MO at Dormy House


As you approach this 17th-century manor house on the Farncombe Estate, you may think it seems an unusual spot for a boundary-pushing, contemporary restaurant. Yet the Cotswolds, that John Betjeman-esque corner of England, is exactly the kind of place where muddy walks are followed by the likes of deconstructed canapés in a room decorated with pineapple-print wallpaper. Step forward MO. The fine diner at the excellent Dormy House Hotel, it comprises a marble horseshoe-shaped bar with just 12 seats that can be booked en masse or individually. Eating here is a full evening’s entertainment; one that runs the gamut from incredible to comforting. Menus curated by culinary director Martin Burge, who previously spent 13 years at Whatley Manor, revolve around local ingredients prepared right in front of you with a deft touch, then playfully presented. Think fresh courgette four ways, blushing venison in a nest of smoking hay and excellent local handmade cheese with crackers as brittle and salty as they come. Having the prospect of a four-poster bed and bubble bath – with Temple Spa toiletries, naturally – within stumbling distance is MO’s final, irresistible drawcard.

Words by Blossom Green.

This review was taken from the May 2020 issue of Food and Travel.

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