Going Up the Country

By Gem - 12:38:00

It really doesn't get much better than the weekend away I had last week. Good food, gorgeous setting and fantastic company. My friend Oonagh is moving to Amsterdam to start her MA course and her family organised a big send off for her at their beautiful home in Monmouth. They are based in the listed Toll Gate in Mitchel Troy and I'm more than a little envious of their cosy home and cute little piglets.

pecan pie

Oonagh made pecan pie, chocolate cake and a raspberry and elderflower cake. Obviously I had to sample all three so I could judge them properly ;) Oonagh's family provided a lovely barbeque with produce from their small holding and the homemade elderflower wine and mead flowed all night.


As night drew in we gathered around the fire and sing folk songs accompanied by a fiddle, banjo, guitar and Irish drum. We were very merry as the photo of my face below illustrates.

mead elderflower wine

The singing and shenanigans went on well into the early hours of the morning.


Waking up to these views was an absolute pleasure and something I could get used to.

The generous hospitality continued on the second day with Oonagh's soda bread and eggs from the chickens making the best breakfast. Food miles = a few metres. I got to wear my new wellies and give them a bit of a test before I head off to Bestival in a few weeks time. For any fellow wide calf ladies I can recommend the short Hunter boots, they fit perfectly. Even though I enjoyed my time in the country I'm much more suited to life in the town, I was so unprepared for camping and have the least practical clothing ever.

soda bread

I need to say a big thank you to my generous hosts for the weekend and wish the best of luck to Oonagh on her exciting adventure in Amsterdam.

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  1. Oh my, I am not joking but I think I know exactly which tollgate you are speaking of, it's on a corner, a fork in the road almost - we stayed in a chapel 5min from Mitchel Troy in feb, it looks amazing and it looks like you had a great time :)

    Laura x

  2. This looks so lovely! And that cake looks amazing!!!

  3. What an amazing place to live! This looks like just the perfect weekend!

  4. Oh god I want a friend like her to bake me all the cakes! Looks like a fab weekend and those views are to die for!


  5. Looks like such a lovely trip and weekend! I love the idea of having a small holding, looks very beautiful!

  6. This looks like so much fun!

    Maria xxx

  7. Ah Gemma! it was lovely to have you :) xx


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