Foodie Days Out
Sussex is awash with wonderful places to eat – and wonderful produce too. But if your time is limited, and you have just one day to experience it all, what’s the best way to go about it? We’ve planned two incredible food-filled days for you to experience where you’ll certainly get a taste of everything (you might even want to go back for seconds!).
by Lisamarie Lamb
The Award-Winning Day
When you want something truly exceptional, follow the awards; and in Sussex, they just keep coming!
Breakfast at Bill’s
The breakfast at Bill’s has won awards for its freshness and its tastiness, and what better combination can you have to start the day than that? Rustic in style, the building is barnlike with an open kitchen with a warm and friendly atmosphere; this is the perfect way to start your trip around Sussex. Food includes the traditional English breakfast; vegan options; porridge with bananas, hazelnuts, and honey; and eggs royale.
Bill’s, 100 North Road, Brighton
Mid-Morning Snack at Turner’s Pies
Turner’s Pies won an award for having the best steak pie in the Guild of Fine Foods’ Great Taste Awards in 2013/2014 for their spectacular Steak & Ale and Steak & Stilton pies. Perfectly cooked and all made by hand, these pies will keep you going until lunch! For comfort and great food, this family-run baker’s, which has been cooking up tasty treats since 1933, is the ideal spot for your mid-morning snack.
Turner’s Pies, 87-89 Hawthorn Road, Bognor Regis
Lunch at Jeremy’s
Jeremy’s has won numerous awards, including Best Eating Experience in the 2013/2014 Sussex Food and Drink Awards. If you love local, you’ll love Jeremy’s where as much produce as possible is sourced in the surrounding area, and that includes the herbs and edible flowers used to create spectacular looking (and tasting) food. The exciting lunch menu includes curried mint soup with an onion bhaji; south coast gurnard, spinach, cannellini beans, and salsa verde; and lime and coconut panna cotta, poppy seed, and pineapple carpaccio.
Jeremy’s, Borde Hill, Borde Hill Gardens, Haywards Heath
Afternoon Tea at Ashdown Park Hotel
The high tea at Ashdown Park Hotel has won awards, and rightly so – the homemade cakes, sandwiches, and scones on crisp bone china plates, the fruity jams and decadent clotted creams, as well as the huge choice of teas speak for themselves when it comes to quality and taste. You can enjoy your tea in one of the period lounges or, in good weather, out on the terrace overlooking the lawns and lake. If the mood strikes, hotel staff will pack your high tea into a picnic hamper and you can find your own perfect spot in the grounds. Delicacies such as smoked Scottish salmon sandwiches, freshly baked scones with Devonshire clotted cream and strawberry preserve, and Ridgeview Bloomsbury sparkling wine are all included. Ashdown Park Hotel & Country Club, Wych Cross, Nr Forest Row
Dinner at South Lodge Hotel
This is another level of chef’s table! There are 26 covers in this exquisite restaurant (Michelin starred and with four AA rosettes), and each one is close up to the kitchen action, with guests able to watch talented chef Matt Gillan creating the perfect dish right before their eyes. Food here includes seasonal specialities and a wonderful ‘surprise menu’; no need to choose your food, your award-winning chef will do it for you, and you’ll love the result.
The Pass, South Lodge Hotel, Brighton Road, Horsham
Dessert with Chocolate Ecstasy Tours
If you have any room left at all, why not book onto a chocolate tasting tour around Brighton? This walking tour includes hot chocolate bars, truffles, gelato, macarons, and visits to award-winning chocolatiers. Superb!
Chocolate Ecstasy Tours, Brighton
The Homemade Day
There’s nothing like homemade food, prepared fresh, just for you, with locally sourced and delicious ingredients. Sussex has plenty of this to offer; homemade is Sussex’s speciality.
Breakfast at Silo
There’s homemade, and then there’s really homemade. At Silo, everything is produced on site, and that includes the bread and pastries, the butter, and the chocolate. There is plenty of wild, foraged food on the menu, and they even cure their own meat. Everything used in the restaurant is brought in in its whole form, and then processed right there. With a brewery in the basement and the ability to use waste water from the coffee machines to flush the toilets, this is a fascinating place. The food is great too, and includes Silo yoghurt with freshly rolled oats, poached quince and frozen plum juice, and sourdough toast with Silo baked beans and slow cooked egg.
Silo Brighton, Upper Gardener Street, Brighton
Mid-Morning Snack at Flint Owl Bakery
The café in this great little bakery is, of course, filled with the most scrumptious and appetising homemade products around. From excellent sourdough to chocolate cherry cake, croissants, and brownies, as well as coffees, teas, and soft drinks, this is just the place to have a rest, kick back, and enjoy some real homemade treats.
Flint Owl Bakery, 209 High Street, Lewes
Lunch at The Old Greenhouse
The Old Greenhouse is a beautiful restaurant in a stunning B&B in a pretty little village. But it’s more than that; this restaurant only opens to pre-booked tables, and is an intimate affair, with room for just 16 lucky guests at a time. The menus are designed just for you in advance, and it’s more like having a private chef than dining in a restaurant. The food is all prepared freshly, and the products are locally sourced wherever possible. This is a very different, yet unforgettable way to enjoy a great lunch in the most comfortable of surroundings, and all for a set price that may just surprise you.
The Old Greenhouse, 82 Fishbourne Road West, Fishbourne
Afternoon Tea at Fletcher’s House
Once the home of Jacobean playwright John Fletcher, this attractive, historic building is now a wonderful tea room and restaurant in the very heart of Rye. In the winter the large log fire will be burning, and in the summer the terraced garden is the ideal place for a relaxing afternoon tea. Speaking of afternoon tea, the ones served at Fletcher’s are sublime, and feature home cooked sweet and savoury scones, and a huge variety of delicious cakes. Gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian… no dietary requirement is a problem to the fabulous bakers here, who will ensure you are served only with the freshest, most mouth watering treats around.
Fletcher’s Tea Rooms, 2 Lion Street, Rye
Dinner at The Sussex Ox
The Sussex Ox is a pub with its own organic farm, and that’s where the majority of the meat, vegetables, and fruit that are served on its gorgeous menu come from. The pub itself also serves some fine local ales, and has the most breathtaking views over the Sussex countryside. As for the food, everything is cooked to order, and is as fresh as fresh can be. Dishes include gin-cured smoked salmon, The Ox beef burger, and wild mushroom and truffle risotto.
The Sussex Ox, Milton Street, East Sussex
Dessert – Choccywoccydoodah
Backtrack just a bit, and after you’ve had your fill of breakfast at Silo in Brighton, head over to Choccywoccydoodah to pick up some dessert for later. From huge milk chocolate fruity marshmallow lollies to gorgeous single-tier cakes (that look too beautiful to eat) – all handmade by their expert bakers and chocolate artists – you’re sure to find a sweet treat for you.
Choccywoccydoodah, 3 Meeting House Lane, Brighton