Sixty Tearooms and Two Wheels – Buckler’s Hard

So the journey continues, the weather was absolutely gorgeous, so out she came, the beast that is my Indian Roadmaster ready to ride the roads of Hampshire and in to the New Forest.

I cannot remember the last time I went to Buckler’s Hard, it was probably as a child when we used to sleep under canvas in Hollands Wood.. Even my two children have slept under canvas and in a caravan at the same spot.

Sundays road trip was to Buckler’s Hard, a key place in the History of the Royal Navy, ships of Oak were built here and fought in the Battle of Trafalgar on 21 October 1805. Although HMS Victory is the most famous for Trafalgar it was not built here (it was built in Chatham). However, it is understood that Nelsons favourite Warships was HMS Agamemnon. HMS Euryalus was also built here it was she who took the news of Nelsons Death back to London.

So first stop, The Captains Cabin Tearoom, the menu was OK, but i would say it was a typical tourist tearoom. So we opted for the Admirals Tea and the Captains Tea. One being savoury and the other being a cream tea. The aim as always to have one of each scone…

The savoury tea had two medium to small sized scones, a lump of cheddar and some pickle. The Cream Tea same size sweet scones, a small pot of jam, small pot of clotted cream. The both offered up butter to go with the scones, but I must say they were a bit frugal with the jam and clotted cream 😦 . A pot of tea for two was also served, enough for about two and a bit cups each. The overall price was reasonable at under £10.

From there we proceeded to the museum (£7.50 each) to gain entry to the small but reasonably packed out museum telling the story of Henry Adams (master ship builder) of Buckler’s hard. (The image below is just the shop part, it goes quite a way to the left)

From there we walked down to the river (Beaulieu River) and watched the world go by in their expensive gin palaces and / or sailing yachts. There is also a pub in the grounds and the menu looked good; this is one to go back to.

Overall for a couple of hours of history and a good ride out and back, well worth the visit.

A note for any vehicle, the Forest is limited to 40 mph for good reason, Horses, Donkeys and Cattle roam free and this time of the year is calf and foal session. There is plenty around and they own the roads, so be careful. If you are riding, beware, cow pat on the engine really cooks well and boy does it stink…..

If you have never been, look it up, even just for the drive, the forest is great for wildlife and the views.

Safe riding people 😉

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Anniversary – Food and Theatre

What do you do on your 28th Wedding Anniversary? How about going for dinner and then on to the theatre to see a show. Thats exactly what we did on the 8th August. Earlier in the week we managed to get tickets for Mack and Mabel at the Chichester Festival Theatre.  But we didn’t get a table to eat, so we thought we would chance it as we would be eating early. No such luck initially,  we tried the “Ship Hotel” and “No1” of which are both close to the theatre.  Anyway as we came back towards the city centre, we passed Guildhall Street and happened to glance down it.

The Food

Field and ForkA tiny sign was hanging and it said “Field and Fork“. We thought it must be a restaurant and strode towards it. We were in luck, table for two we asked, certainly they said.  This place was amazing, nicely decorated, old style and not to noisy. The staff are very pleasant and accommodating and the food was fantastic.

 

 

We had three courses, two drinks and coffee and it was £75, that was very reasonable for the excellent food we received, this is what we had.

Starters:

Maple glazed slow roasted pork belly, smoked eel, carrot coleslaw, crackling, ginger jus /  Prawn and seafood fishcakes, Yuzu dipping sauce, coriander and sesame salad
Main:

Clay pot cooked, Mauritian style monkfish curry, saffron rice, lime and coconut / Roasted Turbot, with fennel Courgette, potato and Spinach with a Lobster Sauce

Desert:

Salted caramel and chocolate tart, vanilla ice cream and caramel pop-corn (for 2 to share)

 

The Theatre

mmpicThe story was about Mack Sennet who brought us “THE KEYSTONE COPS” and Mabel Normand’s rise to fame in the 1920’s, and unfortunately her untimely death in 1930 following years or drug and alcohol abuse when she become famous and got in with the wrong crowd. The story is a love affair of sorts and sees the trials and tribulations of Mack Sennet’s directing and love for comedy and Mabel’s unquieted love for Mack Sennet and wanting to be more than just a comedy actress. This is a musical, apparently it was slated by the critics, but from our point of view and with Michael Ball playing Mack Sennet and with a fantastic supporting cast and musicians, the whole performance was brilliant.   The Chichester Festival Theatre is laid out so that the audience is seated around the stage, so everyone gets a good view. Although the scenery was sparse, what scenery they did utilise and with media effects through out, really brought the show to life. If you are able to see it, go, its not your usual type musical with known songs, but something different that tells the story of two people very fond of each other, but wanting different things.

 

Finally

So, people, if you are going to make it a date with a loved one or maybe someone else, why not try dinner and then the theatre, it may be an expensive afternoon / evening, but I am sure that it will be appreciated and thoroughly enjoyed.

Ooooohhh secrets on the Great British Bake Off

I have just finished reading an article in The Mail from Saturday of the one of the contestants in the “Great British Bake Off” apparently the bulider has an undisclosed secret! Wow, would you believe it he comes from an affluent back ground and went to a posh school etc, not just a generic builder… Whoppy do! Can't anyone have a hobby these days, like cooking….

Come on Daily Mail, there's more going on in this country let alone the world, than a bit of gossip about a man who can cook and build a house etc….