This 16th century pub in The North Yorkshire National Park has been described as 'the perfect little pub in the country'; and the owning Banks family have farmed the locality for generations.
In the bar, expect stone flagstone floors, an open fire during cooler months, impressive oak fittings by the famous 'Mousey' Thompson and wooden tables enhanced for diners with slate place mats.
On the food front you can eat in the bar, the garden – if the weather allows – or in the smart upstairs restaurant – with Persian rugs, antiques and evening candlelight. The former offers a traditional menu ranging from Sandwiches and Ploughman's through 'Sausages & Mash with Buttered Greens' to upmarket Fish & Chips (with hand-cut chips, pea purée and homemade tartare sauce) and perhaps a modern Risotto.
Upstairs, the kitchen's real ambitions come to the fore, and restaurant-style dishes take over – however, their extreme success has meant that the à la carte menu has gone, and what’s offered is the tasting menu or nothing!
An early summer snapshot brought dishes such as 'Langoustine with Salted Strawberry'; 'Raw Deer with Wild Garlic'; ‘Sour Dough with Sour Butter’; ‘Scallop, cured in Rhubarb Juice’; ‘Crapaudine Beetroot cooked in Beef Fat’; ‘Cod with Cauliflower & Parsley’; ‘Salt Aged Lamb’; ‘Damson & Kernel’ and ‘Sheeps’ Milk with Douglas Fir Oil’.
Most reviews are ravingly complimentary – but the all or nothing restriction won’t suit all.
If you plan ahead, you can stay in one of their comfortable bedrooms (see 'Places to Stay' section).
- Food Style: Best Pubs for Food
- Lunch: Thurs-Sat 12.00-14.00, Sun 12.00-14.30, set L Tasting Menu £98 (Drinks package £60); Bar Menu mains £11 to £22
- Dinner: all week 18.00-21.00; Tasting Menu £98 (Drinks package £60)
- Seats: 30
- Wine: a well-chosen list is helpfully laid-out by wine 'type & character'. While they offer an excellent selection by the glass.
- Wheelchair access: Yes
- Nearest station: Thirsk Rail (8 miles)
- Directions: See the map on this page
- Parking: Yes
- Closed: 2 weeks January
- Outside eating
- Rooms available