If you asked me what my favorite restaurant is I’d say it’s The Black Rat Restaurant in Winchester. I know you’ve heard it from me before and no I am not a saddo, who never goes anywhere else, there lots of other eateries I can list as very special but somehow perhaps because of the reliably good times I’ve had there, it’s the place that draws me back again and again.
The menu is challenging and clever, not of the nasty surprise variety though, a continuous parade of delights. It’s an education in the gentlest possible way, they are brave with the choice of ingredients and combinations. Foraging’s big, not just gimmicky, am I really still dreaming of almond flower foam, from a trip there in the spring? And they’ve won a Michelin star, such heroes.
Great wine list, so remember, on a visit, wear your walking boots and after widely sampling from it you can trek through town, home. Decor, no contemporary messing with internal traditional pub structure here, wonderful eclectic, end of auction, sturdy, as it should be.
The lead up to Christmas isn’t about the drudgery of organsing and buying, mark the specialness of this time of year and make a weekend celebration visit, lunch even better with their fabulous adventurous poundstretching fixed price menu. Afterwards slot in visits to the excellent Winchester Cathedral Christmas Fair where I have picked up beautiful idiosyncratic gifts and fabulous shopping emporium The Hambledon.