Situated near Forest Row in East Sussex, the beautiful Ashdown Park estate is a spectacular setting for a special evening meal. Originally built circa 1815, the mansion house is home to Ashdown Park Hotel and The Anderida Restaurant – a dining establishment that exhibits the height of luxury. Large windows, elegant drapes and a baby grand piano all contribute to the grandeur of the dining space. The waiting staff are conscientious, friendly and attentive, with all the grace and charm you would expect in a venue of this calibre.
The drinks menu is varied and extensive, with particular emphasis on wine and a good selection of cocktails. We were seated in front of the glorious fireplace, and offered an appetiser of cured beef with mint sauce, followed by a refreshing palate-cleansing lemon sorbet. To start, I plumped for juicy hand-dived scallops with parsnip purée, parsnip crisps and pomegranate dressing, while my companion revelled in smoked partridge breast, with swede and caramel purée, pistachio crumb and pickled purple carrots. I followed with sumptuous fillet of venison enhanced by beetroot and blackberries, while my partner enjoyed a simply exquisite fillet of beef with truffled potato and cauliflower purée. To finish, we sampled dark chocolate torte accompanied by banana and honeycomb, and millionaire’s shortbread, made with rich dark chocolate and salted caramel.