Barley Wood Walled Garden, Wrington, Somerset
Restored Barley Wood Walled Garden is home to a restaurant where you can eat and drink like an ethicurean. Taste inspiring artisan dishes, sourced from the locality, that brim with flavour. Have a vermouth adventure too.
Have lunch at The Ethicurean restaurant in Barley Wood Walled Garden
The Ethicurean restaurant is founded on ‘a sense of place’, and what a place it is. Housed in the glasshouse and brick buildings of Barley Wood Walled Garden, the setting is truly beautiful. From the rolling Mendip hills in the distance, to the stunning borders packed with perennials, it resonates peace and harmony. With soulful and seasonal cuisine and a convivial, authentic experience, this is a place to treasure.The Foodie Travel Guide
- Eat lunch in the restaurant
- Come for a feast night or special event
- Taste homemade vermouth, cider and apple juice
- Visit the resident artists
Barley Wood – a Restored Victorian Kitchen Garden
To fully appreciate the setting, you need to know the story. Built in 1901 for Henry Herbert Wills, director of the Imperial Tobacco Company, Barley Wood Walled Garden thrived until the 1970s when, through a combination of savings and neglect, its heart was slowly ripped out. The yew hedges and arch were replaced with high concrete walls and the brick paths with tarmac. Salvation came in 1993, under a new owner, with a complete restoration. Today, Barley Wood celebrates its heritage with old cambered brick paths, flower borders, an orchard and a thriving vegetable garden.
Eat Like an Ethicurean
Located in the rustic former glasshouse, The Ethicurean restaurant is a family affair, run by brothers Matthew and Iain Pennington, both self-taught chefs. Ethically conscious, the emphasis is on British food incorporating vegetables from the kitchen garden and foraged, wild food from the surrounding area. Innovative and colourful dishes are presented in an environment where simplicity matters creating a harmonious and unpretentious dining experience. From Wednesday to Saturday, five course feasts are served in the evening but at other times, you can pop in for tea and cake or lunch.
Try The Collector’s Vermouth
The team are keen drinks enthusiasts. With over 80 types of old English apples grown in the orchard, they continue the garden’s 100 year-old tradition of making their own apple juice and cider. Their experimentation with different flavours has led them to create a house vermouth known as The Collector. It’s a complex blend of 20 botanicals, including herbs grown in the garden, blended with white wine and caramel made in the restaurant’s kitchen.
- The Ethicurean hosts specials events including feast nights for the annual wassail in January and the summer solstice
- The restaurant is popular, so it’s advisable to book in advance
- Buy The Ethicurean cookbook to create British dishes such as pork and juniper pie and desserts of Eccles cake with Dorset Blue Vinny & sherry sauce and a milk stout steamed pudding
- Barley Wood Garden runs its own veg box scheme
- Visit the the old estate workshops which are home to resident artists including potters
Where to Stay in Somerset
The Swan at Wedmore
The Swan offers fresh and modern rooms in the tranquil Somerset village of Wedmore.
Rooms from £68 a night.
They tell me they are sorry but dogs are not allowed at Barley Wood Walled Garden.