Wednesday 15 April 2015


Lunch at The Fritton Arms in Norfolk

After our wonderful visit to Somerleyton Hall and Gardens, we made the short journey to one of two country pubs on the same estate; The Fritton Arms. We had chosen the location for its vicinity to Fritton Lake and the park and it proved to be an excellent choice as we had a terrific lunch and wander along the lake after.

The Fritton Arms may be classed as a pub, it is nothing like a greasy spoon in the city. It is far more upmarket and seasonally orientated, and the diverse menu reflects this. Not only that, but a lot of the food cooked on the premises is from the Somerleyton estate itself, including a large portion of their meat offerings; the epitome of locally sourced. And the quality of their food was instantly obvious as we were given some delicious fresh bread filled to the brim with seeds and nuts while we were pouring over the menu.

While the regular menu already looked incredibly appetising, it was the specials board that really caught our attention and we both ended up ordering our mains from it. I mean, just look at the amazing variety of scrumptious dishes listed below, how could you not order from that? It was tough for us to narrow down our choices to just one each, I can tell you that.

Before our main courses arrived though, my friend ordered a starter as we had worked up an appetite exploring Somerleyton Hall and Gardens. She went for the Asparagus Soup With Poached Egg and I just loved the colour of the dish when it arrived to our table. The beautiful bright green of the asparagus really popped and made the soup look healthy and delicious.

My friend found her starter flavoursome and well-seasoned, though she did point out that the consistency could've been somewhat thicker. Also, while the poached egg looked interesting, it actually didn't add much flavour to the dish as a whole.

For the main she choice the Estate Rabbit; Bacon Wrapped Loin, Haked Confit Leg, Pearl Barley, Rich Tomato Salsa And Wild Garlic. The presentation of this dish was absolutely stunning and you could see there had been a lot of thought and effort put into this. And the fact that the rabbit was from the Somerleyton estate itself made this dish very special indeed.

My friend thought the rabbit was cooked to perfection and the way the dish was put together was delicious. Though it was quite meat-heavy and could've done with some vegetables and/or potatoes to complete the meal.

My main also came from the specials board and was the Pan Roast Guina Fowl Surpreme, Herb Mash, Asparagus, Roasted Carrots and Madeira Jus (I'd requested the black pudding to be left off). Once again the presentation was fantastic; the combination of colours and the ring of rich gravy around the plate made this dish a real stunner and one I instantly wanted to dig into when it arrived to the table.

Flavourwise it was absolutely faultless. I love guinea fowl and I've had a variety of qualities in the past, but I do believe this is the best one I have tasted yet – it was that good. The vegetables were cooked to al dente perfection and the asparagus in particular tasted so fresh, unbelievable. The jus was beautifully flavoursome and so was the herb mash, which truly complimented the guinea fowl without overpowering the bird's gentle flavour. It was an incredible dish and one worth the journey (all the way from London!) on its own.

As I had enjoyed my main so thoroughly I didn't think I'd have space for a dessert, but my friend was tempted by the sound of the Sticky Toffee Pudding With Fudge Sauce And Vanilla Ice Cream. I admit it's not normally my thing, but when the below arrived to our table and she was offered an extra jug of the gooey fudge sauce I did somewhat regret my choice.

Lucky for me my friend didn't actually enjoy her dessert very much as she found the texture of the pudding more bready rather than spongy (she did love the sauce and ice cream though), so I ended up devouring most of the final course. I'm not even sorry, the fudge sauce in particular was scrumptious and I pretty much ate it straight from the jug (and when I said 'pretty much' I mean that I actually did).

With a rustic, homely atmosphere and a seasonal, locally sourced menu, The Fritton Arms was the perfect place for a leisurely Sunday afternoon lunch after exploring the nearby Somerleyton Hall and Gardens.

The Fritton Arms. Address: Church Lane, Fritton, Norfolk, NR31 9HA. Phone: 01493 484008. Email:

Many thanks to the Somerleyton team and the Visit Suffolk press office for arranging our visit in exchange for an honest review.

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