TOTW Gold 2017 300high

Taste of the West Gold award winner 2017

We are so proud to have been awarded Gold in The Taste of the West Awards for another year. Well done to Matt and Rich along with their team in the Kitchen and Tara and her team in the restaurant. The time spent creating new dishes and learning complex menus has paid off.

The Judges made the following comments:

  • The lunch was outstanding. Everything was beautifully cooked and very well presented. All the courses were bursting with delicious flavours and looked extremely attractive.
  • The hotel has a relaxed and elegant ambience with friendly, helpful staff. There is a varied menu with delicious food and the surroundings, both inside and out in the garden, are superb.

After lengthy planning our exciting new refurbishments are nearly complete. Our bar has had a makeover, the reception area has been spruced up and the Drawing Room is now an inviting place to meet, eat or just have a drink and a chat. Come and visit soon. Watch this space for more updates in the next few weeks.

Sherborne festive shopping 2016

Its always a struggle to find different and special Christmas presents but a trip to Sherborne is sure to enable you to delight all the receivers of your gifts! Christmas has started early with the trees going up as I write this blog and some of our shops already decked out with their beautiful Christmas displays. If, like me, you refuse to even think about Christmas until the 1st December (despite our first Christmas party being on the 24th November) then you might like to join us for Sherborne Festive Shopping Day on the 4th December 2016 between 10am – 4pm!

The main shopping area of Cheap Street and Digby Road are closed to traffic allowing street performers, choirs, bands, orchestras, carollers and dancers to entertain, with Abbey 104 FM holding centre stage on The Conduit.

The Abbey welcomes visitors to join in its joyful shoppers’carol services, held throughout the afternoon, and to wonder at its magnificent ceiling-high Christmas tree and traditional crib scene. Cheap Street Church stages its ever-popular Christmas Tree Festival too, featuring dozens of twinkling trees, all delightfully and individually decorated.

Dorset Farmers’ Market will be offering delicious local food and drink all day while more pop up shops and stalls than ever seen at this event before will offer gifts galore. Each year, the shops put on their most creative Christmas displays throughout the town and the coffee shops and restaurants are full to bursting with delicious festive treats.

Santa will be taking up residence in his Grotto outside the Post Office, and every little visitor he sees will receive a gift from him (in return for a small entry fee of £2).

Visitors can also stretch their legs with a gentle stroll around historic Sherborne, learning more about its ancient past with Blue Badge Guide Cindy Chant. The walk starts at 2pm outside the Tourist Information Centre in Digby Road and costs just £5. There is no need to book – just turn up!

As always, the highlight of the event will be a festive and fun parade along Cheap Street, which everyone is invited to join, culminating in the illumination of the Conduit Christmas tree. The day ends just in time for visitors to join Sherborne Abbey’s annual family-friendly Christingle service at 5pm, which is always a wonderful occasion.

Follow this with a delicious supper sampling our new a la carte menu or tasting menu here at the Eastbury. Too tired to go home why not stay the night on one of our festive Stay & Dine December offers.

Call 01935-813131 or e-mail relax@theeastburyhotel.co.uk


The rain the night before almost put paid to my planned walk but I was keen to revisit this lovely walk whilst the ground underfoot wasn’t completely saturated. With Tom home for the weekend we decided we would set out to take our new border terrier, Otto , out and so drove off to Sturmintser Newton to the start of this 5 mile walk.

Very sadly our faithful and always cheerful Charlie found life with arthritis in his back legs too much to bear. He had found it increasingly difficult to walk and our nightly ritual up Cheap Street, right at Waitrose and back home was reduced to a stiff stroll around the Conduit and a possible visit into the Cross Keys. When even that became too much for him it was clear that the pain was too great to bear. Much of Charlie’s character and Harry's loyalty feature in Otto’s make up, he is a very playful and in fact he can’t get enough of other dogs.

It was a perfect day still warm enough to walk without a coat (I wish I’d known that before I started) and with the rain clouds keeping their distance. The helpful orange markers guided us along the meadow land west from Sturmintser Newton to the very beautiful Fiddleford Manor and eventually onto the Fiddleford Inn which is looking splendid with its refurbishment and busy; it might have something to do with serving Sunday roast from 12-8pm. The views all along the valley are stunning and for a significant amount of time we were walking to the burble of the Stour River.

Fortunately crossing the A357 proved easy and soon we were high on the hill walking through Piddle Wood and back to Sturmintser Newton via Broad Oak and Newton Mill. A lovely 2 hour walk, just perfect before eating our own Sunday roast.

I found some great walking ideas on a couple of websites I came across; one is called John Harris’ walking in ……. England which has a few walks you can download detailed and also www.mapmywalk.com which shows walks undertaken by other people and can be quite inspiring. In both instances I found I needed to get my OS map out to plot my route- there’s nothing I like better than the security of a piece of paper in my hand!

Life at the Eastbury & Three Wishes continues to be busy although I am rarely at The Three Wishes these days. Lyn and her team have got it very much under control and a visit from me can prove to be more disruptive than helpful, or so she tells me! October is award season and I have had the pleasure of attending 2 awards ceremonies. The first at Lulworth Castle, hosted by Dorset magazine’s Helen Stiles and her team, was a splendid affair with exceptional food. We had the very great pleasure and honour of receiving the Best Hotel Restaurant Award. This was followed just a week later by the evening at the impressive Bovington Tank museum which catered for an incredible 250 people as we were seated amongst their collection of tanks. Again we were victorious against an impressive list of finalist wining best restaurant/ bistro in Dorset.

To find out what everyone’s raving about book a table on line www.theeastburyhotel.co.uk or call 01935-813131. A lovely way to experience our delicious food is to join us for Jazz Lunch on the 6th November £25 for 2 courses and a glass of wine or 3 courses or on one of the two Lunch and Learn days we are holding on the 17th November and 9th December. See online for details.

Hotel Restaurant 300 x 300dta gold 2016 300x300
What an amazing 2 weeks it has been. First there was this………
TOTWAwards Finalist 2016
And then there was this………
Hotel Restaurant 300 x 300
And to top it off………….

dta gold 2016 300x300


Just adding to the marvellous collection……….

Paul and I are delighted for and proud of our team and what they have achieved. Its really not just about the exceptional food and service we delivered on the day the independent judges came but the fact that we are delivering exceptional service  & food day in day out. We have been a finalist in the Dorset Tourism awards since their inception in 2013 so that’s 4 years of being consistently excellent and 9 years as a Taste of the West Gold Award winner. That’s 9 years of supporting and serving west country food, arguably  the finest in the country. Not tried us yet?  come along and see what everyone’s talking about. Book on line or call 01935813131.

Drone flyover of The Eastbury

View The Eastbury from the air in this Drone's eye view of The Hotel.

Garden path

Click on the picture to be transferred to our You Tube Channel

Best 3 walks to pubs from The Eastbury Hotel

Short walks from the Eastbury are easy to come by which means you can have a car free weekend when staying in Sherborne. With train travel from London just 2 hours and Exeter just one hour we are the perfect short break destination in Dorset.

Not only does Sherborne have fantastic independent shops (more about them in a future blog), an Abbey, and 2 castles but we have easy access to wonderful short country walks from our front door. I hope to tempt you by listing my top three. In order to be short listed they have to be not too long 5-10 miles and involve a great pub at some point- as I need some reward at the half way point!

From the hotel we head off in 2 directions- north and south. One walk takes you from our front door past Pete Hunts dairy farm and his Toy Barn to the village of Oborne and then up to and along the ridge to Corton Denham and the Queens Arms Pub www.thequeensarms.com.My wider family insist on visting this pub during their annual Christmas visit just to  have warm pork pies or homemade scotch eggs served at the bar (having parked in Oborne if we are feeling a bit lazy).

Family on Corton Denham ridge

Alternatively we walk along the tracks just up from the old Sherborne Hotel to head out to The Rose and Crown in Trent  www.theroseandcrowntrent.co.uk  (Likely to be a little more muddy so best for a frosty day).

Lastly a walk I did just last weekend, we head south up past the towns sports facilities (tennis, football, rugby and cricket) and on to Longburton and the other Rose and Crown www.roseandcrownlongburton.com

Nicky walking

All beautiful and varied walks with a great pint, of cider, served at all of the wonderful pubs. If we get too comfortable in front of roaring log fires we have been known to catch a taxi back so long as the dogs can come too!

dorset tourism awards 2015 silver

After a nail biting wait we went to The Dorset Tourism Awards dinner at The Tank Museum in Bovington to find out what we had won in The Restaurant and Small Hotel categories. After a great meal we awaited the anouncements of the winners, first up was The Small Hotel category where we won silver, we then had to wait for the next to last category to be awarded silver in The Restaurant category as well.

Nicky and I were delighted that amongst such stiff competition we achieved such high recognition.

tourism awards matt Tara

Matt and Tara collecting our silver award in The Restaurant category


We have just found out that we are a double finalist in this year's Dorset Tourism awards. We are a finalist in the small hotel and the restaurant category. We will find out on 15th October at The Tank Museum whether we have won Bronze, Silver or Gold in each category. Last year we won two silvers and in 2013 we won Gold for the Restaurant and Silver in the Small Hotel category, however that was not all, as we were awarded the Winner of Winners trophy as well.

Congratulations to all the team, we now have the wait untill the 15th to find out what we have won.

A new resident has checked in, but he is not staying in a room like everyone else, he has taken up residence in our garden. We have spotted him a few times over the last few days and on one occasion he was heading directly for the bar.

Herbert the hedgehog

GOLD at The Eastbury for a 5th year


Congratulations to all the team for achieving Gold in the prestigious Taste of The West awards 2015.

The Judges made comments as follows:

Regarding commitment, perception & communication of local sourcing "This establishment had all the bases covered. The staff were very knowledgeable about sourcing and carefully explained in detail where every ingredient was from. Quite simply. the service was exemplary."

Regarding quality of the meal "The standard of the food was superb, all beautifully presented and expertly cooked to perfection. There was not a single fault; simply outstanding."

Regarding atmosphere, ambience and value for money "The hotel is an elegant townhouse and has a very pleasant atmosphere with beautifully maintained gardens. All the tables overlooked the beautiful gardens which all added to the ambiance. We felt the menu was excellent value for money especially for the quality of the produce received."


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