As part of our visit to Mells, we stopped for a family lunch at the Talbot Inn, a 15th Century coaching inn at the heart of the village. Here we found an old-fashioned English country pub, with a warm, hospitable welcome, excellent ales and a surprisingly diverse menu.
We chose to sit outside in the courtyard, enjoying the unusually warm sunshine and this proved to be the perfect spot to partake of an excellent lunch. I chose a personal favourite: scallops, served in their shells with coriander and garlic butter – sweet, succulent and perfectly cooked. My husband ordered the Brixham Lemon Sole, beautifully fresh and very well prepared. Our children selected the Hand Carved Local Ham with Free Range Eggs and Fries. The portions were huge, making us all grateful that the children had agreed to the recommended child-size servings. Unobtrusive, but efficient, service allowed us to enjoy the perfect, peaceful break in an otherwise busy day.
Over coffee, it was easy to reflect upon the archetypal Englishness of this venue which is perfectly matched to its surroundings and the history of the village in which it sits. The atmosphere, attention to detail, service and excellent food all marked this as a superb country dining experience.