The Five Dials Inn, Horton
Muddy says: Come for the great food, drink, cosy rooms and warm welcome at this family-owned village pub on the slopes of the Blackdown Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, near Ilminster
You’ll be spoilt for choice with a menu (which they describe as trad pub with a contemporary twist) that’s long and inventive. Treacle cured ham sandwich made with homemade bread. Home cured loin of venison with celeriac remoulade. Bath Blue cheese mousse with beetroot sorbet. Sea bass with glass noodles. Otter beer battered cod and triple cooked chips. Prosecco and elderflower jelly. Get the picture? As far as poss, all made using local produce, including fresh fish from Brixham.
Beer, ale and cider, with an emphasis on the West Country including Otter, Doom Bar, Perry’s of Dowlish Wake and Burrow Hill ciders. Twenty-one different kinds of gin (nice). Carefully chosen wine list.
Can’t bear to leave? Sleep over. Six rather lovely en suite rooms, named after local roads. Four doubles, a family room with double and single beds and a larger suite with separate double bedroom and its own kitchen. All tastefully decked out in pale colours, wooden furniture, sofas and lighting with TVs, wifi, tea and coffee etc. The breakfasts are said to be phenomenal.
Lots to do around about – you’re right on the Somerset/Dorset/Devon borders. Walks in the Blackdown Hills, natch. A spot of shopping amongst the many independent shops in nearby Ilminster. A jaunt down to the Jurassic coast – about half an hour away.