The 2022 Exmoor Food Fest has officially ended

Last Saturday, The Farmers Arms in Combe Florey hosted the grand finale of this year’s Exmoor Food Fest: Six chefs prepared six courses which were served with a great wine flight.

Head chef Ben Routley and his team were joined by Chris Chatfield (Complete Events) and Chris Gillard (Dart Fresh). Miguel Tenreiro from the Porlock Weir Hotel prepared the last course, but wasn’t able to attend due to Covid.

Guests were greeted with a drink on arrival sponsored by Exmoor Distillery – the choice was a range of gins, rum or vodka over ice.

And here is the menu:

Asian Infused Pork Belly Canapé
By the team of the Farmers Arms

Beech-Ridge Duck Breast
Confit Leg, Yeast Crumb, Roscoff Onion, Beetroot & Game Jus
By Chris Chatfield

Fillet of Fresh Trout
Crispy Pork Skin, Sautéed King Oyster Mushroom, Textures of Cauliflower & Herb Oil
By Chris Gillard

Josper Seared Early Spring Lamb
Potato & Celeriac Gratin, Kalettes & Red Current Jus
By the team of the Farmers Arms

Braised Octopus Tentacle Ballotine
Lobster Mac & Cheese, Exmoor Caviar & Red Pepper Coulis
By Miguel Tenreiro

Glazed White Chocolate Mousse
Honey Comb, Chocolate Soil & Winter Berries Compote
By the team of the Farmers Arms

A huge THANKYOU to our fabulous hosts, the chefs and their teams, and of course all the amazing guests without whom the evening would not have happened.

All photos by Gareth Davies Media

Michelin Stars announced today

Two Exmoor restaurants have been named in today’s announcement by Michelin Guide to have retained their stars.

Congratulations are in order to Mark Dodson and his team, amongst them Olivier Certain, at the Masons Arms in Knowstone who held their star yet again – 17 years, and not out!

(Photo by Andy Francis)

MICHELIN Guide’s Point Of View

Husband and wife Mark and Sarah Dodson run this pretty thatched pub in a secluded little village. It was built in the 13C by the masons who constructed the nearby church and exudes plenty of rural charm. Have a drink in the cosy beamed bar or lounge then dine beneath a Grecian ceiling mural in the bright rear dining room, where the views over Exmoor’s rolling hills are fantastic.
The food is more sophisticated than you’d expect to find in a pub, with a concise seasonal menu of attractively presented dishes firmly rooted in British and French classics. Cooking is refined and flavours are pronounced and assured; Mark has plenty of experience and employs the finest local produce to full effect. Service is charming and attentive and a perfect match for the food.

Congratulations are also in order to Thomas Carr who retained his star at 1837 in Ilfracombe.

MICHELIN Guide’s Point Of View

Thomas Carr is a skilful and experienced chef who understands his guests and the area well. Local fish is his forte and he serves it in a multitude of different ways, carefully selecting the accompaniments to enhance rather than dominate the star ingredient of each dish. The well-judged, perfectly balanced menu reflects both the region and the seasons: you might find mackerel, monkfish or bass alongside juicy Creedy Carver duck, with some playful desserts to follow.
The building, in the heart of town, was formerly a police station, and the restaurant’s name is a nod to the year it was constructed. Dark colours and an impressively high ceiling set the tone and the exposed stone walls are hung with seafood prints; there’s also a sweet little anteroom. Endearing service completes the picture.

Tickets are now available for ExFF22 ‘Closing Ceremony’

Well, it's actually more of another outstanding Tasting Dinner - six chefs will be serving up six courses at the Farmers Arms in Combe Florey on Saturday, 26 February.
There are only 50 Tickets available. And they are selling fast.
Menu plus wine flight: £70.00 pp

To book, call the Farmers Arms on 01823 432267 or send an email to or

Meet the Chef: Jade Shorney, The Rising Sun

When did you become a chef and why?

I started my Journey in kitchens when I was 15/16 during School work experience. I was asked what I wanted to do and my Brother said you can come to work with me so I did and have never looked back. I became a chef because it is something I have always been interested in doing. My Nan was a chef and made these beautiful wedding cakes with delicate flowers and my Big Brother is a chef so I guess you could say it’s in my blood. 

Have you always been passionate about cooking?

I have always been in the kitchen Baking with Family/Friends from a very young age. It’s always been something I’ve been interested in from the exact science of baking to creating new dishes and flavour pairings.

What keeps you passionate about cooking?

To be passionate about cooking you have to have a good teacher and respect for the ingredients. I was fortunate enough to have a great teacher. One of my old head chefs in the 2 years we worked together  taught me how to become not just a leader but a chef.

But also you as a chef have to remember every day is a school day because we are constantly learning and the food trends, diets and so on are constantly changing so it keeps you on your toes.  

When did you start at The Rising Sun?

Well… The Sun is under new management so I  have really only worked there since September 1st. I worked at the Sun Pre Covid for almost 3 years. I was Gutted to have to leave. It really is a special little Village. I knew I had to go back and finish what I started so I did. 

Do you have a particular style of cooking?

My style of cooking is very much taking Local and Seasonal Produce and letting the ingredients sing. Try no to fuss around too much with foams , plates full of purees and so on because at times they shy away from the ingredients. We use a lot of varied techniques but we stick to traditional ways of cooking in order to benefit the ingredients we use.

Do you have a favourite dish at The Rising Sun and why?

 I couldn’t pick a Favourite dish as I love coming up with new ideas and dishes. If I was to hold on to one dish I’d get bored and start thinking of ways I can make it even better. 

What one ingredient couldn’t you live without?

Salt – what good would any other ingredients be without Salt to Season them.

Do you have any exciting future plans?

We hope to purchase a second pub in 2022 and I would then become the Head chef of Two kitchens overseeing and building both the brand, cuisine and standards.

Are you looking forward to Exmoor Food Fest?

I Have been involved in the Exmoor Food Festival for a few years now and it’s great to be back but for some of the Team it is new to them and we are excited to be entering this year.

Something we are hugely proud of at The Rising Sun is Our All Female Kitchen Team , with only 17% of UK chefs being Female. 

I Couldn’t be more proud of my Team. They are Amazing and such hard working, we get along like Family.  

Download the ExFF22 menu here

West Bagborough
Somerset, TA4 3EF

Phone Number: 01823 432 575
Email Address:

Meet the Chefs: Arek & Dainis from the White House, Williton

  • When did you become a chef and why?

Arek-  I have been involved in cooking since early childhood, helping my mum and dad and learning my first tastes from them. After finishing secondary school I started my professional education at chefs college, rest is history 😊

Dainis- I became a chef 19 years ago as a new challenge for myself.

  • Have you always been passionate about cooking?

A – To this day I enjoy cooking, creating new dishes and seeing happiness on my customer faces when they taste the food, I think this is what keeps me going and motivates me.

D – Yes

  • What keeps you passionate about cooking?

D –  I love keeping people happy and exceeding expectations with food they eat

  • When did you start at The White House?

A – I’m with the Withe House Hotel for over a year now, enjoying every minute . I have joined my friends here and we are are all passionate about great food and customer service, it’s great when we inspire and motivate each other.

D – We took over the business as a B&B in 2019. We renovated the restaurant and opened to the public in November 2019. 

  • Do you have a particular style of cooking?

A – I wouldn’t say that I have a particular cooking style, I love food from around the world and trying new things

  • Do you have a favourite dish at The White House and why?

Both – We don’t have a favourite dish. We change the menu often and we create each dish with passion and care. It would be like choosing a favourite child.

  • What one ingredient couldn’t you live without?

Arek – Butter

Dainis – Meat

  • Do you have any exciting future plans?

Both – Yes, to extend our restaurant, open the garden to public and do BBQ weekends

  • Are you looking forward to the Exmoor Food Fest?

Both – Yes very much so. It’s always great to hear feedback about your dishes, we are constantly trying to improve the customer experience. Also, it’s great to see what trends and ideas are presented by the competition.

  • Is there anything else you would like to add?

We look forward to seeing you at The White House!

The White House
11 Long Street 
Tel.: 01984632306


Meet the Chef: Ben Routley, Farmers Arms

When did you become a chef & Why?

In 2011 I Entered my first kitchen as the quiet little pot wash trying to earn a little bit of pocket money. A couple weeks later I realised what I thought was going to be just a weekend job changed a thought in my head and I realised this fast paced, crazy & fascinating industry was definitely for me! Soon ditched the dishes and headed for the main kitchen.

Have you always been passionate about cooking?

I’ve always had a flair with food from digging half my parents garden up to make a vegetable patch to going out beating & using the freshly shot duck, pheasant & partridges to cook meals at home. Ive always enjoyed experimenting and putting ingredients together that shouldn’t work together but do!

What keeps you passionate about cooking?

It’s got to be hearing and seeing customers enjoy what’s produced for them. 

The “wow” you hear through the kitchen door as the dishes arrive at the table.

But also the amazing availability of our produce raised so close to us from long horned beef to freshly caught lobsters.

When did you start at the Farmers Arms at Combe Florey?

February 2020! Not the best time to try & turn a restaurant completely around with the Covid just kicking off and us soon getting locked down. But we pushed through staying open for takeaways. Which soon got the customers flooding into our outdoor thatched area wanting to try our new menu & freshly made pizzas.

Do you have a particular style of cooking?

Less is more. I don’t really have a style. I enjoy creating dishes from locally shot game to Asian Ramen noodles & everything in between. Everything comes with a little twist of course !

Do you have a favourite dish at the farmers and why?

I do have a couple of personal favourites I like to suggest to people. On the starters it’s got to be the hand picked Brixham crab & brown shrimp served with a runny truffle confit egg yolk & homemade focaccia. On the Mains its got to be the Josper seared backstrap of venison, hand-made sweet potato gnocchi, charred fennel & rich Port jus!

What one ingredient couldn’t you live without?

The obvious answer would be salt & pepper as that can lift & change a dish instantly but would be garlic for me I think. 

Do you have any exciting future plans?

We are hosting an event to celebrate the closing of the Exmoor Food Fest.

We have a few things up our sleeve for this year but its hush hush at the moment. 

Definitely the spring as I’m a huge spring lamb fan. 

Are you looking forward to the Exmoor Food Fest?

100% it’s a great way to prise people out of their homes & to keep supporting businesses throughout the cold winter months 

Is there is anything else you would like to add?

As mentioned we will be hosting the closing event to celebrate this great month of Fantastic pub / restaurants.

If you wish to see more of our food & the pub you can follow me personally on instagram @VW_CHEF96 or the pub itself @farmersarmscombeflorey

Introducing the Mangetout Supper Club

Introducing Mangetout Supper Club,  a new exclusive dining club from award-winning La Petite Bouchée. This is a new project for Chef/Patron Anita-Clare Field. 

“This new project gives us an opportunity to showcase our more creative side, without diluting our La Petite Bouchée brand,” explains Anita-Clare.

La Petite Bouchée, known for its big bold flavours and French Bistro-Style menus, will stay true to its roots and continue to serve an array of classic dishes. 

“Mangetout allows us to create tasting menus from around the globe to a niche audience, all with one thing in common. A passion for food and its provenance, We want to be small enough to be able to work with small holders and artisan producers for each event. We also have our incredible network of suppliers which we’ll continue to use alongside La Petite Bouchée.”

“That’s not the only thing. Mangetout will be nomadic. There will be a different venue for each event. We’ve got some places in mind but we are open to ideas. The first venue announced last week is North Lake Chapel, East Worlington.”

“We’re absolutely delighted to be working with North Lake Chapel for our first event. A stones throw from La Petite Bouchée. The Chapel, near East Worlington is a beautifully converted building, dating from 1860, situated in the heart of Devon with views of both moors. This wonderful venue allows us welcome our guests with a glass of fizz and some canapés before joining us upstairs for our five course tasting menu which is a final hurrah to this years Exmoor Food Festival and a celebration of seasonal Exmoor produce including local venison and beef.” 

You can find the full menu below  and bookings are now open. To book simply email us here at 

Quote “Exmoor Food Fest” to enjoy a 15% discount for the launch event.

The Exmoor White Horse Inn in Exford is open for bookings

The award-winning Exmoor White Horse Inn sits at the very heart of Exmoor National Park in the delightful village of Exford. Its 16th century origins are reflected in its chic country interiors.

Relax before dinner in oak beamed bars in front of a wonderful log fire. A warm welcome, creative menus & one of the most extensive whisky collections in the south west of England with over 250 malt whisky for your pleasure.

The best locally produced Exmoor Ales, Local craft gins & a comprehensive selection of wines.

Our creative team of chefs produce seasonal menus showcasing the best Exmoor Produce with a contemporary twist. 

‘Truly the heart of Exmoor’  Open all year round for Lunch, Dinner and Afternoon Tea

Exmoor Food Fest offer: 2 courses for £20.00, available lunchtime and evenings (excl Sun lunchtime)

Exmoor National Park
TA24 7PY

Tel:  01643831229



The 2022 Exmoor Food Fest has officially started

Wednesday night, the 2022 Exmoor Food Fest was officially launched at the Pyne Arms in East Down. Chef Ellis Pannell was joined in the kitchen by Olivier Certain (Masons Arms Knowstone), Paul Berry (The Swan, Bampton) and Donna Berry (Spelt, Bampton). Liam and Matt from the Old Bank in Lynton contributed the canapés.

Only two nights earlier, the three Exmoor pubs had made it into the Top25 Gastropubs of the UK – so there was even more reason to celebrate. The Swan had moved to up to Rank 25, the Michelin-starred Masons Arms came in at Rank 22, and the host of the launch, the Pyne Arms, had made it to Rank 17.

The launch night was an all-round success. People loved the food and the wine paring, the atmosphere was great, and the chefs’ efforts were applauded and appreciated.

Here are some examples of the feedback left by happy guests on social media:

Posted @withregram • 
Contagious, beautiful passion.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Last night I attended an event locally to me. It was the launch of the @exmoorfoodfest hosted by @pynearms – the food, wine, atmosphere and company were all absolutely amazing, but there was one thing that stood out to me above all those things…⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
That thing was the passion! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
The passion of the chefs that took part in the event, and the way everybody in the room celebrated their passion. It was just amazing. 🥰⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Each chef came out and explained their dish with the diners, what they were making, why, and a little backstory about them, and everyone in the room paid complete attention as they spoke, then clapped with genuine admiration and appreciation at the end of each one. ⠀
When someone is talking about their thing, their passion, their love, there is something so captivating and inspiring about it, and I couldn’t help but notice the link between that experience and the way we connect so much more with businesses whose passion and enthusiasm pours just like this. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
We can spend ages overthinking and trying to cleverly craft our message and marketing, but there is no more effective way to connect with your audience than to just speak with a genuine, raw passion for what you do. It doesn’t need to be glamourous or polished, it just needs to be real. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Thank you to all the chefs last night that made the evening so memorable, and for sharing your passion with us! 🤍⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

Here are some photos James Archibald took on the night:

Thank you to hosts Ellis and Amie Pannell, the chefs, the front of house staff, the suppliers and sponsors (shout-out to Wicked Wolf Gin!), and all the lovely people who came and enjoyed the night.

The Kings Arms in Georgeham is open for bookings

Known for its dramatic cliffs, wild seas and sandy beaches at Woolacombe, Saunton Sands and Croyde Bay, North Devon is where Exmoor meets the Sea. Only a short drive from these stunningly beautiful beaches you will find the picture postcard village of Georgeham, which is home to the Kings Arms. A traditional village family-run pub bursting with character; exposed beams, a roaring log burner and comfy sofas, which combine to create a warm and welcoming space to while away the hours. Proudly working alongside the finest suppliers the West Country has to offer, our menu reflects the changing seasons to offer a menu of modern British classics with a contemporary twist. We hope you can join us this February!

Exmoor Food Fest Offer:

£20.00 for 2 Courses /£25.00 for 3 Courses

Available Wednesday – Saturday 12:30-2.30pm/ 6pm–9pm 

throughout February 2022

Not Available Sundays & Saturday evening


Smoked Haddock, Potato & Chive Velouté, Soft Poached Hen’s Egg (f, d, e)

Cumin Roasted Carrot Arancini, Carrot Hummus, Carrot & Coriander Slaw, Coriander Oil (Vegan)

Orange, Chilli & Ginger Glazed Pork Bites, Shaved Fennel & Spring Onion Salad, Toasted Sesame Seeds (s)


Pan Seared Fillet of Bream, Fragrant Rice, Poached King Prawns, Thai Green Curry Sauce, Toasted Peanuts (Cr, f, P)

Spinach, Potato & Paneer Samosa, Fried Cauliflower Rice, Coriander & Onion Chutney, Keralan Tomato Sauce (Vegan/GF on Request) (m, d, g)

Duo of Devon Venison, Roasted Haunch & Cottage Pie with a Devon Blue Cheese Mash, Parsnip Puree, Savoy Cabbage, Port Jus (d, Su)


White Chocolate & Vanilla Panna cotta, Morello Cherry Compote, Biscotti

Mulled Cider, Apple & Plum Spiced Nut Crumble, Vanilla Ice Cream or Crème Anglaise (Vegan on Request) (N, du, e,)

Sticky Toffee Pudding, Butterscotch Sauce, Toffee Crunch Ice Cream (d, e)

To Book call 01271 890 240 Quoting ‘Exmoor Food Festival’ or Book Online

The Kings Arms
Chapel Street
Braunton, EX33 1JJ