This handsome 18th century building used to be a pub. Exposed beams and brickwork and chunky wooden tables still give the place a homely feel, but the focus now is firmly on food and wine. There's a cosy first floor bar for those all important pre-dinner drinks, then its straight down to the main dining area (or on a sunny day, one of the al fresco huts in the garden) to sample ex-Chez Bruce chef Chris Bailey's modern British menu. While the produce might be local, with some even coming from the restaurant's own allotment, the cooking style ranges much further afield. A gaspacho essence comes with pan Catalan (grilled bread with garlic and tomato) and Cumbrian ham and a Cornish rump of lamb is given a Middle Eastern makeover with couscous, smoked aubergine and preserved lemon.
Information on The Black Rat , 88 Chesil Street , Winchester
Open: Sat & Sun 12:00-14:15, Daily 19:00-21:30
Seating Capacity: 40
Private Dining: yes for up to 16 guests
Wheel Chair Access: No
Accreditation: Michelin Star, AA Rosette, Good Food Guide 5/10
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