And a partridge in Guinness sauce… Chewton Glen’s alternative Christmas recipe

Chewton Glen alternative Christmas recipeWhile most of the world gobbles down turkey like there’s no tomorrow (or indeed Boxing Day), some prefer not to eat turkey at all – given a choice of festive fowl, I’d never pick turkey. Never. It could sit plumply on the supermarket subs’ bench till kingdom come for all I care, forever in the shadow of gamey alternatives, goose, grouse or partridge in Guinness sauce.

Thankfully, Chewton Glen – a New Forest family-friendly favourite officially dubbed by this very blog as ‘Hampshire’s Most Splendiferous Spa-Enhanced Country-House Hotel‘ – has saved the day with a mouthwatering recipe from its recently revamped restaurant, Vetiver.

Of course, some of you might prefer to spend less time in the kitchen, and more time drinking sherry/unwrapping presents/recovering from Christmas Eve. In which case, the sane way to avoid manual labour completely is to check into Chewton Glen, bed down in one of its classic-luxe suites and let talented head chef Andrew Du Bourg do all the hard work for you…

Roast partridge | Truffle and butternut squash puree | Guinness sauce

Alternative Christmas recipe – partridge – Chewton GlenINGREDIENTS: Serves four
4 partridges
250g duck/goose fat

For the sauce
Olive oil
2 banana shallots
½ head of garlic
1 can of Guinness
1 litre partridge stock
4 sprigs thyme
2 bay leaves
100g butter

Immodesty Blaize talks dirty weekends

Here at Mr & Mrs Smith we love Immodesty Blaize – not just for her looks, but also her travel savvy. While the glamorous burlesque star may not be the most inconspicuous guest, she was the ideal person for us to send incognito to review Il Salviatino in Florence. For more fantastic luxury travel advice, see p102 of the August issue of Country & Town House as Ms Blaize features in my monthly travel column for the glossy magazine. Meanwhile, here’s the uncut version of Immodesty’s globe-trotting fantasies…

Whisper to us your top tips for a sexy escape…
A dirty weekend is no time for budgeting – you’re going to be spending a lot of time in the hotel, not sightseeing, so splash out on the hotel. Go for romance and choose a room with an amazing bathroom or Jacuzzi, or a fabulous view. Even if it’s just a hut in the countryside, make it memorable. Imagine you’re in your own movie and play the part you’ve always dreamed of from start to finish. And, if you can, give yourself plenty of time to plan your weekend bag as travelling light is a strategic art, and you’ll want to feel your best.

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