The Bay Tree Restaurant is on Tarrant Street in the lovely market town of Arundel in West Sussex – where two great places for coffee and cake happen to be too. The Bay Tree is again, one of those places which has been on my ‘must visit’ list for a while now (for well over a year in fact!). I finally got round to it at the end of June after dropping my son off at the airport. We always seem to visit Arundel after dropping someone off at Gatwick.
It was a lovely sunny, hot day so we decided to sit outside in the small courtyard which, luckily was fairly shaded.
This is the Bay Tree’s lunch menu. Pastas, soup, Welsh rarebit, jacket potatoes, sandwiches…lots to choose from, plus a ‘specials board’. The evening menu sounds very nice indeed with slow roasted belly pork (my favourite) and other rather tempting dishes. The menu changes with the seasons.
We both decided to choose from the ‘specials board’. I had a sweet chilli beef wrap with French fries. The beef was cut into thin strips, nice and tender, not chewy nor gristly. Roasted peppers were also in the wrap and a small side salad of red onion, salad, radish, carrots and lettuce accompanied the dish. It was all very fresh and tasty and the sweet chilli left my mouth feeling a little tingly, but not uncomfortably so.
Geoff enjoyed the sausages and gravy with mashed potato, a red wine sauce and red onions.
Good choice of desserts. So good that I couldn’t decide, yet again. I liked the sound of every one of those desserts.
Naturally though, I chose the chocolate dish. Chocolate and salted caramel tart served with ice-cream and chocolate sauce. The pastry base was sweet and not too thick. The chocolate layer on top was hard chocolate whereas underneath it was a softer chocolate filling. It was rather a large slice and I’m afraid that for me, the salted caramel on the bottom was a little too rich. I’m a sweet-toothed kind of gal but it was a little too much, even for me. The caramel was spread quite thickly and perhaps if it had been spread a little thinner it may have been better. But I still managed to eat the lot! I did feel a little ‘bleurgh’ afterwards though and ate nothing else for the rest of the day as I was so full.
Geoff had apple and rhubarb crumble. ‘A good choice’ he said. Plus it was served with custard and he just loves custard!
The small courtyard has enough room to seat around twelve or fifteen perhaps, in two’s and three’s. Service was very friendly.
The Bay Tree is a lovely 16th century timber framed building. The interior was very pleasant, with wooden flooring, fresh-looking cream walls and olive coloured woodwork. They are open 7 days a week and are also available for private functions, weddings, birthday parties etc.,
If you’ve never visited Arundel Castle then you should. It’s not cheap to get in but on a nice day it’s worth it because they have an excellent garden and it’s beautiful to walk around or sit in. The inside of the castle is lovely too and very interesting. Also in Arundel there’s the River Arun where you can hire boats, sit on the banks of or walk beside. There’s the Wildfowl and Wetlands Centre too and a few antique shops, clothes shops and ‘nicky-nacky’ shops. It’s one of my favourite towns.
Living life, loving cake.