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Checking In: Number One Bruton, Somerset

Country chic, with a touch of bohemia, Number One Bruton is an elegant Georgian townhouse, medieval forge, and row of cottages renovated as a twelve-bedroom hotel.

Plotted at the estuary to Bruton’s high street, Number One Bruton is the perfect launch pad from which to explore the artistic delights of this charming Somerset town.

The Vibe

Boho-chic, with a sophisticated finished.

The Rooms

We stayed in the forge – the most recently updated portion of the property – which is located at the rear of the hotel. Exposed beams, honeyed walls, and unexpected design touches make for an eye-catching walk to your bedroom. Our room, room number F2, was wholly comfortable. Boasting a sinkable, velvet-clad armchair as well as a window nook for bookworms to gleeful curl up in, it’s easy to while away the hours here. An Aztec rug, and striped drapes further cosify your quarters. The bathroom (where you’ll find the shower and toilet but not the bath – that chap is in the boudoir) is tastefully finished in pearl-toned square tiles and brass finishings. Each room has its own personality and quirks, with prices starting from £130.

The Little Extras 

In your room you’ll find complimentary tea and coffee services (which can be enjoyed in a lovely rainbow-hued Richard Pomeroy mug), along with a gingham-wrapped selection of cheese and crackers, and a selection of drinks from The Newt – their cider is a must-try.

The Food + Drink

Merlin Labron Johnson’s restaurant, Osip is connected to the hotel – good fortune then for guests! Come for lunch or dinner at the Michelin-starred eatery, taking a seat at one of the duck egg- and mint-striped banquettes, and tuck into a blind tasting menu (dietary restrictions are noted prior to dining). We joined for dinner and kicked off our multi-course supper with a combo of trout and apple roll with meadowsweet and a potato terrine with quail egg (reader: we could genuinely this little wedge of heaven Next, a root vegetable tea with burnt garlic oil and treacle and ale bread with smoked butter is presented – simple and lip-smacking. The next dish to make an appearance was the sea bass tartare with Tokyo turnip, cedro lemon, and a mandarin kosho. The porridge of celeriac with winter truffle and crispy onions followed, echoed by a hearty beetroot tortilla with cured deer heart. At this stage, fullness began to register, but prevailed we did with a scrumptious Jerusalem artichoke plating served with sweet onion jam, hazelnuts, and chickweed. Next, the fallow deer, parsnip, pink radicchio, and fermented blackcurrants, closed out with a turn to the sweet. Aherb ice cream and soft meringue with tarragon oil presented alongisde an Amalfi lemon tart (which was a little difficult to attack) were served for pud. To polishing things off (as you reach a similar status): chocolate with coffee caramel and salt and a brew of your choice. A most memorable meal, presented on Kana London crockery (which adds a naturalistic quality to each dish and impacts the experience very positively indeed), it’s seldom you’ll find such variety and provenance at this price.

After a brief breather (read: sleep), it’s time to dine once more at Osip, where the hotel’s breakfast is also served. A simple affair, breakfast foods are presented along the counter – spanning baked goods, eggs, cheese, bread, rice pudding, granola, compote with yoghurt, juices, and filter coffee or tea. Served from 8-10AM, it’s during the earlier hours of the day that the dining space is at its most enchanting, with beautiful beams of light flooding in to illuminate the tasteful decor of hanging dried flowers and herbs, a waxed apron, and minimalist graphic art works in a palette of ochre, yellow, greige, black, and white. Hanging lights, white textured tiling, and bookshelves dotted with pickling jars, cookbooks, and plates offer much distraction.

The To-Do List

Hauser and Wirth is a short walk from the hotel – ramble through the galleries and garden space, before stopping for a bite to eat at Roth Bar and Grill.

The Old Pharmacy (which is also run by Johnson) sits next door to Number One Bruton and is a great lunch option – as is At the Chapel.

A short drive from your home away from home will bring you to The Newt – the whimsical gardens, impressive greenhouse, and moreish produce are certain to tempt those who need some day trip coaxing.

What to Pack

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