Cosy, enticing and comfortingly familiar, there’s nothing like heading to the emerald countryside of England for a winter break that brings the same joy as your mum’s Sunday Roast. When it comes to an English countryside escape with a twist, it's hard to beat the glorious town of Bruton in the South West county of Somerset. Endless fields, boundless skies and crisp fresh air isn’t all you’ll find here. With an artistic atmosphere booming in the region thanks to the Hauser & Wirth gallery, here you will be able to follow a morning country lane walk with a visit to a world-renowned art gallery before browsing through scandi-inspired boutiques and enjoying a gastronomic farm-to-table dinner prepared by some of the country’s most promising young chefs.
With the words ‘Everything is Going to Be Alright’ installed in neon tubes on the grey stone of an 18th century Grade II listed farm building (the work of artist Martin Creed), it’s very evident from first glance that this guest house is something very unique. A six bedroom farmhouse sharing land with the famous Hauser & Wirth gallery, the Durslade Farmhouse was respectfully but playfully renovated by Argentinian architect Luis Laplace who has combined the building’s original character with unexpected interior twists, vintage furniture and contemporary pieces by the gallery’s artists. A real trophy of the property, the dining room is particularly breathtaking with a spectacular mural painted by Guillermo Kuitca plunging diners into an alternate reality as they enjoy their meals.
Combining life’s pleasures of gastronomy and art, the Roth Bar & Grill located on Durslade farm offers a dynamic and vibrant dining space to enjoy wholesome seasonal plates lovingly prepared by a team of chefs, local farmers, gamekeepers and gardeners. Located in a converted cowshed with walls adorned with a mishmash of artworks depicting food, animals and countryside scenes, the restaurant oozes the charm, character and quirk that is quickly becoming synonymous with the town of Bruton. While dining here, be sure to have a drink at the bar. A masterpiece in itself the restaurant’s bar was created by Björn and Oddur Roth from scavenged materials and is a tribute to Björn’s late father, artist Dieter Roth.
At The Chapel: A unique restaurant housed in a Grade II Listed 17th-century former chapel, serving only local produce and a relaxed approach to hearty British cuisine.
Matt’s Kitchen: Boasting a friendly and intimate atmosphere and a daily-changing menu of exquisite gastronomical plates cooked to perfection.
Pythouse Kitchen Garden: A delightful restaurant located in a walled 18th century garden which specialises in outdoor open-fire cooking.
The spark that arguably ignited the nation’s newfound love for the town of Bruton, the Hauser & Wirth gallery at Durslade farm is an attraction not to be missed while staying in Somerset. Bringing contemporary art into an environment where it is so rarely found, the countryside, Iwan and Manuela Wirth embarked on a brave and ambitious project of opening the gallery which has paid off in the most exciting ways. Against a backdrop of a traditional English farm, the contemporary art pieces on display here take on new meaning and significance, surprising audiences with the striking contradictions or seamless connections. Walk through the four main galleries housed in the old barns before wandering outside where numerous pieces such as Anri Sala’s ‘Clocked Perspective’ and Paul Mccarthy’s ‘Shop of Fools, Ship Adrift’ will surprise and delight you.
West Combe Dairy: A small artisan dairy specialising in traditional cheddar and West Country cheeses.
King Alfred’s Tower: A 49 metre folly believed to mark the site where King Alfred the Great rallied his in 878. Climb to the top for wondrous views of the countryside.
Messums: A multi-purpose gallery and arts centre focusing on the significance of the handmade across diverse art disciplines and forms.