Exmoor may be small, but it does offer you a wonderful selection of tea rooms. Each one is quite different, maybe in position, or a daily speciality on the menu to store in your memory.
Today we visited the Exmoor Tea Rooms in Withypool. From Dulverton, cross up and over Winsford Hill, passing the world-famous Exmoor ponies grazing with their foals. If you are lucky you may see a deer too.
On leaving the moor turn left at the first signpost and drop downhill to the picturesque village of Withypool. Past the Church where you could be forgiven to think there is a Shell fuel station, with Shell pumps still standing. They however no longer sell petrol but are a well photographed point of interest as visitors wander through the village before popping into the Withypool tearoom next door.
The staff are a good team attentively greeting customers with a smile and a tempting menu, much of it homemade on the premises
There are plenty of seats inside or outside where you can ponder on your choices. While the visitors sit in the sun, the River Barle chuckles past, the ducks quack and the sheep in the nearby field baa a local greeting. With a cold local beer or cider and a naughty hot chocolate with all the trimmings one can relax to study the menu (blow the diet!)
The hot daily specials are great temptations and, if you have scrambled over the moor with an exuberant dog, a great treat for a sharp appetite. Dogs are always welcome inside and out. Fresh water bowls are provided.
Home made curries and soups with locally made rolls go down well. We have been attracted by the aroma of fresh baking; it was the steak pies, succulent meat wrapped in some of the best pastry we have tasted for a long time - crisp and tasty and made in the tea room.
Other visitors order an enormous Withybig Cream Tea with clotted cream which can be topped off with strawberry or whortleberry jam - a real favourite here. There is a magnificent range of home- made cakes and we see them being baked in the kitchen.
As a reminder of ones visit, there is a fine selection of local jams and honey to take away.