Another pub and restaurant which serves a quality of food way above the traditional perception of what will be dished up on the plate in a pub and challenges the old definition. The Pony and Trap is tucked away in the Somerset countryside and is prized for its bar food as much as its Michelin star restaurant. The tasting menu offered with a choice of wine flight is a good indication of the seriousness of the operation, which is also reflected by the quality of the front of house staff, and although there is nothing staggeringly original in most of the dishes they represent a thoughtful variety and balance of ingredients. A nice touch was a table snack of homemade crisps with garlic mayo, just right with the pre-meal glass of fizz, and the canapés got the taste buds going - Porthilly oyster in a deep-fried Guinness batter with chilli mayo, little Yorkshire puddings and steak tartare with horseradish crème fraîche and nasturtium leaf, and flame-grilled mackerel with a tomato compote which dominated at first before allowing the fish to shine. With the tasting menu we had the fine wine flight, disappointingly no sign of any of the bottles. A lightly citrus-cured scallop ceviche with blackcurrant oil, elderflower nib and, almost inevitably, seaweed, made for a lovely taste and texture combination, though this was trumped by the lobster - a remarkable shredded tail quenelle with superb ewe’s milk curd, heritage tomatoes and toasted sourdough. Next came brill cooked on the bone for extra flavour, sweet confit lemon purée, fennel fronds, seaweed and some clams the need for which we were not at all sure about. The main course, which we found fairly ordinary, was best end of lamb with a pollenta chip, slow-cooked breast and with a red pepper purée, broad beans, artichoke and proper gravy. The palate cleanser came in the form of an amusing rocket-shaped ice lolly made of gin, blackcurrant juice, elderflower and cucumber, the latter rather too strong and spoiling the overall effect. Our dessert was a spiced rice pudding, the spice being nutmeg and the rice being almost a crème brûlée, with wild and cultivated strawberries and a very good strawberry sorbet - an extremely clever variation on the theme. All in all it was a bit uneven, but there were flashes of talent which made the detour worthwhile.