Along the beautiful North Norfolk coast is an unassuming fruit farm alongside a grand hall, farm shop and café, the Wiveton Hall Cafe. Delia Smith recently said it’s the best eaterie in the world, but more importantly my friend Ben Pert is one of the head chefs and my dad has just joined his kitchen team as a sous chef! I took advantage of my Easter weekend with family back in Norfolk and had a wonderful lunch at this uncomplicated, beautiful cafe on Easter Sunday.
The lunch only menu changes daily, depending on what’s available locally and from the farm itself. The bright, chalkboard menu offers lighter lunches, starters and main meals – use the very friendly and knowledgable waiting staff to guide you depending on how hungry you are. Expect big, robust portions, the highest quality produce and lots of flavour. Here are some of our favourite dishes…
Potted smoked salmon, homegrown beetroot salad and spelt toast – rich, creamy and smokey.
Game terrine, made with game shot on the premises, along with pork rillettes (we ordered 3 game terrines but as they didn’t have quite enough for 3 portions they added the rillettes, great service!). I only got a little taste, but the boys loved it!
I went for the Weybourne crab bisque, which came in a huge bowl with crusty spelt bread and butter. It was delicious but was too much for me to manage as a starter, perfect for a light lunch though.
My boyfriend, Jamie, proclaimed that his dish was the best roast lunch he had ever had. Local lamb with roast potatoes and homegrown roots, cauliflower cheese and purple sprouting broccoli. I was allowed one taste, and it was amazing!
Baked local cod served with butter beans, aioli and purple sprouting broccoli was really, really good – I think the picture speaks for itself.
I went for the local lobster salad with herb mayonaise – light, fresh and perfect to eat by the seaside!
Two desserts really stood out – the sticky toffee pudding and the panna cotta with poached rhubarb and shorbread.
I have to give credit to the chefs at this point! With head chefs James Fitzpatrick (left) and Ben Pert (second from right) and my dad/ Geoff Truss, one of the sous chefs (second left), they have a great team – with the kitchen open and visible from the cafe, and a great reputation to live up to, they are under pressure to perform! It sounds like a great place to work, especially with all the amazing homegrown and local produce at their fingertips.
We were considering taking some of their homemade cakes away with us, but remembered our Easter eggs waiting at home for us, so managed to restrain ourselves! They looked great though, and I can’t wait to go back over the summer for afternoon tea and cake! They also do tapas evenings over the Summer, so thats on my must do list too.
The table decorations were gorgeous, resident Emma Bridgewater crockery beautiful and views absolutely stunning.
It was a shame the weather was a bit off, as the seating area outside is perfect for a sunny afternoon.
Once the fruit starts growing you can pick your own, and if you visit the farm shop you can take home preserves made from the farm fruits, buy all sorts of souvenirs, art work, chicken huts and even their own specially designed Emma Bridgewater crockery!
Take a look at their website for more information about the hall, farm, shop and café. Have you been to Wiveton Hall? What do you think of the place? If not, I hope I have inspired you to visit?