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A world away in half an hour

Emma Logan discovered a delightful venue for a local getaway at The New Inn, Coln St. Aldwyns, near Cirencester.

Cheltenham is particularly spoilt to have a number of great, local places to just get away from town for the night, without having to worry about being stuck in traffic or getting to the airport on time.

The New Inn at Coln St. Aldwyns is no more than half an hour from Cheltenham and 10 minutes from Cirencester or Northleach. It is nestled in the heart of one of England’s prettiest villages which was recently ranked 7th most desirable village in the country by Country Life Magazine.

Within this beautiful Inn, parts of which date back to the 16th century, the hotel has recently undergone a major renovation which offers a cheerful and welcoming bar, an award-winning restaurant, a sunny terrace or meadow-side garden to enjoy in the summer sunshine and bedrooms full of individual character - furnished and fitted out to a high standard.

On arrival the man and I immediately started relaxing and enjoyed a bottle of fizz in our room whilst enjoying the peace around us. We had a large room full of period beams with a good sized bed and a quirky bathroom in a downstairs turret style room. All rooms have flat screen
TVs, fluffy bathrobes and each has a view of either the village, terrace or meadow.

The New Inn offers varied seasonal dining options throughout the year, including game during the shooting season. The award winning restaurant has recently introduced an 8 course Tasting Menu and one can be assured that you will be eating a gourmet delight. We started with a Gambian tiger prawn bisque which was quite delicious and this was followed by a Wiltshire ham hock terrine served with beetroot pickle and apple puree.

The next course was a red mullet fillet in chorizo oil continued a very refreshing Hendrick’s gin and tonic sorbet and we still had room for a good portion of Gloucester Old Spot belly. The pudding was fiercely good - dark chocolate fondant with a black pepper ice-cream; the flavours just oozed together fabulously. By now I really was full but the man and I weren’t giving up and we just had to have some of the excellent Godminster Cheddar they offer followed by coffee and space dust truffles. Yes, it was like being 5 again when they popped in the mouth!

We subsequently crashed into bed for a good night’s sleep and woke up still full from the night before. Being complete foodies though, we were not going to turn down the breakfast which is seriously good. The man had eggs benedict and I went for a cut of local ham with yet more of the fabulous Godminster Organic Cheddar – my favourite cheese by far.

There are some incredibly picturesque walks from The New Inn, especially towards Bibury which run alongside miles of river. The New Inn does a superb Sunday lunch, the ‘best Sunday Roast’ according to my two children on a previous visit and my dog was certainly made to feel welcome too.

This is a special place to go when you don’t want to be too far from home and know you are going to have a lovely night away.

The New Inn, Coln St Aldwyns, Cirencester, Gloucestershire, GL7 5AN.
Tel: 01285 750651; Email: info@thenewinnatcoln.co.uk;
www.new-inn.co.uk