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Mostly Food & Travel Journal

Hotel TerraVina for Bed and Breakfast

Hotel TerraVina Dining

 

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Hotel Reviews
- Hotel Terravina

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Hotel TerraVina for Bed and Breakfast

Hotel TerraVina Dining


Hotel TerraVina for Bed and Breakfast

TerraVina We are blessed with many fine hotels in the UK. All the 5* chains are well represented in all major cities. But we also have a wealth of boutique and Country House hotels and each is unique and characterful. The New Forest is beautiful and mostly unspoilt and it also has hotels which reflect the area’s style and culture. Hotel TerraVina is one such hotel.

Hotel TerraVina has a reputation for quality and is recognised as one of the best hotels in the area – and in this case it’s well-deserved. It’s impressive in an accessible fashion. It’s whimsical rather than intimidating. One seems to enter a private home – but a home owned by folks with impeccably good taste and a flair for cosy.

Owners Gerard Basset and his wife Nina purchased the hotel, conveniently close to Southampton, in early 2007. They spent months renovating, using the evident high skills of local craftspeople. This hotel is reminiscent of the best of similar accommodations in California or even Oregon wine country. There are wine connections aplenty and you will learn more in an article to follow shortly.

TerraVina There are lots of public spaces but all are intimate and well proportioned. The restaurant is renowned, and leads off to a covered terrace ideal for afternoon tea during the summer. The gardens are fringed with mature trees, and a swimming pool in the corner tempts the travel-weary tourist, and children who aren’t weary at all.

There are charming design details here and perhaps that’s no surprise, as Nina has had a career in hotel hospitality. She knows what works. TerraVina Dogs lounge on every bed but won’t need walkies as they are stuffed and act as Don’t Disturb notices for the staff or as door stops. The rooms are individually designed and all are well-appointed. Bathrooms are luxurious with tubs complete with rubber duck. The toiletries are local and hand-made from organically-grown lavender, and are eminently stealable, although there might not be much left after a brace of long and lingering hot baths x 2. Our room had the advantage of a totally private roof terrace with a view over treetops. Nothing skimpy here, just acres of space complete with loungers and associated outdoor furniture.

TerraVina Yes, there are all the usual entertainment and technology features but it’s the calming ambiance which will assure a return visit to this country haven. So may hotels mention the quality of their beds and I have never noticed any difference between those and my own, purchased from a favourite Scandinavian home-goods store. But Hotel TerraVina presented a bed in which to sink, in which to wallow, in which to snuggle. Yes, that’s it! This hotel is a classy snuggle and the hospitality equivalent of soothing music, good book and soft sofa.

Food is a huge element, or should be, of any break away, and breakfast is not only an important but an eagerly anticipated meal. Once again the owners have a finger on the pulse of their guests. The menu is classic but the brekkie aficionado will note the inclusion of soft-boiled eggs and soldiers! That touch alone should convey the sensitivity and wisdom of both Nina and Gerard Basset. A simple gesture, but summing up the hotel in general. This is a fun display of polished yet natural cachet with delicious flourishes, and I am already planning the next trip.

terravina
Hotel TerraVina
174 Woodlands Road
Woodlands
Netley Marsh
New Forest
Hampshire
SO40 7GL

Phone: +44 (0)2380 293 784

Fax: +44 (0)23 80 293 627

Email: info@hotelterravina.co.uk

Visit Hotel TerraVina here

food and travel reviews

Hotel TerraVina Dining

Hotel TerraVina Dining Hotel TerraVina is a gem. It’s a well-appointed house – well, it seems like someone’s home (read the accommodation review here). A line of colourful wellies in the hall welcomes the arriving guests. The rooms are individually designed and the beds are the best I have ever slept on! One might not want to leave one’s private idyll but that would be a shame, as dinner awaits, and a very fine one, too.

Owners Gerard Basset and his wife Nina purchased the hotel, conveniently close to Southampton, in early 2007. This is recognised far and wide as a Wine Connoisseurs’ Hotel in the New Forest, and there are plenty of associations with wine here – starting with Gerard himself.

Gerard Basset OBE is one of the world’s most respected sommeliers (‘World’s Best Sommelier 2010’) so it’s natural that he would want fine vintages at the forefront of Hotel TerraVina’s attractions, of which there are many. There are wine events at the hotel including tutored wine tastings and wine dinners to draw the enthusiast. Exclusive wine gift boxes, signed by Gerard, are a very classy gift and they are available from the hotel. There are bespoke wine glasses for the budding sommelier and they are truly unique and designed by Gerard himself.

Hotel TerraVina Dining Food is a huge element of any break away and the restaurant mirrors the standard of the wine list. The bar leads onto the dining area with views over the well-established garden. Banquettes as well as tables for couples are spaced for either conviviality or privacy. It isn’t a huge restaurant and it’s all the better for that. It has intimate charm and contemporary grace with a hint of ‘across the Pond’.

It was their love of California wine country and its restaurants that inspired Nina to design a place that captured the ambiance of those stylish corners. They use fresh, free-range and organic produce from local New Forest suppliers wherever possible, so the menu changes with the seasons. This is a ‘destination’ rather than a culinary pit-stop and that changing bill of fare will encourage regulars.

Hotel TerraVina Dining We enjoyed starters of Salt-cured Hake with Anchovy beignets and, keeping with the piscatorial theme, Tartare of Salmon with egg yolk, crème fraiche and capers. Both dishes were light and perfect for that warm evening. Great flair here.

Calves Liver with fondant potatoes, pickled cabbage, shallots and beetroot was my guest’s choice of main course. The poor guy doesn’t get liver at home so he enjoys this flavourful meat whenever it’s on a restaurant menu. He pronounced this to be tender, rich and there was plenty of it – all well up to his raised epicurean expectations.

Roasted Lamb with sweetbreads, onion soubise (a classic onion sauce) and spring veg was my main course. The lamb was perfectly cooked and presented with those nuggets of sweetbreads – a cut of the animal which is, so sadly, often overlooked. They are mild and melting, and complemented the lamb very well. Do try these when you find them on menus. Good to see a bit of nose-to-tail eating here, although plenty of options for those who are not so keen to try. The restaurant isn’t after making any moral statement but it does make full use of local produce and introduces diners to dishes they might not have had the chance to try before.

Hotel TerraVina Dining Raspberry and mint parfait was our dessert. This was a beautiful plate of pink sweetness with a counterpoint of minty freshness. Congratulations to the pastry chef on his/her seasonal showcase. It reflected the evident ethos of Hotel TerraVina – quality in every regard. The wine list is outstanding, the food is a triumph and the beds should be No.1 in The Good Mattress Guide (I am joking, dear reader, that book won’t hit bookshops till I write it!). This hotel will tick every box for any discerning guest and there can be no finer accolade than that.

Hotel TerraVina

174 Woodlands Road
Woodlands
Netley Marsh
New Forest
Hampshire
SO40 7GL

Phone: +44 (0)2380 293 784

Fax: +44 (0)23 80 293 627

Visit Hotel TerraVina here.

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