The Arden, Stratford-upon-Avon
THE ARDEN: STRATFORD-UPON-AVON
WHY YOU MUST VISIT:
- To enjoy the fantastic food
- For the great location in Stratford Upon Avon
- Sit in the courtyard and enjoy a relaxed drink in the sunshine
- To stay in a spacious rooms
During a stay in Stratford-Upon-Avon last month, my Mum and I were really looking forward to checking into The Arden for the night. Situated in an enviable location right opposite The Swan Theatre, The Arden has an attractive townhouse style frontage with a private courtyard with picturesque gardens.
We arrived on a lovely sunny afternoon and checked into our room, which was situated at the back of the hotel. The room was spacious with a king-sized bed, desk and armchairs and a large bathroom with shower, bath and double sinks.
Since it was a sunny day, it would have been rude not to sit in the hotel’s courtyard and enjoy a glass of wine so that’s exactly what we did with a cold, crisp glass of Picpoul de Pinet. There was a relaxed and friendly atmosphere to the space with groups of friends and couples enjoying some of the last of the summer sunshine.
That evening we had dinner booked in the hotel’s restaurant, which is a spacious room decorated in a modern bistro style. We sat down to peruse the menu and had the choice of a limited early evening menu or the full a la carte. We chose the latter and it was a carefully planned menu with a handful of starter, main and dessert choices and it made it easy to decide what we wanted to order.
With another glass of Picpoul de Pinet in hand, I decided on Glazed Scallops with Pea & Mint Soup, Crispy Bacon and a Parmesan Tuille to start and my Mum ordered Smoked Gressingham Duck with Grilled Peaches, Goats Cheese Curd and Toasted Walnuts. For main course, I ordered Spring Lamb Duo of roast Rump of Lamnb, braised Lamb Breast, Aubergine Puree, Olive Oil Mash Potato, Wilted Spinach and Red Wine Jus and my Mum chose roast Guinea Fowl Supreme, wilted Baby Gem, Peas, Broad Beans, Onion and Morel Mushroom with Boulangiere Potato, Smoked Bacon and Madeira Sauce.
The scallops were cooked perfectly and the flavours of pea and mint worked well. The soup was so delicious I was glad I was given an extra serving of it on the side which I finished off with the parmesan tuille! The smoked duck was complimented by the creamy goats cheese and juicy peach and worked well together as a dish.
As with the starters, the main courses arrived wonderfully presented and we couldn’t wait to try them. The lamb was tender, the potatoes smooth and creamy and the sauce finished off the dish. My Mum’s guinea fowl was incredibly tasty and the dauphinoise were cooked and seasoned to perfection.
We were comfortably full after our mains but the desserts were too tempting to refuse so I chose Vanilla Panna Cotta, compressed Strawberries, fresh Strawberry gel and Black Pepper Tuille and my Mum ordered Rhubarb Parfait, Ginger Beer Foam and Spiced Tuille. Both tasted fantastic - the panna cotta had just the right amount of wobble and vanilla and the ginger beer foam was fun and fiery!
We were brought over a glass of dessert wine each by the restaurant manager, which was delicious and ended the meal with a cappuccino each. The service throughout the meal had been attentive and we felt looked after throughout.
After a good night’s sleep, we woke up still full from the night before but of course, you can never miss out on breakfast when you’re staying in a hotel. There is something so luxurious about being cooked for first thing and having no washing up to do!
We were heading onto Warwick that day and before we set off, we picked up a paper bag in reception with fruit, sweets and water in for our journey. A lovely touch and a lasting memory of the great service we received throughout at The Arden.
If you’re visiting Stratford-Upon-Avon then The Arden is a great place to stay for it’s location and it’s fantastic food. And even if you’re not staying the night, the restaurant is a must visit for dinner!
Dotty Dishes was a guest of The Arden.
The Arden Hotel, Waterside, Stratford Upon Avon, Warwickshire, CV37 6BA.