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New in Somerset & Exmoor for 2019

February 7, 2019 Visit Europe No Comments Email Email

Places to stay …

Locanda on the Weir, Porlock Weir, Somerset – Rooms from £115 to £200 per night

Set in the heart of Exmoor National Park in front of the 15th Century harbour at Porlock Weir, Locanda on the Weir is a beautifully designed boutique hotel, perfect for a few days away enjoying sea air and fantastic food.

With a choice of 5
bedrooms, most with sea views across Porlock Bay, residents can relax in the Reading Room over drinks ahead of dinner where Italian wines which are reflected in the seasonal menus of locally sourced cuisine.
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Duende –  5 course tasting menu for £40
Nearby, in Wiveliscombe near Taunton, is Duende Restaurant, which started as a pop up led by Chef Tim Zekki. previously known for his secret suppers in his delis in Twickenham and Isleworth, and a Finalist in UKTV’s Gary Rhodes’ Local Food Heroes.  Duende was awarded Restaurant of the Year, 2018 by Somerset Life, and a Gold award by Taste of the West, and during February evenings will be running a special 5 course tasting menu, for £40 (with optional wine pairing menu) as well as its standard wine and drinks menu. Tasting menus remain a secret until the night as they are influenced by the seasons and the best local produce available.  The restaurant has also just started offering a lunch time a la carte menu.
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Whilst diners looking to stay overnight could book into Locanda on the Weir, over in Brompton Ralph, Middle Stone Farm also has a selection of award-winning luxury glamping options available in safari lodges, cabins and also a cottage.
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Treats to try …
NEW Range of Rice Pudding Ice Creams created by Granny Gothards
New Flavours promised from the Grown Up Marshmallows team
Grown Up Marshmallows are gourmet, handmade, marshmallows that are naturally free from fat, egg, gluten and dairy
products.  Hand produced in small batches on Exmoor National Park, they contain fresh fruit and/or the best quality Fair-Trade chocolate, bringing a unique taste experience different to the traditional taste and texture of traditional marshmallows.
Handmade with 100% natural ingredients and packaged in 100% recyclable, biodegradable, compostable material, current flavours cost £5.99 and include: Just Gin, Dipped Chocolate, Raspberry Chocolate Drizzle, Salted Peanut & Caramel, Sicilian Lemon, Summer Fruit.  Exciting new flavours are promised for 2019 but for now lips are sealed.
More details:  or 
Focus on Food Markets…
Launched in Glastonbury in 1999,  Somerset Farmers Markets quickly built up a network of markets around Somerset and Bath, staying true to its original purpose, often one step ahead of environmental issues.  Created out of  ‘Agenda 21’ funding as a direct result of the 1st climate change summit in Rio (when the United Nations developed a plan that each local government should ‘act locally’ to prevent climate change by promoting local initiatives focusing on sustainable development and counteracting the damaging effects of globalisation) its aim was to reverse the demise of small family farms and re-introduce the concept of buying local food directly from farmers, growers, brewers, cheese & cider makers, bakers, chefs and preserve makers.
Twenty years on Somerset Farmers’ Markets Ltd now hold markets in eight locations across Somerset, each with its own distinct character:
• Axbridge held in the town’s medieval square, 9am to 1pm, first Saturday of the month
 Midsomer Norton, 9am to 1pm, first Saturday of the month
• Frome, in the town centre , 10am to 3pm on the first Sunday of the month
• Frome, inside the historic Cheese & Grain Hall, 9-1pm, second Saturday of the month
• Keynsham, 9am to 1pm on the second Saturday of the month
• Crewkerne, 9am to 1pm on the third Saturday of the month
• Glastonbury, 9am to 2pm on the fourth Saturday of the month
 Burnham-on-Sea, in the High Street, 9am to 1pm on the last Friday of the month
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Winner of Winners at the recent Bristol, Bath & Somerset Tourism Awards, eat Festivals similarly look to celebrate local producers by putting on festivals that benefit local traders, producers and visitors alike.  Each festival is designed to bring a wide range of producers and products into the town.  Alongside a cook school, demo stage, livestock and lots of entertainment the events trade from around 9am to 5pm, with peak hours between 11 and 2.

The next event is on 13 April, inside in the Italian Gardens at Weston-super-Mare, then they’ll be at Castle Cary on 4 May, Taunton on 11 May, Burnham on 25 May, Crewkerne on 20 July, Portishead on 10 August, Wellington on 7 September, Weston on 28 September,  Nailsea on 5 October, Minehead on 12 October and Burnham on 26 October.
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Reminder: Five places to spot Snowdrops in Somerset

• 23/24 February, Bishop’s Palace, Wells  has a Snowdrop Walk Guide.
• February onwards, Prior Park Landscape Garden, Bath – 18th-century landscape garden.
• Until Sunday 3 March,   Snowdrop Valley – A beautiful, secret, Snowdrop Valley in Exmoor.
•  9 & 15 February,  Elworthy Cottage Garden, Taunton  –  Famous for its snowdrop collection.
• Until 31 October           East Lambrook Manor Gardens – One of England’s best loved cottage gardens.

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