Forget about calorie counting this season, what you need is a comforting meal that will help lift the spirits during the colder months. Begin your culinary adventure with a quick and easy train journey and you’ll reach your destination relaxed and ready to relish your food.
As soon as you clap eyes on Maggie Jones’s, you know that it’s an establishment that’s going to serve you something a little different, but nothing prepares you for the warmth, charm and romance you experience when you sit down to eat. The restaurant is farmhouse-themed with wooden furniture, baskets, dried flowers and candles. They serve good old British classics, such as sirloin steak or stuffed roast chicken, rump of lamb, fish pie and steak and kidney pie. It’s expensive but worth it.
Take GWR train to Paddington Station, and then a short bus ride
The Barley Mow has everything you’d want from a cosy pub, including wooden floors, open fires, candlelit tables and board games. The menu offers belly-rubbing Sunday Roast feasts, with incredible veggie options, such as a sweet potato and stilton crumble with all the trimmings. Big chunky burgers and sandwiches are also available throughout the week.
Take GWR train to Bristol Temple Meads
Warming food is not just the preserve of the carnivore. Vegetarians and vegans have plenty of dishes in their culinary arsenal that can raise the temperature on a cold winter’s day. Take Cardiff’s foremost vegetarian restaurant Milgi, for instance. There you can chomp down on deliciously hefty meals, including a beetroot burger, tortilla stack and a festive whole food bowl, not to mention their vegan take on the Christmas dinner.
Take GWR train to Cardiff Queen Street
The menu at this young establishment has an entire section dedicated to comfort food, which includes tacos, Thai curry, fried chicken and fish and chips. It is the place to go if you’re looking for relaxed but good quality dining that will make you feel warm inside. Make sure you leave room for pudding as there’s cheesecake, brownie and an irresistible banana tarte tatin on offer.
Take GWR train to Oxford
Stepping inside the Churchill Arms as a first-timer is an experience in itself. This is the old curiosity shop of boozers, with tankards and vintage memorabilia festooning the walls. We especially love the pub’s Thai restaurant, hidden among a jungle of plants. You’ll find all the Thai classics, including pad thai, pad siew and kaeng panang, all made and fresh to order. But be warned: their Thai green curry is hot, hot, hot!
Take GWR train to: Paddington Station, and then a short bus ride