La Fosse Hotel
London House, 8-9 The Square, Cranborne, Wimborne
Driving the narrow, winding roads towards Cranborne, the sat nav loses its signal. Luckily the charming village is so small that it’s easy to spot La Fosse.
The peaceful Victorian B&B, just a 20-minute drive from the Dorset coast, is run by husband-and-wife team Mark and Emmanuelle Hartstone. Their six light and airy rooms, named after local cheeses, all feature Cowshed products in the compact bathrooms.
Don’t expect designer furniture but do expect a local, seasonal, standout menu in a restaurant with just six tables. A starter of perfectly spiced Wiltshire chorizo with poached egg and medlar purée made way for a baked mushroom stuffed with greens and spinach gnocchi. The winner, though, is Mark’s cheeseboard, twice voted Dorset’s best. There are 11 bite-sized cheeses, running from mild to stonkingly strong; served with quince paste, dried and fresh fruits and crackers.
Wile away the rest of the evening in the sitting room with a well-sourced bottle of red and a game of Scrabble. Doubles from £75.