Prince Charles's three-course Christmas dinner is cheaper than at Toby Carvery

Prince Charles’s no-nonsense Christmas dinner menu at his Highgrove estate is priced £3 cheaper than a Toby Carvery.

Three courses at the royal house and gardens cost £45, while the starting point for the same number of servings at the restaurant chain is £47.99.

Both of the festive destinations take a traditional approach, although the surroundings and fare are markedly different.

A feast of mains at the ‘home of the roast’ includes its daily selection of hand-glazed meats and trimmings served with pigs in blankets.

The family restaurant is offering ‘five perfectly cooked meats’, including lamb, along with roast potatoes, steamed vegetables and pigs in blankets.

The other options are salmon en papillote, with a lemon butter sauce, and spinach and smoked cheddar and mushroom pithivier.

There’s also the stocking-sized challenge of the footlong pig in blanket which was launched in November and is available as a separate dish.

While the deck will be ‘piled high’ at Carvery restaurants, diners will enjoy more refined surroundings at Highgrove, the private residence of the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall in Tetbury, Gloucestershire.

Crowning the pictureless menu, which takes a ‘less is more’ approach, is a ballotine of turkey, served with a leg and cranberry sausage roll.

Alternatively, diners can choose from sea bream with pommes Anna and mustard and tarragon sauce or a beetroot Wellington with chestnut stuffing and butternut squash sauce.

Desserts at the carveries include seven sweet treats, with a classic Christmas pudding coming with a vegan option.

One of the most indulgent afters is a billionaires’ bar, consisting of layers of double chocolate chip cookie, creamy toffee and chocolate ganache.

At Tetbury, the Prince’s diners can tuck into eggnog panna cotta with a festive biscuit and a hazelnut praline Christmas log. Classic Christmas pudding is also on the uncluttered menu, served with orange cream.

The dinners, prepared by Highgrove’s resident chefs using local ingredients where possible, also include a two-course option at £35.

Guests at the retreat can enjoy table service in the elegant Orchard Room, which is decorated with paintings of the Prince of Wales and his family.

The nearest of the pub roast chain’s 158 UK restaurants, where prices for the Christmas dinner may vary, is 14 miles away in Brockworth, Gloucester.

The estate’s festive dining and shopping season ends on December 18, with bookings for festive meals based on time slots, while diners are currently able to book for Christmas Day at the carveries.

A spokesperson for Toby Carvery said: ‘At the home of the roast, our specially trained chefs spend 364 days perfecting our carvery in time for our main event, “Roastmas”.

‘Our three-course Christmas Day dinner includes a selection of five hand-glazed roasted meats, including lamb, as well as all the trimmings including freshly steamed veg, perfectly ruffled roasties, yorkies and pigs in blankets, all cooked from scratch on the day.

‘We believe our Christmas menu offers our guests fantastic value, with a delicious festive starter and dessert as well as a hearty carvery which can be customised to suit tastebuds, piled high at the deck and refreshed with unlimited veggies and roasties too.’

A spokesperson for The Prince’s Foundation said: ‘We are delighted that so many people have been able to enjoy our Christmas lunches and suppers, which combine the best organic, sustainably-produced, locally-sourced ingredients prepared by our expert Highgrove chefs.’

The hospitality industry’s critical yuletide has been hit by new Covid restrictions announced by the Prime Minister on Wednesday evening.

Under the ‘Plan B’ measures a move to home working where possible will take place from Monday, masks will become mandatory in most indoor public venues and NHS Covid passes will be needed for larger events.

There is also the impact from the rise in Omicron cases on the willingness of people to eat out in social settings.

Kate Nicholls, chief executive of UK Hospitality, called for government financial support to allow the sector to weather the fallout.

She said that while hospitality is ‘safe and can continue to host celebrations in the lead up to Christmas’, the measures ‘risk devastating the hospitality sector amid its most important time of the year’.

The Government had a series of support measures in place for hospitality businesses before the announcement, but many industry representatives say these do not go far enough.

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