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Black Swan at Oldstead

Oldstead, Thirsk (Nr.), North Yorkshire, YO61 4BL
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. It has become a destination eaterie - drawing discerning customers in from miles around, some staying the night in one of their comfortable bedrooms. (See 'Places to Stay' section).

In the bar (see photo), 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 - both in content and plate display. An early summer snapshot brought 'Free-Range Chicken Terrine with Pea Mousse, Quail's Egg, Peas & Crispy Bacon'; 'Broad Bean & Summer Truffle Soup, with Yellison Goat's Cheese Ravioli' and 'Lobster Cocktail' among the refreshing-short list of starters.

'Line-Caught Wild Sea Trout with Crab-Crushed Potatoes, Samphire & Sauce Vierge'; 'Roast Breast & Confit Leg of Duck with Wild Mushroom Risotto, Gremolata & Sautéed Girolle Mushrooms' and Loin of Spring Lamb with Pressed Shoulder, Parmesan Gnocchi, Confit Tomatoes & Olives' were listed among the mains.

Vegetarians have their own interesting menu.

As much thought and effort goes into desserts - again, summer offerings of 'Strawberry & Passion Fruit Pavlova'; 'Valrhona Chocolate Fondant with Peanut Butter Ice Cream & Salted Caramel' and 'Pear Tart Tatin with Pear Purée, Mascarpone & Toasted Almonds' setting the style. While those with a more savoury tooth should be tempted by their selection of English Artisan Cheeses.
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Other Details

  • Food Style: Best Pubs for Food
  • Lunch: Thurs-Sat 12.00-14.00, Sun 12.00-14.30, set L Thurs-Sat £20 (2 courses), £25 (3 courses); set L Tasting Menu £35 (6 courses); set L Sun mains about £16 to £24; Restaurant mains from about £23 to £29; Bar Menu mai
  • Dinner: all week 18.00-21.00; mains from about £23 to £29, Tasting Menu £65 (7 courses)
  • 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 at the top of this page
  • Parking: Yes
  • Closed: 2 weeks January
  • Outside eating
  • Rooms available

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Contact Details

Tel: 01347-868387
Address: Oldstead, Thirsk (Nr.), North Yorkshire, YO61 4BL
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