Harden's survey result
“We revisited after thirty years – the quality is as high as ever”. Shaun Hill has, for the last ten years, continued the excellence pioneered back-in-the-day by Franco & Ann Taruschio, and this rural pub is to this day “arguably the best restaurant in Wales”. “Consistently delicious seasonal food is perfectly cooked and conceived” and prices are “good value” given the “seamless standard that’s a delight for the taste buds”.
“Since Shaun Hill took over the Walnut Tree, its returned to its glory days under Franco and Ann Taruschio” and this “fabulously located” rural pub – “so very charming in its simplicity and transparency” – “truly earns its plaudits and accolades, with homely but nuanced cooking, served without pretence, but full of panache”.
“The simplicity and precision of the cuisine marks a true understanding of food”, at Shaun Hill’s acclaimed inn (made famous in the ’70s by Franco and Ann Taruschio), whose “honest, imaginative and creative” dishes maintain it as the survey’s most commented-on destination in Wales. Where there are gripes it’s generally over the odd “rustic” dish that has “lacked subtlety”, but according to nearly all reports this modest venue is “always a treat and well worth the journey”.
“We drove 2 1/2 hours each way and it was well worth it!” – Shaun Hill’s modest rural inn (made famous in the ’70s under Franco and Ann Taruschio) has re-established itself under his ownership as one of Wales’s top destinations. It may be “very crowded” and with “challenging acoustics”, but the “perfectly pitched” cooking – “eschewing the ostentatious novelty of many top chefs” – is “tremendously honest, with great sensitivity to tastes and flavours.”
The food is an eclectic mix, based on Shaun Hill’s personal taste, paired with sound cooking techniques; rather than a particular country's cuisine. A unifying feature is the core of excellent ingredients.
Shaun Hill is one of Britain's most enduringly successful chefs. He began his career in 1966, working for Robert Carrier in his Islington restaurant. He went on to work in some of London's most prestigious addresses including The Capital Hotel in Knightsbridge with Brian Turner and Blakes in South Kensington.
He won a Michelin star for Gidleigh Park in Devon where he was a key player in the Modern British food movement of the late 80's that fused local, seasonal produce with global influences.
The Merchant House, his much missed 24 seat Michelin-starred restaurant in Ludlow was hailed as the 14th best in the world and turned the Shropshire market town into a gastronomic destination.
Shaun currently holds a Michelin star at The Walnut Tree where he was a regular customer when it was run by Franco Taruschio. The restaurant fell on hard times after Taruschio sold up in 2001, only recovering when Hill took the reins in 2008.
Along the way, he's forged a unique style with a string of timeless dishes including scallops with lentil and coriander sauce that are as distinctive and delicious now as the day he created them.
If you are looking for accommodation, there are two cottages, both next door to The Walnut Tree just a short walk through the garden. The cottages are called the Old Post Office Cottage and Ivy Cottage.
The Walnut Tree Restaurant Diner Reviews
"We have been here 3 times in the last 18 months. The food is stunning, the sweetbreads the best I had ever tried. Set lunch is an absolute bargain. The atmosphere is relaxed and comfortable. Cocktails ( particularly the champagne cocktail) are lovely and the wine list very well chosen. Saun Hill seems like such a pleasant man, and his cookery book is great."
"We took the set menu incl beautifully pink lamb Crisp muscadet to drink Excellent meal and great value at under £100 with coffe and petits fours"
"We returned to The Walnut Tree after quite a long absence. Overall, it did not disappoint. The food was good, as was the atmosphere and service. Will be looking forward to returning again."
"Rather a slow start to the evening when we had to wait 30 mins to order some wine to drink before ordering!! When the starters arrived they were imaginative and excellent. The mains were good without being outstanding as we had expected. I do appreciate a good value wine list."
Llanddewi Skirrid, Llandewi Skirrid, NP7 8AW
|Tuesday||12 pm-2:30 pm, 7 pm-10 pm|
|Wednesday||12 pm-2:30 pm, 7 pm-10 pm|
|Thursday||12 pm-2:30 pm, 7 pm-10 pm|
|Friday||12 pm-2:30 pm, 7 pm-10 pm|
|Saturday||12 pm-2:30 pm, 7 pm-10 pm|