Wednesday, December 1, 2021

The number one Pig

A review of The Pig at Brockenhurst

 

When I received an invitation to The Pig at Brockenhurst I seized the opportunity with gusto having read so many rave reviews since it opened last July.

 

The front elevation of The Pig
Another view of The Pig

Situated at the heart of the New Forest National Park and owned by the Lime Wood Group, this 26-bedroom hotel is just 2 hours by car or train from London.

 

I traveled from Waterloo with a group that included The Pig’s delightful PR, Primrose Smith, and two writers and bloggers, Jamie Cotter-Craig and Jassy Davis. Their company was one of the many highlights of the day.

 

Lt Col The Hon Malcolm Bowes-Lyon (1874 – 1957) pictured with his wife The Hon Mrs Winifred Bowes-Lyon and their dog at Brockenhurst Tennis Week in the 1920s

Built as a groom keeper’s lodge and once the home of Lt Col The Hon Malcolm Bowes-Lyon, uncle of Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, The Pig was previously known as the Whitley Ridge Hotel. For some time it was operated by Brigadier John Doyle, a nephew of Sherlock Holmes creator Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

 

The Pig is now part of the Lime Wood Group that also includes Lime Wood, also in the New Forest, and the Le Portetta hotel, lofts and lodges in Courchevel, France. The group, I am told, also plan to open further hotels in the Cotswolds and on the coast. Headed by Robin Hutson, best known for having created the hugely successful Hotel du Vin group and for his collaboration in the Soho House Group, Lime Wood have conducted a comprehensive refurbishment of this 17th century building and mixed classic and contemporary styles in a most effective manner.

 

Designed by Judy Hutson, who previously styled the first seven Hotel du Vin properties, The Peat Spade Inn, The Anchor Inn and The Queen’s Arms, the look at The Pig is “shabby chic.” Touches such as mismatched glassware give the place a really homely and relaxed feel and there is definitely something akin to Babington House about the atmosphere.

 

After a glass of champagne, we were introduced to The Pig’s knowledgeable head chef, James Golding. Passionate about the source of the ingredients he uses, Golding began his career at the age of 16 and trained at The Academy of Culinary Arts. After progressing through positions with The Savoy Group and at Le Caprice, J Sheekey, the Soho House in New York and at Harbour Heights in Sandbanks, he has created a menu that focuses on the “finest and freshest seasonal ingredients that are produced sustainably and locally.”

 

Head chef James Golding pictured in The Pig’s kitchen garden with Gin and Crumpets blogger Jassy Davis

Golding took our group on a tour of The Pig’s grounds and imparted knowledge of the fruits, vegetables and other ingredients he uses to create a “25 mile menu” that changes daily to reflect what is available. This menu is one that is entirely governed by what is currently growing here and in season.

 

Many of Golding’s ingredients are foraged by “The Wild Cook” Gary Eveleigh, who is also known for taking passengers out into the Solent on his Puffin Cruises summer ferries, but others are grown in the hotel’s fruit cages, greenhouses and polytunnels.

 

Outside of the kitchen garden, The Pig also has a wild flower meadow but Golding’s clearest love is for the pigs he keeps in their paddocks. His dedication to them is shown in the colourful tattoos that pepper his arms.

 

Local suppliers include the Newhouse Venison & Game company, the Elling Tide Mill, Hutching Bros Seafood & Game and T. Bartlett & Sons. Detailed information on each is usefully displayed on the rear of the menu that we were given as we were led into The Pig’s delightfully airy conservatory restaurant.

 

One of The Pig’s pigs
James Golding’s pig tattoo

At this point our group was joined by Jen Weatherley, the charming marketing manager of The Pig, for a jovial lunch that was truly phenomenal. The room was, as I had read in both Lucas Hollweg’s piece for the Sunday Times’s Style magazine and Zoe Williams’s review for The Telegraph, buzzing and packed with happy diners and I especially liked the informality of it.

 

The Pig’s Marston & Langinger designed conservatory restaurant

To begin we shared a selection of “piggy bits” (all at £3.50) that included saddleback crackling that was succulent and flavoursome.  The Hampshire red wine salami with Dorset olives, the Bartlett’s air dried “Karma” ham and most especially the Brock eggs with Colman’s were equally enjoyable.

 

Next, I opted for the duck egg and Bartlett’s black pudding hash with home reared crispy bacon and H.P. jus (£7 starter/£14 main). It was rightly the envy of the table and, for me, the best dish of the day. My stomach rumbles at the thought of returning for a second helping.

 

My main course had to be The Pig’s slow roasted pork belly that comes served with a roasted squash salad and apple sauce (£17). A signature of the restaurant, the meat was tender and the sides (all at £3.50) of sweet honeyed baby parsnips and the flower pot of triple cooked chips were delicious. The crispy tobacco onions, however, were undoubtedly the biggest hit with the whole table.

 

A sorbet with space dust was a welcome interlude and for the final course, I chose the selection of local artisan cheeses (£8.50). Served with homemade chutney, grapes and biscuits, the portion was generous and I found it most satisfactory.

 

An outdoor fireplace in the courtyard

Before leaving we were handed a book on pig husbandry. Inside it, cleverly, is The Pig’s cocktail list and it only seemed right to head to the bar to toast Golding and his team. My Negroni, made with Chase Gin, was perfectly made and just to my liking.

 

In summary, The Pig is an unpretentious place that is passionately run. My experience was faultless. Culinary delights like this are hard to find and as a result it’s joined the top draw of country destinations that, as the Telegraph piece laboured to mention, is even “busy on a Monday.”

 

The bar at The Pig

Go the whole hog and head to The Pig. The only problem you’ll find here is that it’s so deservedly popular that there probably won’t be room at the inn.

 

The Pig, Beaulieu Road, Brockenhurst, Hampshire, SO42 7QL. Telephone: +44 (0) 1590 622354. Website: http://www.thepighotel.co.uk

 

Room rates start at a very reasonable £125 per night.

 

Follow The Pig on Twitter at: http://www.twitter.com/The_Pig_Hotel

 

For more information on forager Gary Eveleigh, go to: http://www.garryeveleigh.com. Learn more about his Puffin Cruises at: http://www.puffincruiseslymington.com

 

Read Jassy Davis’s Gin and Crumpets blog at: http://ginandcrumpets.com. Follow Jassy on Twitter at: http://www.twitter.com/ginandcrumpets

 

Read Jamie Cotter-Craig’s JCC’s Food & Drink Blog at: http://jccrestaurantreviews.blogspot.co.uk. Follow Jamie on Twitter at: http://www.twitter.com/JCotterCraig

The Steeple Times
We research and background check our articles. If you believe we have made and error in some detail please get in touch, we seek always to write the truth and stand against a press owned by a self selected few. Please help us, we will accept all your likes, subscriptions and anonymous suport. The Editor and his team at the Steeple Times.
Advertisement
  1. I shall certainly spend a weekend at this hotel when I get chance. Your review reflects the others I have read very nicely. No critics seem to dislike it so it must be good.

  2. Thank you for this review Matthew. I took your advice and stayed at The Pig. You were quite right. It is one of the best places I’ve visited in years. Where can you suggest I try next?

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Advertisement

£1 per week Supports The Steeple Times

Help journalism to remain honest & independent. You can make a difference to the world today.

2,781FansLike
2,068FollowersFollow
11,764FollowersFollow

Subscribe For DAILY NEWS

Please subscribe, like and share this unique site, it helps us tremendously. The Steeple Times in return will send you an email at noon each and everyday, that we sincerely hope you will enjoy & look forward to seeing in your inbox.

AD
Advertisement

Recent and Popular

Clowning Around Boris Johnson Sir Keir Starmer

Bosie – Stop Clowning Around

Matthew Steeples suggests Boris Johnson needs to stop clowning around and tell the truth about his strategy to fight COVID-19 and Omicron this winter.
Poisonous apple Ghislaine Maxwell

Ghislaine Maxwell – A Genuinely Poisonous Apple

References to Adam and Eve from Ghislaine Maxwell’s defence team ignore the fact she is a genuinely poisonous apple; references to Jeffrey Epstein being like James Bond are equally ludicrous suggests Matthew Steeples.
Lowbrow Lindsay Lohan

Lowbrow Lindsay Lohan Reaches A New Low

When you thought lowbrow loser Lindsay Lohan couldn’t go any lower, the ‘celebutard’ predictably delivers.
Day of Destiny Scott Borgerson Ghislaine Maxwell Jeffrey Epstein Prince Andrew

Ghislaine Maxwell’s Day Of Destiny

As Ghislaine Maxwell faces her day of destiny at the ‘trial of the century,’ her brother ridiculously claims their pension robbing father’s “reputation was trashed beyond belief” and announces of his sister: “This time, let’s bring this ship home.”
Karl Lagerfeld Rolls-Royce

Rolling With Karl Lagerfeld

Three Rolls-Royces that belonged to the late designer Karl Lagerfeld to be auctioned by Sotheby’s; the eccentric never drove them himself.
Amanda Platell with paedophile Rolf Harris

Moron of the Moment – Amanda Platell

Paedophile and sex offender apologist Amanda Platell’s claims that the BBC “conned” her into an interview about the royals are beyond laughable.
Haider Malik

Hero of the Hour – Haider Malik

Unemployed graduate Haider Malik’s decision to seek work by standing with a pop-up-stall outside Canary Wharf tube station paid off with a top job offer.
Stella Creasy Wally of the Week

Wally of the Week – Stella Creasy MP

Labour loudmouth Stella Creasy MP proves herself to be nothing but a petulant pain in the arse in moaning about not being able to breastfeed her brat in the House of Commons.

Over a Million Views

Omid Scobie Meghan Markle Duchess of Sussex Finding Freedom

Who REALLY is Omid Scobie?

An examination of the true character traits of the Duchess of Sussex’s PR peddling biased ‘bestie’ Omid Scobie by Nikolay Kalinin.
Justice for James Scurlock – Power of social media proven after the senseless murder of James Scurlock in Omaha, Nebraska allegedly by a bar owner Jake Gardner who has been photographed with Donald Trump.

Justice for James Scurlock

Power of social media proven after senseless killing of James Scurlock in Omaha, Nebraska allegedly by a controversial bar owner named Jake Gardner who has been photographed with Donald Trump.
Moron of the Moment – Prince Harry – With his marriage to the former Meghan Markle, Prince Harry has morphed into an utter bore.

Moron of the Moment – Prince Harry

With his marriage to the woman formerly known as Meghan Markle, Prince Harry has morphed into an utter bore   Prince Harry used to be a fun loving sort. He boozed, partied and enjoyed playing pranks. Now, having married ‘Murky Mucky Mendacious Meg,’ it seems those days are over.   Supposedly, according to...
Omid Scobie Sadie Quinlan Yankee Wally

Scobie Orf!

‘MeGain’s’ bestie Omid Scobie deservedly gets slammed by ‘Yankee Wally’ Sadie Quinlan for getting her shut down on Twitter; this childish chap should now just ‘belt up, wrap up and shut up.’
A Massive Media Maelstrom – McCann, Mandelson and Maxwell – Matthew Steeples highlights how the ‘Mandelson Media Method’ is very much in play in both the case of the Prince Andrew-Jeffrey Epstein connection and the renewed interest in the Madeleine McCann disappearance.

A Massive Media Maelstrom – McCann, Mandelson and Maxwell

Matthew Steeples highlights how the ‘Mandelson Media Method’ is very much in play in both the case of the Prince Andrew-Jeffrey Epstein connection and the renewed interest in the Madeleine McCann disappearance.
Richard Madeley Diana Princess of Wales

Moron of the Moment 2021 – Richard Madeley

As the new Diana, Princess of Wales statue is mocked as looking like him, ‘Dorian Gray of Daytime Telly’ Richard Madeley pathetically claims he got PTSD due to worrying about his son’s wedding.

Weather

London
broken clouds
9.4 ° C
10.6 °
8.4 °
71 %
8.2kmh
75 %
Wed
9 °
Thu
4 °
Fri
7 °
Sat
7 °
Sun
7 °