A slightly sweaty, beautifully sunny summer's day, the seven of us dined in the garden after a refreshing gin cooler. The house looked newly decorated and was gorgeously colourful. I got some house envy. A salad of watermelon, halloumi and green beans was sweet, salty, juicy and crunchy all at the same time. The sweetness of the watermelon worked brilliantly with the halloumi.
Duck with puy lentils braised in cider was crispy skinned, though cooked more than I'd have liked. The meat lacked a little seasoning but was moist and tender. Lentils were suitably cidery, with sweet bursts from the pomegranate seeds and peppery hits from the watercress. Just the right amount of food too.
Earl grey pannacotta with boozy berries and poppyseed biscuits was well accomplished. The pannacotta had a proper hit of the tea flavour, and the berries, almost face puckeringly sour when eaten alone, balanced the sweetness of the biscuits and the pannacotta well.
Cheese, served with home-made spelt biscuits were all from the UK. A particular favourite was the Scottish cheddar, and the chutney served with it was delicious. Biscuits were a little too thick and therefore a bit heavy with the cheese, but I was so stuffed at this point I needed a less substantial recepticle to get the cheese in my face. My greed sees no boundaries.
Coffee followed, and we sat around chatting until darkness fell and goosebumps appeared. For £25 and to bring your own booze, it was a great evening; really interesting and chatty people, and lovely hosts in Julie and Sophie, who sat down with us at the end. Heartily recommended.