Table talk: Where Jamie Murray Wells eats ...

The Vine Tree, in the little hamlet of Norton, is a fantastic restaurant that I use frequently for business lunches. I always go there when I'm entertaining suppliers who've come down, or for important meetings with shareholders. We had our Christmas party there last year, too.

by
Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

It's just off the M4 and really convenient when you're going from Bristol to London. You nip off the motorway and after a mile you're in another world. It's in an old house, with roses growing and a very large garden.

It has a real homely feel, with a roaring fire and overweight black Labrador and is run by a couple who do their utmost to make it comfortable, while retaining a chic and high-end air. It actually won the Good Pub Guide's best pub restaurant award this year.

They do really good food. The roast has all the usual bits but uses local beef - you can see the cows grazing in the fields outside. They also do mussels, scallops and foie gras, and have snacks like cockles that you don't normally find. There's a really good selection of local beers, including Bath ales, and a couple of decent ciders. They also happen to do the best Bloody Mary I've ever had. It takes them about 20 minutes to make one.

I heard about it through word-of-mouth. You soon hear about very good places when you're outside London. It's very reasonably priced, so won't break the bank if yours is a small company like ours. It's open all afternoon, so I'd suggest you keep an eye on your watch. Many times, I've gone there for lunch and found myself ordering supper too, having stayed all day.

One final thing: don't feed the clementines to the overweight Labrador.

The owner won't be happy if you do.

THE VINE TREE INN
Norton, near Malmesbury, Wiltshire SN16 0JP, 01666 837654
Average price for three courses £25
FAVOURITE DISHES
Roast beef £10.95
Mussels with fresh-baked bread £11.90
Bloody Mary £4.25

Jamie Murray Wells, ex-Shell LiveWire winner, is MD of Glassesdirect.co.uk.

Find this article useful?

Get more great articles like this in your inbox every lunchtime

Subscribe

Get your essential reading delivered. Subscribe to Management Today