I’ve always maintained that a good meal is worth making an effort for, so I decided to gather together 5 of the best lunches worth travelling around the world for – the noonday repasts that I have loved and would happily travel again for.
There’s a real combination in this list- from 2-Michelin starred luxurious hotels to simple, delicious treats accompanied by the fresh sea air – and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
From Bournemouth to New Zealand, these are 5 of the best lunches worth travelling around the world for – in my very, very subjective opinion.
My Dad’s Bacon and Egg Pie.
I have scooted several times around the world for this Kiwi treat, and I will do it all over again.
It’s especially good cold the day after baking, after a morning of adventuring around New Zealand’s Coromandel Peninsula. But any Kiwi worth their salt knows that!
We tumbled out of our cab like thirsty gazelles, doe-eyed and excited to be leaving London for the day. We were having lunch at Coworth Park with one of our favourite people in the world – that fabulous Sophia, accompanied by her Mum, Polly, the English rose who has transplanted herself to the desert sands of Doha.
One of the bastions of the Dorchester Collection, Coworth Hotel is a country retreat surrounded by 240 acres of picturesque parkland studded with wildflowers, an equestrian centre, polo fields, kids’ club and plenty of outdoor pursuits – but we were there for one reason, and one reason only this time.
We had a table booked in the titular restaurant, which has been proudly awarded the Michelin star of excellence for Chef Adam Smith’s menu. The relaxed elegance of Restaurant Coworth Park really showcases a modern outlook on classic British dishes, with stunning views both inside and out. (Read about our full lunch at Coworth Park here.)
RICK STEIN, SANDBANKS, POOLE
The team at Rick Stein’s were wonderful. Not only did they not bat an eyelid at my solo status, but they put me on the most wonderful table with a view out over the beautiful Poole harbour. In fact, it was probably the second best table in the whole restaurant – the nicest being taken by a family of four who all ordered battered fish and chips. Utter sacrilege.
My feast began simply, and gorgeously: unadulterated oysters. Porthilly Pacific oysters from Rock in Cornwall, and Brownsea Island oysters locally farmed – served in the half shell with a classic Mignonette (a sherry vinegar and finely chopped shallot) accompaniment that had me closing my eyes in pleasure. Oysters are very much a vegemite dish, but I love their taste of the ocean. (Read more about my oceanic feast at Rick Stein’s here.)
I said it before, and I’ll say it again – there are many bloggers who are getting flack about sharing their love of travelling solo. It isn’t for everyone – but then neither are berets. It shouldn’t be a rite of passage shoved down the throats of unwilling accessories (see what I did there?), but simply another tool in the wanderlust arsenal.
I began the day in my own London bed, took in a world famous gallery of Impressionist art, made sure the Eiffel Tower was still in it’s usual spot, nibbled Macaron, visited my favourite chapel in the world and fell back to sleep with my very own cat tucked around my feet.
Discovering the cute little bistro Les Antiquaires, my starter was a slab of fois gras served with crusty bread and piquant cherry jam, followed with perfectly cooked steak and a glass of dry white wine. Perfection for warming the cockles.
We found ourselves soaking in the sunshine between rain showers and learning how to play croquet on the perfectly manicured lawns of Raymond Blanc’s 2 Michelin starred Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons.
Life has a funny way of taking us down paths we don’t quite expect, sometimes quite literally.
Found in the rolling hills of Oxfordshire, tucked between a beautiful grey stone church and close to a picturesque windmill, Le Manoir is found down winding little countryside roads in the village of Great Milton. Despite my best efforts to talk my friend into a quick recce at the windmill, we rolled into the car park with time to simply soak in the beautiful atmosphere properly (and actually in retrospect with coffee in hand it was definitely the right choice…)
After champagne and canapes on the lawn, we were called in for lunch in one of the beautiful conservatories… (read more of our exquisite Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons experience here.)
What/where was your most memorable lunch?