Smashing village pub with no pretensions, a good choice of local beers and highly regarded food
The good pub guide review
There's genuine unspoilt character to this pub next to the little River Bourne and the village green. That, mixed with the warmth of the welcome from the long-running owners and chatty locals, makes it a rather special place. Low-beamed interconnecting and homely rooms have all sorts of tables of differing sizes with high-winged wall settles, carved pews, chapel and carver chairs, and lots of pictures of local scenes and from imperial days. The main front windows are said to be made from the stern of a ship, and there's a log and coal fire in a huge fireplace. The snug is noteworthy for its fantastic collection of photographs and prints celebrating the local aviation history of Boscombe Down, alongside archive photographs of Stonehenge festivals of the 1970s and '80s. At the back is a homely, red-painted dining room. Four real ales on handpump come from breweries such as Butcombe, Fullers, Hop Back, Itchen Valley, Palmers, Plain, Ramsbury, Stonehenge and Triple fff and they also have farm cider on tap, over 30 malt whiskies and ten wines by the glass; board games. There are seats on the small front terrace with more on grass and in the back garden. The road leading to the pub goes through a ford, and it may be best to use an alternative route in winter when the water can be quite deep. There's an all-weather cricket pitch on the green.
The good pub guide food review
Country cooking uses game from local shoots (some bagged by the landlord), lamb raised in the surrounding fields and free-range local pork; they also have a new smoker (for fish, meat and cheese). Dishes might include venison carpaccio with truffle oil and parmesan, chicken liver pâté with onion marmalade, vegetarian cottage pie, local sausages with mash and onion gravy, daily fish dishes, lamb shoulder with pea purée and mash, crispy pork belly with sage and onion mash and scrumpy gravy, and puddings such as treacle tart and rocky road chocolate crunch.
Malet Arms, Newton Tony, Salisbury, Wiltshire, SP4 0HF
Weekdays: 12-3, 6-11, closed Mon, Tues
Saturday: 12-3, 6-11
Sunday: 12-4, (Bank Holidays only also 6-10)