The Treehouse Restaurant at Alnwick Gardens – Alnwick, England - Gastro Obscura

The wondrous garden anchored by the Treehouse Restaurant was once part of the official residence of the Duke of Northumberland in the 11th century. Today, the land is known as the Alnwick Gardens, a bucolic setting featured in the early Harry Potter films. For the dendrophiles among us, the arborous building at the heart of these gardens is more likely something featured in your wildest dreams.

The 6,000-square-foot complex is a celebration of wood: pine, cedar, and redwood, all carefully intertwined to make a theater of natural elements suspended in the tree-line of the ancient forest. Growing trees literally spew forth from the floors while in the wintertime, a cozy fireplace lazily crackles. Need you guess what the tables and chairs are made from?

The menu boasts Northern English fare with an emphasis on seasonality and locality. While the menu reads beautifully, some diners note that execution can be spotty. Perhaps a warm drink by the fire would do a winter soul enough good.

For its design alone, the restaurant is well worth a trip from nearby Newcastle. You’ll surely work up an appetite gushing over all the wood.