A wonderfully hot day for members and guests, 48 in total and met around 11:00 for tea or coffee and biscuits in the garden, of Le Manoir, it was glorious in the sun. Lots of conversation took place as members gathered.

Afterwards there was a tour of the large gardens, for those that wanted with very positive comments.

Then time for the reception, still in the garden, with Veuve Clicquot Champagne and some interesting and delightful canapes.

The call for lunch was made and everyone proceeded to the beautiful Belle Epoque dining room.

A welcome was made by the President and Grace was said This was followed by a thoroughly absorbing 30 minute talk by Raymond Blanc, including how the staff now only work a four day week and that he has no vacancies for staff.

Raymond was introduced to Rowan Trim winner of the Gastronomes Award in 2022

It was then to lunch and the first wine was introduced by the sommelier Claire, a Vinho Verde Alvarinho Contacto 2021 that accompanied the starter, Orkney scallop, vegetable escabeche and Kaffir lime very beautifully presented in the shell.

We then moved onto Ricotta agnolotti and tomato essence, which was very fresh on the palate

Time for the Raffle that raised £650.00. A wonderful achievement and a fabulous prize donated by Gastronome, Mark Grove

Claire then produced the next wine. Pinot Noir 2020 Vignoble Guillaume, Franche-Comte to be served with the main course. Roasted Cotswold chicken and spring vegetables. It was delicious and went very well with the wine.

Next we were served with a the delightful pudding which looked stunning on the plate: – Chocolate and raspberry crumble – It was paired with a lovely dessert wine, Muscat de Saint Jean de Minervois.

Onto, Coffee and Tea and some mini but very well-made Petits Fours.

The toasts were given and the Sante to the chef Luke Selby. A copy of Raymond Blanc’s book was given to everyone which was a nice touch and well received.

Raymond came back to sign books and talk to the gastronomes and their guest’s. It was the end of a wonderful lunch.

Some members stayed overnight, locally at the Coach and Horses and that was a very nice afternoon and evening.

The whole event very well organised the Honorary Secretary