Tudor Farmhouse, Clearwell, Forest of Dean: hotel and restaurant review
We head to the beautiful Forest of Dean for 24 hours at chic rural retreat, Tudor Farmhouse, a historic boutique hotel which effortlessly mixes laid-back luxury with seasonal, people-pleasing food that’s sourced within a 20-mile radius
Tudor Farmhouse in a nutshell
A historic boutique hotel which effortlessly mixes laid-back luxury with seasonal, people-pleasing food that’s sourced within a 20-mile radius.
Found in the postcard-pretty village of Clearwell, Tudor Farmhouse’s gently weathered brick façade, clad in climbing creepers, had us sold before we’d even crunched our way across the drive. With 20 farmhouse-luxe-style rooms, the hotel is made up of a handful of buildings – some of which date back to the 16th century – set around a leafy courtyard garden and surrounded by 14 acres of meadow.
Which room should I book at Tudor Farmhouse?
The beauty of a restaurant with rooms is that you only have to wend your way up two original Tudor staircases to roll into bed. The Roost – at the top of the oldest part of the farmhouse and pecking order – is one of three spacious suites which features everything from a roll-top bath to monsoon shower and beautiful old beams in the seating area.
There are thoughtful touches such as artisan china cups, homemade biscuits and Cotteswold Dairy milk to go with your Nespresso. And with a ‘your stay, your way’ policy, there’ll be no raised eyebrows should you wish to eat cheese, dessert or breakfast in your supremely comfy bed.
The food and drink
Seasonal, foraged ingredients are at the heart of the menu, which chef Joseph Williams looks after. Choose between a la carte or a seven-course tasting menu – on the former you can feast on the likes of twice-baked double Gloucester souffle with beer pickled onions, pork belly with pickled pear or potato gnocchi pepped up with braised black cabbage, while the latter highlights star dishes from the main menu with a few exclusive dishes added.
We chose to explore the breakfast buffet with its six types of Ragmans Lane Farm apple juice and array of pastries, fruit and yoghurt and settled on softly scrambled local eggs and Severn & Wye smoked salmon on buttered crumpets in the conservatory. It’s not hard to relax at the family-run Tudor Farmhouse, the only downside is that you won’t want to leave.
What else can foodies do?
When in the area, don’t miss the nearby Parva Farm Vineyard (parvafarm.com), where the rolling Welsh hills could be mistaken for Tuscany on a sunny day. Make sure you walk to the top to make the most of the views across the valley before stopping in at the shop for a tasting of its spicy Welsh mead and award-winning wines.
Is it family friendly?
Children under six can stay for free, while suites are spacious enough for a family of four with a double bed and sofa-bed.
If you’re after a mid-afternoon snack, tuck into hearty sarnies (roast beef and horseradish, Wye Valley Honey glazed ham and wholegrain mustard mayonnaise or maybe single Gloucester and homemade chutney) or go more refined with finger sandwiches, warm scones and homemade cakes at afternoon tea.
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Words by Kate Authers