The drive towards Fairyhill is nothing short of magical. Winding country roads lead us to vistas of open Gower plains and then darkened tunnels of narrow road, lined with trees. Fairyhill is a stunning setting for a restaurant. Surrounded by acres of green land and trees, you feel transported to another more peaceful universe, away from the stresses of everyday life.
We were greeted with a warm welcome as we took our seats in the patio garden, looking out onto an impressive garden which beckoned us to take a stroll. After nibbling on a few deep fried Penclawdd cockles, we put put down our drinks and wandered around the lush green setting, taking in the small stream and nearby woodland.
We were then shown to a window table and started off our meal with home made breads of wholegrain with a soft crumb, and laver bread. Both were absolutely delicious, with a sweet nutty flavour and I could have quite easily eaten a whole loaf. The wine selection was sizeable with oodles of world class fine wines leaving us spoilt for choice - we finally opted for a deep and strong organically grown Spanish red.
Our starters arrived and I enjoyed a garden salad of beetroot, which was woody and sweet and came accompanied by cream cheese and chives, with a tangy and fresh vinaigrette. With many of the vegetables on the menu sourced directly from the hotel garden, my partner decided to opt for fresh pea soup.
My main came in the shape of a seared loin of salt marsh lamb with a herby rosemary sausage, mash and cawl jus. The jus was deep red on the plate, encircling the lamb enticingly and the meat was moreishly soft and moist. My partner enjoyed a succulent fillet of Welsh black beef, perfectly cooked, soft and juicy, with roast vine baby tomatoes, braised pak choi and chunky chips. The pak choi complemented the beef beautifully with the intense flavour of the tomatoes managing to clamour for attention alongside the beef. Most of the ingredients were sourced direct from Gower less than 10 miles from the hotel - something which always makes your plateful taste better.
For desert I was served a heavenly rose wine jelly with strawberries from the garden and a smooth, fruity strawberry ice-cream. It was a fantastically presented pudding and a light summer desert for cleansing the palate. My partner opted for the Afogato sherry, espresso and praline glace. It came with two shot glass sized jugs of sherry and espresso which were poured over the glace and created a delicious, crunchy topping when frozen and made for a fun not to mention tasty dessert. Local ingredients are very much the winning factor when it comes to Fairyhill’s restaurant, and the kitchen knows exactly what to do with them.
(Two courses are available at £35.00, with three courses priced at £45.00). For more information on Fairyhill, visit: http://www.fairyhill.net/home.cfm
Fairyhill Hotel and Restaurant: Reynoldston, Gower, Swansea, SA3 1BS. Tel: 01792 390139.
Reviewer: Kate Corney