Breakfast · Eating out · Gluten-Free · Pub

The Carrington Arms (Moulsoe near Newport)

I have to be completely honest and say that during Covid we had a bad experience here, but we decided to give this lovely-looking pub another chance and boy am I glad that we did.

The Carrington Arms (Review)

In fact, I have now been here twice for brunch in the same month, that is how much I enjoyed it. At first sight it looks very impressive, a large pub, with a large, modern conservatory, with ample parking and next to a play park and fields. Inside it is respectfully decorated using the original features of the very old building.

We came here for Mothers’ Day brunch, and though it was busy, they were not overrun, making mistakes and running out of stock like most places do on special days. I was very pleased by the wide variety of gluten-free options; which included a GF full-english breakfast (including toast). Not only that, but it tasted good, even the toasted bap tasted good and I think we all know (those of us with an intolerance or Coeliac disease) how rubbish most gluten-free food tastes. The bread was delicious and did not fall to pieces.

My whole family had a lovely “normal” muggles brunch too (i.e. not gluten free). My kids both had the Biscoff pancakes (I was not jealous!), they provide a kids portion (2 pancakes) which my 6 year old had, and an adults portion (4 pancakes), which my 11 year old enjoyed. In fact, my son said that they were the best pancakes that he has ever had! I was surprised that he thought they were better than The Pancake Parlour, as they would have been my choice for best pancakes in the area, however, I am not able to try these as I am currently on a gluten-free diet, so I will defer to his 11-year old-biscoff-loving-pancake-eating expertise on this one.

My husband had salmon and scrambled eggs, he said that our brunch felt like an experience and as though we were being taken care of. When I returned a few weeks later with a dear friend we had eggs and bacon on toast and a full-English breakfast. Everyone said that they thoroughly enjoyed their meals. My friend said that she was surprised to see Woburn bacon on the menu, as it is quite special; which it indeed was. In fact, the bacon was particularly memorable, absolutely delicious and so perfectly cooked. We also commented on the price, it was a good price for such a delicious breakfast at such a beautiful pub; it was also generous, and I did not feel hungry. The Anchor (for example), an equally beautiful village pub is quite stingy with its portion sizes.

The kids enjoyed playing in the park afterwards (a great way to burn off one of the pancakes), surprisingly the minuscule zip-line was way more fun than either of my kids imagined when they looked upon it. Never judge a book by its cover.

My only small gripe is that during Covid they instituted a booking policy which means that you have to enter your card details before you are able to make a booking, not only that but if you fail to show-up they will charge you £30 per person. I am not the kind of person who would simply not show up (though what if you needed to cancel for an emergency at the last minute?) I always call to cancel if I need to, however, £30 per person is excessive, especially as 2 of the party were children and we did not even spend £30 on them when we went out for dinner, let alone brunch. In fact when I went with my friend our entire bill was £30 total, so the fact that I would be charged £60 for not cancelling is extreme and disproportionate, especially for brunch. This rule came at a time when everyone was excited to go out for meals again once we emerged from the lockdowns during Covid. It is now 2023, it has been a few years, I honestly think they need to remove that card booking from their system now. They should definitely not charge a cancellation fee for brunch/breakfast or reduce the charge per person.

That little moan aside, I loved it and will definitely be returning again. I think the outside will be very nice in the summer, as they have a lovely conservatory and garden (including a giant chess set).

Additional Information

Address: Cranfield Road, Moulsoe, Newport Pagnell, MK16 0HB

Booking: Online (you will need to enter your card details)

Parking: Plenty on site

Cakes and Desserts · Eating out

Travel: Brockenhurst – The Buttery

I recently took my mum away for a little getaway to the New Forest; as she had never been there. I was hoping she would see the famous ponies – but it seems that even the ponies are on lockdown! We didn’t see a single pony this time. However, we did see some roaming cows which was pretty cool.

The best bit of our trip was our little foray over to Brockenhurst. I have to say that Lyndhurst appears to have deterioated some since I visited in 2014, I don’t know if Covid has led to most of the lovely shops in Lyndhurst closing down; but the last time I visited it was so pretty and they had lovely boutique shops that they no longer have. Plus the old hotel at the end of the high street really detracts from its beauty.

Brockenhurst, on the other hand, is just as beautiful as I remember it. The only downside is the lack of ponies. We didn’t stay long as it is very small; but we did stay for lunch and boy am I glad we did. We tried “The Buttery” even though there was a fairly long wait to get in (about 20 minutes). There was nothing particularly memorable about the decor, the service was slow (which they did warn us about) but they had the most most-watering, most unforgettable carrot cake I have ever had in my life. And I was completely unprepared.

I ordered chilli and chips, a pot of tea and a carrot cake. Whilst waiting for my my chips to cool down, I thought, I’ll just taste the carrot cake (mum had popped off to use the facilities). When mum got back she found me in a trance.

“What’s wrong” she said

“What?” I said in somewhat of a daze

“What’s wrong?” she repeated. I brought myself slowly back to Earth and said:

“Try………..this………….carrot cake………… (just a small bit though.)”

My mum tried a small bit of the carrot cake and swooned.

I then took another bite and was making noises akin to “When Harry Met Sally”. I had to stop.

I reluctantly decided I should eat my chips before I indulged in my dessert; but I kept a close eye on it the whole time and then when I had eaten enough chips to not cause offence to the kitchen I inhaled the carrot cake and promptly bought another slice for later. Mum also bought a slice, and she is diabetic, so she has to closely monitor her sugar levels. Though she said she would gladly endure a diabetic coma to eat the entire carrot cake.

I wish I could describe the taste; it was moist and it was creamy but it really was beyond description.

The weird thing is that neither of us really like carrot cakes, usually. But this was another level. So if you are ever in the area, in the New Forest; run right now and enjoy this marvel.