Michelin dining on the edge of Exmoor
The Masons Arms is a beautiful thatched 13th-century country pub that deals in cosy pints by the fire while also being home to a tour de force of fine dining.
For 16 years, Mark and Sarah Dodson have run their Michelin-starred restaurant (they were awarded the star within six months of opening and have held it ever since) and created a much-loved dining destination to which people travel from all over the country.
Nestled in lush rolling hills between Tiverton and north Devon, the dining room offers views of a bucolic scene which is the source of many ingredients on the plates. Local produce is key for Mark and Sarah and the couple have long supported local farmers and growers, as well as developing the skills of catering college students. Before decamping with the family to Devon to create his own restaurant, Mark headed up the kitchen of the famed Waterside Inn at Bray in Berkshire. So, as you’d imagine, the cooking is on point: elegant, cleverly executed and pleasingly appropriate to the surrounding coast and countryside. Happily, The Masons Arms isn’t somewhere to be reserved for special occasions as dishes are pleasingly priced.
Trencherman’s tip: arrive in plenty of time to grab a seat by the fire and sip a G&T in the low-ceilinged bar before heading to the attractive country-smart dining room.