60 High Street, Milford on Sea, Lymington, SO41 0QD
Since its 2011 opening, this intimate little restaurant has proven itself eminently popular among the resident and visiting epicureans of Milford on Sea. Sam Hughes – who previously made an appearance on MasterChef: The Professionals – took over the reins of La Perle in summer 2015, bringing with him a wealth of culinary skills and experience. Having trained in some of the most prestigious restaurants in the UK and with some of the country’s finest chefs – including Raymond Blanc – Sam’s talent is very much in evidence at La Perle. Sam prides himself on incorporating locally sourced Hampshire produce into his menu and, as chef and patron, his imaginative approach to blending ingredients and balancing flavours shines through in La Perle’s delectable à la carte dishes. We began with French onion soup and fricassee of English and white asparagus with girolles, crayfish and wild garlic – a delicious array of flavours, prepared to perfection and presented beautifully. Our mains were equally enticing; cutlet of Keyhaven lamb for myself, and for my partner, blade of Hampshire beef in New Forest beer jus served with smoked mash. Both dishes were truly exquisite and decidedly original. The small, inviting restaurant exudes charm and sophistication, and a convivial atmosphere abounds. Service is attentive, knowledgeable and on-hand to assist the indecisive. For outstanding British cuisine at a reasonable price point, La Perle is an absolute must-visit.