The day did not begin well: intent on an early morning walk on the beach to work up an appetite for lunch, I left the house and went to the car, only to be confronted by a huge, freshly-laid dog turd. Making a mental note to instruct father-in-law to clear it up ASAP, I got in the car, turned the key - and nothing. Nada. Niente. The alarm chirrupped, the lights came on and off, but the engine: dead. This is the peril of having a very sophisticated all-singing all-dancing car with a multitude of electronic gizmos and gadgets. It has happened to me once before, and not that long ago, at the Eurotunnel terminal in Calais on my way back from France at Christmas. It was embarrassing to be stranded, not least because I was queueing in the priority boarding lane. A Basil Fawlty-ish scenario ensued, before a French AA man appeared and sorted it all out. Once again, the AA had to be summoned, and it turned out to be a flat battery, caused by one of the interior lights being left on. Simples!
The beach walk was abandoned, owing to lack of time, so I spent the morning reading the paper, something I rarely do. Then, at 12.30, we went off to the pub. Wimborne St Giles is a tiny village in the depths of Dorset countryside. There are fords to be forded the twisting muddy lanes were awash with Rangerovers and hunt followers. The pub was not busy, a few families out for Saturday lunch. We were welcomed by two smiling girls at the bar who were quick to fulfill our drinks order and see us to our table by the window with freshly-printed menus.
For a starter, I selected the Lymington crab which came with a piquant fresh chilli dressing and some pleasantly bitter salad leaves, offset by sweet-sharp pieces of pink grapefruit. The crab was delicious, redolent of the sea from which it had so recently emerged. Other starters were pearl barley, cabbage and ricotta soup (a little too healthy for my liking!) and San Danielle ham with rocket, romesco sauce and a soft-boiled egg. All the food was pronounced "delicious".
|Hanger steak & chips|
|Meringues with coffee mascarpone cream and chocolate sauce|
The Bull Inn