It may well be the king of all roast dinners, but the prospect of slaving over a hot stove and stuffing a turkey on Christmas morning certainly isn’t be to everybody’s liking in the build-up to the festive period.
While it’s well known to be a chance to get the whole family together around the dining table, there’s no shame in considering the option of dining out this Christmas Day – not everyone has the luxury of a week or a fortnight off.
So, if you’re working over most of the Christmas holidays, and don’t want to spend your one day off hard at work in the kitchen – both cooking and, even more of an ordeal, cleaning up – why not treat your loved one to Christmas dinner out this year?
There are no shortage of pubs and restaurants in Somerset ready to welcome you in on Christmas Day, but you better start thinking about booking it up now. If you’re looking for ideas, why not consider these…
1. The Crown at Wells is offering a full Christmas dining experience for £69.50 per person. There’s a choice of four starters – wild boar terrine, sliced salmon gravadlax, slow roasted winter vegetable risotto or confit of duck leg – followed by roast butternut squash and sweet potato soup or lemon and champagne sorbet.
For the main course, if you fancy a change from traditional roast turkey with all the trimmings, there are three other options. A chargrilled 10oz Somerset sirloin steak, a pan-fried fillet of British cod wrapped in smoked pancetta or wild mushroom ravioli are your other choices.
As well as traditional Christmas pudding, the dessert options include a rich dark chocolate and cherry mousse, rhubarb crème brulee or a selection of Cornish ice cream. To complete the meal, there will be a selection of local cheeses with biscuits, chutney and grapes, and coffee with Belgian chocolates.
The Crown at Wells, Market Place, Wells, Somerset, BA5 2RP. Telephone: 01749 673457.
2. The George Hotel at Frome has a full three-course Christmas dinner available for £49.95 per person, or £24.95 for under-12s. Starter dishes include smoked salmon mousse, duck and green peppercorn terrine or cream of spicy parsnip and apple soup.
Moving on to the main course, roast breast of British turkey is backed up by alternative choices of roast British beef, monkfish with streaky bacon and salmon brochette, or goat’s cheese wellington.
To finish you off, the dessert options are Christmas pudding, old English fruit suet pudding or rich Belgian chocolate torte. This will be followed by a selection of farmhouse cheeses with chutney and crackers, coffee and mints.
The George Hotel, Market Place, Frome, Somerset, BA11 1AF. Telephone: 01373 462584.
3. Haselbury Mill will be serving up a five-course Christmas lunch in the Great Tithe Barn from midday onwards, costing £62.50 for adults and £30 for under-10s.
You’re not just limited to Christmas Day at the Mill either. There are a range of other festive meals to try, including the Christmas party nights on December 2, 3, 8, 9, 10, 15, 16, 17 and 23. After being given a glass of warm mulled cider punch on arrival, you’ll be treated to a four-course festive meal, Christmas crackers and a DJ playing Christmas classics. All for only £28.95 per person… what more could you ask for to get you in the festive mood?
Haselbury Mill, Haselbury Plucknett, Crewkerne, Somerset TA18 7NY. Telephone: 01460 77095.
4. The Ilchester Arms has a four-course Christmas menu on offer for diners, costing £49.95 per adult and £25 per child. Your meal will begin with a choice of four starters – hearty winter vegetable broth, home smoked chicken breast, parma ham or king prawn cocktail – followed by a second-course choice of either golden chicken consommé or raspberry sorbet.
Traditional roast turkey and chestnut stuffing leads the main course options, along with beef fillet topped with wild mushroom and tarragon casserole, baked fillet of brill, roast breast of creedy carver duck, or vegetable wellington.
Make sure you leave room for a choice of four desserts – old English Christmas pudding, pear and Amaretto cheesecake, lime tart or rich chocolate mequise – along with a selection of local cheeses and biscuits, coffee and mince pies.
Ilchester Arms, The Square, Ilchester, Yeovil BA22 8LN. Telephone: 01935 840220.
5. Holbrook House's three-course Christmas Day luncheon costs £75 per person, and starts with crispy confit duck leg, organic salmon and smoked salmon tian or woodland mushroom tart.
For the main course, you can choose between roast Somerset turkey, pan-fried seabass or Somerset goats cheese and red onion parcels. To finish, the dessert options are Christmas pudding, mango and coconut iced parfait or a selection of Somerset cheeses and biscuits. Tea, coffee and mince pies will also be served.
Holbrook House, Wincanton, Somerset BA9 8BS. Telephone: 01963 824466.