A Sense of Place at Iford Manor

The sun shone and tales of reversing into passing places on the narrow lanes leading to Iford were exchanged on the patio over canapes and a glass of Bluestone Classic Cuvee from Wiltshire. Those who enjoyed the private tour of the gardens waxed eloquent on their beauty. Our party then moved inside to enjoy a menu built of estate and locally sourced components introduced by the chef.

The venison for the starter was shot on the estate and butchered in house. Truffles travelled only a few miles to meld into aioli and the micro herb salad was picked on the doorstep as we arrived. A piccalilli accompaniment was daintily diced and a perfect foil to the pate en croute. Hoddles Creek 2020 Chardonnay from Yarra Valley provided acidity and balance with a bite of ripe lime and tangerine.

Matthew informed us that the scallops from Cornwall in our intermediate course arrived at 2AM so they were as fresh as could be. William Cartwright-Hignett served this with a subtle Iford Manor 2023 Huang Shan Mao Feng tea which was such a complementary pairing to the shellfish and asparagus. The tea was made from a 2015 harvest gathered from ancient trees in the forest of Anhui.

Onto estate lamb with a rich port jus including locally sourced morel mushroom. A substantial plate accompanied by a Slovenian Pinot Noir with an attractive herbaceous hint as well as toasty oak top notes and cherries.

Dessert was a rich chocolate moelleaux tart crowned with charred marshmallow and a tall poppy seed tuille alongside homemade clotted cream ice-cream. The selected Domaine des Forges Coteaux du Layon St Aubin was a refreshing counterfoil. The late picked Chenin balance offered richness and weight from vines with an average age of 40 years.

Tea and Coffee with chocolates subtly flavoured with bay brought our sojourn at Iford to an end. A warm vote of thanks was given to the chef and service applauding Matthews passionate presentation.

Date postedApril 26, 2023

This news item is from the Cotswolds Bailliage, see more Cotswolds News.