage 1920’s carriages for a stylish trip gliding through stunning scenery. Expect glamour, fine dining and fun on Belmond British Pullman.
Festive trips from £370 includes round trip from London Victoria, table top magicians, 5 course lunch with Champagne and half a bottle of wine per person.
24. Rudding Park, Harrogate, North Yorkshire
With crisp winter mornings, roaring log fires and carols in the Chapel, Rudding Park is a magical place to experience Christmas – check out their fun Christmas photography. Award-winning Rudding Park is one of the most beautiful Harrogate hotels and voted the Best UK Hotel outside London by TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice Awards 2015. Take a trip to The Clocktower Restaurant for a healthy dose of merriment.
Example festive menu from 1st to 23 December (£44 for 3 courses, or prebook for discounted prices £26 for lunch Monday to Thursday or £31.50 for Friday, £37 over weekend. £36.50 for dinner Sunday to Thursday and £42.50 for Friday and Saturday). Choices of 4 dishes per course.
Starter: Confit Duck, Tangerine & Cumin Jam and Watercress Salad
Main Course: Pork Fillet, Serrano Ham, Honey Roast Baby Parsnips, Pommes Puree, Crispy Kale
Dessert: Clementine Panna Cotta, Cranberry Compote, Orange and Walnut Brittle
25. Paris House, Woburn Park, Milton Keynes, Bedfordshire
Enjoy an unforgettable festive culinary journey at Phil Fanning’s divine Paris House with his seasonal six course tasting menu. Bursting with delightful produce and all highlighted with Christmas extravagance, this Michelin restaurant is set in a 22 acre deer park – guaranteed to get you in the spirit.
Six course festive lunch tasting menu £52 per person includes:
Starter: Duck Liver, Pumpkin, Grape and Kombu
Main course: Lobster, Cockles, Braised Red Cabbage and Soured Beetroot
Dessert: Tiramisu, Coffee, Chocolate and Frangelico