Most people have a 'favourite' restaurant. Just pause for a second and think about your own particular favourite. What makes it special? The food? The ambience? Of course, restaurants are a very personal experience and one person's ideal night out can be someone else's horror story. We all have different tastes, and those tastes will often vary according to mood and occasion. There are literally hundreds of restaurants in Dorset, so you should be able to find the perfect venue to suit. Here are a few ideas to help you on the way.
Let's do lunch. Lunch for many of us is often just a hastily grabbed sandwich. It is an interruption in the working day rather than an event in itself. When on holiday, or even just taking a long weekend, it's good to have a more relaxed attitude to lunch. We might find the continental model of several courses over a 2-hour period followed by a siesta, a little over the top (but then, if you're on holiday, why not?). Maybe something between the two extremes would be more acceptable. Many of the restaurants in Dorset provide a special lunchtime menu consisting of one or two courses at competitive prices. Feeding a family is expensive, but you can often find special deals where kids can eat for free, or at very reduced rates.
Another option to consider is the 'Pub Lunch'. Pub food has come a long way in recent years with an increasing number of establishments now offering a wide choice of dishes. Most places are now 'family friendly' and can offer separate dining areas away from the bars. If the weather is clement, a pub garden makes a great setting. As for the food, most tastes are catered for. How about a nice steak, or gammon, or a 100% beef burger with fries. Fish and chips are always popular, especially in the seaside towns. You will find that more and more pubs are choosing to use locally sourced produce, so the fish and seafood will often have been caught locally that very morning. And don't forget the traditional Ploughman's Lunch - a good chunk of local cheese, a Dorset apple and some fresh bread. Perfect.
It is in the evening however, that the restaurants in Dorset will be at their busiest. The sheer choice of restaurant types can be overwhelming. There are those that you would expect to find - traditional English, French, Italian, Indian, Thai and Chinese. And also some you might not have considered â€“ American diners, Spanish tapas, Mexican, Japanese, Caribbean and Indonesian. You will not have any difficulty finding your favourite style, and there's plenty of opportunity to experiment with something different.
For a family, there are many options. Younger members will probably prefer something lively, so an American style burger restaurant with music and interesting dÃ©cor would be a good choice. Alternatively, Italian is always popular, particularly with children if there is a good selection of pizzas on offer. 'Fish and chips' is a great seaside favourite and there are specialist fish restaurants to be found in all the towns along the coast. A seaside holiday is not complete without sampling this great British tradition at least once!
A 'fine dining' experience should combine the very best food, immaculately prepared, beautiful surroundings and impeccable service. If this sounds like what you are looking for, Dorset has plenty to offer. From delightful country house hotels to speciality gourmet restaurants, many of these kitchens feature chefs trained at the best culinary schools in the world. Blending the best locally sourced ingredients with international culinary flair, results in a truly unforgettable dining encounter.
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