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The Brisley Bell, Brisley

Muddy Says: This uber stylish country pub in the heart of Norfolk has a Michelin trained Chef offering a tasty menu – definitely worth a detour!

From the outside The Brisley Bell is a quaint 17th century country pub, walk inside and you might be surprised by the wonderfully stylish interior. The new owners have done a great job of mixing the oldie Brisley charm with some fabulous modern and eclectic details. The rich warm colours, heavy drapes, and textured wallpapers make this pub incredibly warm and cosy and I could easily see myself snuggled up by the fire drinking a bottle of red wine on a winter’s afternoon. Plenty of unique touches such as the tree stump wooden gazebo and pheasant feather picture all made by local tradespeople – which reflects the owner’s desire to support all things Norfolk.

bristly bell dining room

garden room books shelves wooden tables

This is a large country pub with several rooms to eat and drink: A traditional bar room, which is very much in keeping with the original pub and therefore where you’ll find many of the local farmers, a quieter relaxed lounge with big comfy sofas and chairs by the fire, a more formal dining area and an amazing garden room bursting with books.

We visited on a midweek lunchtime and the pub was buzzing with people covering the full spectrum of ages. This clearly is a popular spot and it’s worth booking ahead. Like the pub, the menu combines the traditional with some lovely modern influences and our lunch was superb.

 

bristly bell pub garden weeping willow gazebo

Beautiful garden with gazebo eating area, croquet lawn, love swing and a meadow for the kids to explore – worthy of a mention in our 12 Pubs with Fab Gardens feature.

If you’re looking for a longer visit, you can stay overnight in one of their six individually designed rooms.

hotel bedroom cowhide rug exposed brick wall

The eclectic design continues with a lovely mix of high spec modern features such as the Delonghi coffee machine and DAB radio with traditional antique furniture, tapestry wall hangings and heavy drapes. Lots of lovely bespoke touches such as roll top baths in the bedroom, cowhide rugs, huge wooden headboards made from a slice of oak tree and the railway sleeper window supports.

Because everywhere you want to visit is approximately a 30 minute drive, this is an ideal base to explore Norfolk plus you’re away from the busy tourist hubs if you prefer the peace and quiet. If travelling with kids – three rooms are large enough for a Z-bed (for an additional £25 a night) but families with teenagers may need to book two rooms.

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The Urban Guide to the Countryside - Norfolk