Top places for an early Christmas lunch
This festive season many of our places will be serving up delicious Christmas dinners.
You can expect to find traditional turkey with seasonal trimmings and homemade Christmas puds with lashings of cream.
Here’s our pick of some of the best places to indulge in an early Christmas lunch:
Powis Castle is a medieval castle, fortress and grand country estate with stunning views and a cascading terraced garden. From 22 November you can enjoy a festive lunch menu in Lady Henrietta's tea-room. Highlights included braised estate venison in port and thyme jus and roast Welsh turkey with all the trimmings.
* Dates: 22 November to 22 December 2013
* Times: 10am-4pm
* Cost: One course lunch - £11.95, two course lunch - £15.95, three course lunch - £19.95
Booking is essential please call 01938 551927.
There are over 2,000 hectares of heather covered hills, rolling farmland, woods and river valleys to explore at Carding Valley Mill and the Shropshire Hills, and this festive season there are plenty of reasons to take a pit stop at the Chalet Pavilion tea-room, not least the delicious Christmas lunch menu. Highlights include caramelised onion and Shropshire blue cheese tartlet accompanied by foraged crab apple jelly (foraged locally by volunteers on Hopesay Hill).
* Dates: 29 Nov- 23 Dec 2013 (Friday to Sunday in December)
* Times: Lunchtime
* Cost: two courses £15.95, three courses £18.95
* Booking line: 01694 725007
Larger groups can be accommodated for outside of the times above, please just call the booking line to arrange.
When Stourhead first opened in the 1740s, a magazine described it as ‘a living work of art’. The world-famous landscape garden has at its centre-piece a magnificent lake reflecting classical temples, mystical grottoes, and rare and exotic trees. The award-winning restaurant will be offering a festive menu from 1 December with seasonal favourites including apple and parsnip soup, traditional roast turkey or roast beef and crunchy apple and almond tart with clotted cream.
* Dates: 1-22 December 2013
* Times: 12-3pm
* Cost: Two courses £17.50 or three courses for £22.50
* Booking line: 01747 842006
Just over 7 miles from the hustle and bustle of Bristol is the Tyntesfield estate, with its fairytale-like Gothic mansion and chapel, terraced gardens, parkland and productive kitchen garden. From 1 December the Cow Barn restaurant will be serving a two and three course Christmas menu. Highlights include winter vegetable and pearl broth, roast turkey and Christmas pudding with mulled wine syrup and brandy cream.
* Dates: 1-24 December 2013
* Times: 12pm-2.30pm
* Cost: Two courses £18 or three courses for £20
* Booking line: 01275 461 965
Stowe is often said to be the greatest landscape garden in the world. With more than 40 temples and monuments dotted around its sculpted grounds, it is Capability Brown’s masterpiece. Between 2 and 24 December you can pre-book Christmas lunch in the Nevillery café, the two course menu features vegetables from nearby Claydon and locally sourced turkey and venison.
* Dates: 2–20 December 2013 (Monday – Friday only)
* Times: 12-3pm
* Cost: £15 per person
* Booking line: 01280 825014
Scotney Castle is a surprisingly mix of influences spanning centuries, there’s a Victorian country mansion, the ruins of a 14th-century castle (complete with moat), a romantic garden, acres of parkland and woodland plus a hop farm. This Christmas you can experience a three course festive lunch in the tea-room with dishes including beef and Scotney ale stew, goats cheese and beetroot tart and clementine jelly for pud.
* Dates: 2-22 December 2013
* Times: 12- 2pm
* Cost: Two courses £16.95 or three courses for £20.95
* Booking line: 01892 893869
With peeling paintwork and overgrown courtyards, Calke Abbey tells the story of the dramatic decline of a country house estate. From the 5 December you can enjoy a three-course lunch including coffee and homemade truffles. Highlights include braised and rolled Calke estate venison and Fowlers cheese with Calke’s homemade pickle.
* Dates: 17 and 18 December 2013
* Times: 12pm 12.30pm 1pm 1.30pm 2pm and 2.30pm
* Cost: £24.50
* Booking line: 01332 695310
Knightshayes is a Victorian country manor of looming gargoyles and medieval romanticism, outside there’s a two-acre walled garden and one of the finest woodland gardens in England. During weekends in December you can feast on a Christmas carvery with a choice of locally roasted beef or turkey or homemade parsnip, cranberry and chestnut loaf.
* Dates: 22 December 2013
* Times: 12-2.30pm
* Cost: adult £9.75 and child £5.95 (under 12)
For more information please call: 01884 257381.
Built by Henry Holland, with gardens and parkland designed by 'Capability' Brown, Berrington Hall was created as the perfect home in the perfect setting. This December you can enjoy a three-course Christmas lunch in the tea-room, with traditional festive favourites including Herefordshire beef or Worcestershire turkey with all the trimmings.
* Dates: 14-23 December 2013
* Times: 12-3pm
* Cost: £19.95 per person
* Contact: 01568 615721