We all love a good pie, right?
To celebrate British Pie Week, five of the best pubs are going into to a culinary battle on Thursday 10th March at The Chequers in Churchill.
The Chequers, The Double Red Duke and The Swan are being joined by The Kingham Plough and The Swan Inn at Swinbrook for an epic encounter to see who will be crowned The Great British Pie Off Champion 2022.
Come and get involved and enjoy a Pie and a Pint for just £20
The guest judges will crown our Great British Pie Champion at the end of the evening
For all the details and how to book, visit www.countrycreatures.com/events
Terence King and Gemma Finch of The Angel at Burford have been revealed as the new landlord and landlady of The Fox Inn at Great Barrington.
In a message on Instagram, they said:
"We finally have the keys to pub number 2!
We are delighted to have taken on The Fox At Barrington! We are currently closed while we fully refurbish and look forward to welcoming people back in early March.
Big thanks to our team for their support and loyalty as we expand and we look forward to continuing to give great hospitality over both our pubs!"
The traditional 17th-century pub sits on the edge of the River Windrush just 4 miles west of Burford.
With only 6 weeks until the Cheltenham Festival, it's time to start planning your week.
Join a panel of horse racing royalty at The Hollow Bottom on Monday 14th March, the eve of the Festival, for a night of discussion, heated debates and the best tips.
Racing Tv's Alex Steedman will chair a panel which includes top jockey Sam Twiston Davies, Grand National-Winning Jockey Carl Llewellyn, Racing Post Tipster Paul Kealy and Star Sports betting guru Luke Tarr.
Enjoy a complimentary drink on arrival, some free bets and some price pushes on the night.
Tickets are just £20 and can be purchased HERE.
Sam Bowser has joined The Wild Rabbit in Kingham, Oxfordshire, as Executive Chef. He leads the kitchen at the acclaimed pub, which serves both the three-AA-rosette restaurant and the bar.
Bowser joins from Llangoed Hall Hotel, Powys, where he held the position of Head Chef since 2019. Prior to that, he spent four years in the Cotswolds as Head Chef at both Dormy House Hotel and the two Michelin-starred Whatley Manor Hotel. His time in the Cotswolds followed roles working with Philip Howard at The Square in London and with Raymond Blanc at Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons in Oxfordshire. Bowser served a brief stint working for the Bamford family as a private chef seven years ago, where he gained a wealth of knowledge and respect for quality, organic ingredients.
The menus at The Wild Rabbit will continue to be led by the seasons, offering locally sourced and ingredient-focused modern British food. An open kitchen in the 42-cover dining room allows diners to enjoy the theatre of the chefs and brings a dynamic atmosphere to the space. In the bar, a more informal menu provides more relaxed pub food, with the bar seating 34 covers and an additional 40 covers on the terrace during good weather.
Bowser comments: “I am thrilled to be back in the Cotswolds and working with Carole Bamford again. I have been lucky enough to work in many high-end and acclaimed kitchens, but it was working with the Bamford family where I really developed an in-depth understanding of seasonality. The Wild Rabbit offers the perfect setting for me as a chef,
with a quality-driven kitchen and access to exceptional produce from Daylesford Organic - I cannot wait to get stuck in.”
Ewan Grant, General Manager of The Wild Rabbit, comments: “We are excited to welcome Sam to team. He brings considerable experience and expertise from some renowned kitchens. This, coupled with his understanding of The Wild Rabbit, the area and our ethos make him a perfect match as we look forward to an exciting year ahead.”
Global travel site Big 7 announced their Top 50 Gastropubs list for 2021 which features 3 pubs from here in the Cotswolds.
From London boozers with creative small plates to local country inns boasting a Michelin Star, these places are shining a light on regional British ingredients. Think luxury scotch eggs, house-cured meats, and artisan ingredients... places where you come for a laid back Sunday roast and a delicious date night dinner.
Here's what they say about the 3 featured pubs from the Cotswolds.
THE WILD RABBIT, KINGHAM
The incredible food at The Wild Rabbit all starts with a huge emphasis on sourcing the best ingredients from its own market garden at Daylesford farm. Once that has been done, the dishes they serve to are contemporary and yet exactly what you want in terms of comfort food. The Wild Rabbit is a proper British inn, where you can eat, drink and sleep.
Must-eats include the South Devon beef ribeye with Bledington Blue cheese and pickled walnut, with one of the tempting seasonal soufflés for dessert.
THE CHURCHILL ARMS, PAXFORD
This 17th century inn has chef Nick Deverell-Smith at its helm, who trained under Gordon Ramsay and Marco Pierre White. So it should come as no surprise the food here is nothing short of perfection. There’s all the classics such as a pretty-pink Beef Wellington, as well as creative twists using locally sourced ingredients.
THE KILLINGWORTH CASTLE, WOOTTON Nr WOODSTOCK
‘The Killy’, as it’s locally known, has gone from strength to strength since a refurb a few years ago. A beautiful 17th-century coaching inn with barn bedrooms for guests and a menu full of local goodies.
Most of the ingredients are organic and you can taste the goodness in every mouthful. There’s even the owner’s own craft beer to sip: three ales, all brewed in the Cotswolds.
Visit bigseventravel.com/the-50-best-gastropubs-in-the-uk for the full list
We couldn't let Negroni week pass without sharing a classic recipe.
This one has been created for us by Harry (@shakermakers on Insta) at The Tavern in Cheltenham.
25ml Sweet Vermouth
Garnish - Orange Wedge
Photographer: Glenn Dearing (@glenndearing)
We enjoyed a wonderful lunch at The Bathurst Arms this week.
The pub is set in an idyllic location beside the River Churn in North Cerney, between Cheltenham and Cirencester, and offers a wonderful organic small-plate and grill menu with 95% of ingredients being sourced from certified organic farmers, producers and suppliers
It felt like we had to wait an age for the Double Red Duke to finally open its doors. After the announcement in November 2020 that Sam and Georgie Pearman had acquired what was The Plough at Clanfield and would launch in February 2021, lockdowns and various restrictions delayed that until May 17th.
Even more exiting was hearing that they had secured the services of Hawksmoor and PittCue's Richard Turner to work alongside Head Chef Richard Sandiford. This could only mean two things, fire and an abundance of meat.
Of course the menu isn't just full of meat. There is a cheese & onion tatin, veggie mixed grill and a trio of salads for the herbivores amongst us, but there's no fun in any of that,
Unsurprisingly, and right up our street, there is a separate menu for steak cuts from where we picked a incredible chunk of medium-rare ribeye. I sat and watched the chefs cooking various ribs and T-bones over the flames from the 14-seater kitchen counter which felt like the front row of the world's best theatre. I always find open kitchens captivating and could sit there all day, especially watching these masters of meat at work.
Away from beef steaks, the "Large Plate" menu boasts wild fish on-the-bone, grilled rose veal chop, fried oysters & egg tartare, spit roast turbot (which looked amazing when it went by to another table) and half a chicken spit roast, as well as the classic fish & chips, pie & mash and the Double Red burger.
The "small plates" menu (nobody does "starters" anymore) is equally exciting and includes some exquisite Wood Roast Sea Scallops with Wild Garlic Butter, Milk & Honey Lamb Chops with Pea & Haggis Salad (I will try this when I go next) and some superb sticky and perfectly charred Apple Glazed Bacon Ribs, Apple, Tamarind & Fennel Slaw.
If you're feeling hungry, which we were, there's also a "snacks" menu at the very beginning featuring some wonderful light and crispy Dublin Bay Scampi and three different flatbreads. We chose the Courgette, Wild Garlic & Mint one to share but you would probably need one each depending on how many other dishes you choose and how big your appetite is.
There wasn't any room for a dessert. If I was staying the night, and home was just a short walk away up the stairs, I would have probably dipped for the white chocolate cheesecake or the sticky toffee pudding. However, if the choice is more meat or leaving room for a pudding, there is only ever going to be one winner.
If staying the night is an option for you, then the nineteen bedrooms are all as heavenly as you would expect. They each, like the whole of the interior, carry the Pearman stamp. There is an abundance of snugs where you can hide away from the world for an afternoon, and the magnificent Downton Abbey-famed Oxfordshire countryside is quite literally on the doorstep. What's not to like?
The Dodo Pub Co. today announced that will be creating a new pub in Witney.
The Part And Parcel will be located in the old Post Office in the market square with work commencing on the site very soon.
This will be the sixth Dodo pub. Their portfolio already boasts The Rusty Bicycle, The Rickety Press and The Up In Arms, all in Oxford, The Bottle of Sauce in Cheltenham and The Last Crumb in Reading.
It was announced today that The Ebrington Arms has been sold to the Barkby Group.
In a statement on Instagram, Ebrington landlady Claire Alexander said;
"After nearly 15 years, we’re finally ready to hand over the reigns at The Ebrington Arms.
We were approached a while ago and it felt like the right time so we can focus on @thekillingworth (our other pub just up the road!) & our family.
Going to miss everyone who has helped us achieve more than we ever dreamed of at The Ebrington Arms. While the locals were aghast when we rocked up from London in 2007 having never had a pub before, I think we’ve built a sustainable business to be proud of and put our corner of the Cotswolds on the map. We’ve met characters from all over the world and some have become lifelong friends. The Yubby is where we learned the trade, brought our kids into the world, started brewing @yubbybitter and created a pub that foodies and beer lovers kept coming back to.
Jim and I are SO very thankful for that. A pub is just walls without its people & atmosphere after all.
New owners, Barkby Group, are no newcomers to the trade. With a heritage in maintaining character in their unique Cotswold properties, they’ve told us little will change and we hope you give them a big, famous Yubby welcome.
While it feels like the end of an era to us (ref all my nostalgic ‘before & after’ posts of late!) the team will largely remain the same but our Head chef, Adam Brown, has moved to The Killingworth Castle with us.
Bottoms up darlings, it’s been a pleasure and an absolute blast.
Love, Claire & Jim"
The Barkby Group boast The Five Alls at Filkings, The Bull at Fairford and The Plough Inn at Kelmscott in their portfolio of pubs and hotels in the Cotswolds.
Following the launch of The Wild Rabbit in 2013, Carole Bamford will open her second pub with rooms at the beginning of next year. Keeping true to its original heritage, The Fox will remain a welcoming pub for the community, and pitstop for country walks.
Continuing the legacy of its previous owners, the traditional inn will serve a hearty menu with classic pub dishes such as burgers, fish & chips and Sunday roasts, made with local organic ingredients. Seating up to 90 covers inside, a spacious terrace will accommodate a further 40 people.
The pub will house eight bedrooms, all decorated in Daylesford’s signature style and opposite, The Coach House offers a self-catering alternative ideal for larger families or parties of friends.
Daylesford Farm is set in over 2,500 acres of idyllic rolling organic countryside. Recently awarded a Green Star by the Michelin Guide, the farm is home to the flagship farmshop, Bamford Wellness Spa and three restaurants: The Old Spot, The Trough Café and The Legbar. The Cookery School offers a range of courses to suit different levels and a busy schedule of events such as floristry courses, gardening workshops and market garden tours provides plenty to do.
After months of domestic imprisonment, the twelfth of April had become a highly significant day as pubs and restaurants were allowed reopen, albeit outside, and everything in the world was hunky-dory once again.
It snowed. Is this some kind of sick joke Mother Nature? She's obviously a bitter and twisted teetotaller.
We didn't venture out until Friday. We also chose to go at lunchtime as I thought a balmy 9 degrees was more appealing than 4 degrees later on that evening. My choice was also based on the size of heaters so The Hollow Bottom it was.
Before The Lucky Onion Group acquired the pub, the previous owners had replaced a tiny unfunctional car park at the rear with some tiered decking, a "beach bar", a boules court and BBQ pit. Although I have to this day never seen either of the latter two used, it was an impressive space.
Two thirds of the space is covered with the rest open for people to soak up the spring sunshine in their coats and hats. We were undercover.
I had gone prepared with four layers and a scarf. However, after five minutes I had removed the scarf and two of the layers as the monster gas burner was making us feel like we were in Greece rather than Guiting Power.
The Hollow Bottom has a new menu which was long overdue. They tried putting their stamp on various pub classics when they first opened. Some really worked. The Ham, Egg and Chips is an impressive whole honey-glazed ham hock and has survived the cull. Others, like the chicken in a basket, really didn't work and have had the chop.
The menu consists of some light bites, including things like 1/2 Pint Prawns with Aioli and Chilli Whitebait. There are ten starters, twelve main courses, if you include the four "pub classics" and a selection of sides.
We ordered the Twice Baked Haddock Souffle, New Seasons Asparagus, Chives & Caviar Sauce and the Confit Wood Pigeon & Chicken Liver Pate to start, followed by the Cotswold Venison & Claret Pie (with a courtesy side of fries for the gravy) and the Spiced Rubbed Pork Belly, Spring Carrots, Pearl Barley Risotto & Apple Chilli for mains.
It was incredibly impressive.
This was seriously good grown-up cooking which the pub deserves. It was the kind of food you would expect to see at its sister pub, The Wheatsheaf in Northleach which has always been superb.
We may have to sometimes battle the elements and the part of your brain that questions why you would consider eating outside in freezing temperatures, but my god, it's good to be back out
Landlords Pete Creed and Tom Noest of The Bell at Langford are opening a sister pub in the Cotswolds.
The Lamb Inn at Shipton-under-Wychwood will be opening on June 21st 2021.
You can see the sample menu below.
You can keep up to date with developments at www.thelambshipton.com.
There are lots of restaurants, delis and pubs offering awesome takeaways this week here in the Cotswolds. Check with each for their opening times and availability and support as many as you can.
The Stump, Nr. Northleach
Incredible pizza from the Stump Shack
Smiths, Bourton on the Water
Burger and dirty fries heaven
Hiro Sushi, Chipping Norton and surrounding areas
Awesome sushi to your door
Greedys Fish and Chips, Stow on the Wold
Great British classic
Holee Cow, Cheltenham
The best burgers in 'Nam
The Coconut Tree, Cheltenham
Sri Lankan heaven
The Old Butchers, Stow on the Wold
The best takeaway menu on the market
Click and collect Japanese takeaway
The Bell Inn, Langford
Michelin quality food at home
Sublime Indian Cuisine
Woodsman, Stratford upon Avon
Wild at heart
The Ebrington Arms, Nr Chipping Campden
A weekend takeaway for your walk
Great food at home
Fine-dining at home
D'Ambrosi, Stow on the Wold
The best deli in the Cotswolds
Bottle of Sauce, Cheltenham
Burger Click and collect
The Cotswold Guy
Great food delivered to your door
The Find, Cheltenham
Brunch and Sunday Lunch at Home
The Bathurst Arms, North Cerney
Great takeaway menu
Sourdough Revolution, Lechlade
Wonderful bread, pizza, chicken + more!
The Killingworth Castle, Nr Woodstock
A treat for your walk
The Bathurst Arms in North Cerney, Nr Cirencester, has been awarded five prestigious stars for "Organic Served Here" by the Soil Association Certification.
It is the first pub in the UK to receive 5 stars and the award has been a target for Bathurst Arms director, Jordan Pelly and his head chef, Michal Wlodarcyk, since they reopened the doors to the famous pink pub in July this year.
Mark Machin, Development Manager for Soil Association Certification said, “We’re very proud to welcome The Bathurst Arms to the movement of hospitality businesses that have decided to grow back better by putting sustainability at the heart of their business.
“After a particularly challenging period for the industry, it’s really encouraging to see businesses like The Bathurst continue engaging with Organic Served Here. By sourcing organic food and drink, Organic Served Here award holders are helping reduce the carbon footprint of their menu and ensure higher levels of biodiversity on our farmland.”
Jordan said: “This is great news for us as a young team with my first business, the message behind what we offer here is a strong one and something we should all learn more about. We are so lucky to have such fantastic farmers on our doorstep like Purton House Organics, Duchy Home Farm and Daylesford Organic and fishmongers New Wave and Flying Fish, all of these businesses help us source the finest ingredients for our menu with strong sustainable principals. As well as the ethical contribution sourcing organic & wild foods is such an obvious choice for us, as we strive for the best quality ingredients. From beef fed on a pasture diet to ingredients in season, flavor is paramount with these choices inevitably kinder to the environment and world we live in.
“We offer great small plates that showcase our approach using the best the seasons have to offer. Right now we are serving dishes like “Salt baked celeriac with wild girolles and mushroom”; “Purton Farm organic pork belly with Jerusalem artichoke with pork & apple sauce”; and for the seafood lovers, line caught plaice, on the bone with a smoked lime butter and pickled sea lettuce.”
The pub has also recently been using surplus organic vegetables and fruit from the village as there are several allotments owned by the nearby Bathurst Estate looked after by hard working villagers.
“We plan to roll out a five star organic menu in a take away format as well, we understand that in the current climate not everyone is comfortable eating out so we want to be able to create our dishes for you to take home and enjoy. “Jordan added.
There is no better way to celebrate the end of summer than a feast at The Swan at Ascott-under-Wychwood with ex Hawksmoor Executive Head Chef, Richard H Turner.
From Friday 18th to Sunday 20th September, Richard will be cooking abundance of grilled, smoked and spiced food including slow grilled prime rib of beef with bone marrow nihari sauce, devilled monkfish skewer with tomato and curry leaf, spiced tomahawk lamb chops, smoked aubergine with mint pomegranate and cashew cream, the list goes on, including an array of flatbreads and sides.
Saturday has already sold out but spaces remain for Friday and Sunday.
You can find the full menu HERE or at the bottom of the page.
Booking is essential and social distancing rules will be in place.
Adults £30 and children (under 16) £12.
For all the information, visit www.countrycreatures.com/the-village-grill-with-richard-turner
The readers of the Telegraph have voted for their favourite pubs in the UK and have named 3 from the Cotswolds in the list.
The Ebrington Arms, near Chipping Campden, was voted the winner in the "Best for Food" category.
The Potting Shed in Crudwell near Malmesbury was runner-up in the "Pub of the Year" with The Swan at Ascott-under-Wychwood achieved the same position in the "Best for Rooms" class.
You can find all the winners at runner-ups here - www.telegraph.co.uk/food-and-drink/pubs-and-bars/raise-glass-telegraph-pub-year-2020-plus-best-pubs-food-families/
Originally scheduled for an April opening, theatre is soon to be served in Cheltenham. The Alchemist will be launching on the 28th August bringing immersive experiences, expertly crafted cocktails and all day dining to Gloucestershire. Creative bar and restaurant concept, The Alchemist is bringing its famed cocktail concoctions to The Brewery Quarter, which is set to be a new favourite with cocktail connoisseurs in Cheltenham.
The 4,500 sqft venue designed by London agency Turner Bates will feature an impressive emerald marbled bar top and signature dark wall murals. It’s not just the menu that plays with your senses as the bespoke mind bending floor-to-ceiling bar takes centre stage and will provide the perfect back drop for The Alchemists signature cocktails. Cocktails served with a dash of theatre such as the Colour Changing One created with Grey Goose Vodka, Briottet Apple, soda & citrus which, as the name suggests, will mysteriously change colour before your eyes! Guests can also opt for The Cherry Poppins; a concoction of Whitley Neil raspberry gin, cherry, strawberry, citrus and a cherry fog bubble that’s sure to set alight anyone’s Instagram feed!
To complement the show-stopping cocktails, The Alchemist Cheltenham will offer an all-day dining menu which of course includes a touch of playfulness, starter dishes such as the Chorizo & Cheddar Doughballs (choose your cheese level with the accompanying syringe) and Tempura Prawn Lollipops. For something more substantial, enjoy Pan-Fried Seabass with spicy Bombay potatoes, coconut yoghurt and charred lime and for a delicious plant-based meal try the Vegan Cauliflower Katsu Curry. To finish, the flaming Cotton Candy Baked Alaska is a must for a dessert with extra-oomph or, for something a little more low-key, order an Espresso Martini & Petit Fours.
The Alchemist Cheltenham will open on Friday 28 th of August at 10am.
For more information, please visit: www.thealchemist.uk.com
Pizza masters Baz and Fred have taken over The New Inn at Coln St Aldwyns.
The duo known for their incredible food at The Stump at Foss Cross will open the pub later this month.
In a statement on Instagram they announced "Roughly a year ago Baz & Fred achieved their childhood dream and opened their first pub together The Stump, a Cotswold pub turned pizzeria. Simple, delicious food done well. It’s been a fantastic first year and we can’t wait for many more to follow and working alongside our awesome team and customers."
"We’ve had such a great time running The Stump so we’ve decided to do it all over again. Introducing Baz & Fred’s New Inn, located in the beautiful village of Coln St Aldwyns. A stunning pub not too far from The Stump. During lock down we introduced a burger night at The Stump which has been an overwhelming success. We thought it was only fitting to increase this offering and give the people more of what everyone clearly wants. As a result of this we have taken to the streets of Coln! Expect smokey blues, booze, burgers & an all-round good time. The main staple of the menu will be a variety of burgers which have been a real hit. There will be other rolling specials, sides and main dishes on offer that will have Spanish, Portuguese and Italian influences plus anything that Baz & Fred feel is delicious enough to make an appearance, which is a fair bit!"
"The New Inn is similar to The Stump. It’s an old roadside Inn that is ingrained into the history of the village. The pub is currently closed so Baz & Fred could move in for renovations and are currently in the process of changing things around, attempting to bring the inside of the pub back to its original design decades ago. Everything is full steam ahead; the new open kitchen is being fitted alongside the new local’s bar plus lots more."
"We aim to be open by the end of the month but please keep your eyes peeled for updates. We can’t wait to see you all down here!!"
The Stump at Foss Cross, located between Northleach and Cirencester, is looking to support the local community and businesses by opening a drive-thru take away service and farm shop, welcome ’The Stump Shack’.
Due to open from Monday, they’ll be bringing out their old events trailers from 2014, giving it a re-vamp, and opening it as a drive-thru pizzeria, produce shop and breakfast cafe. Perfect if you are looking for something quick to eat, pick up your local groceries or even grab a beer or two whilst keeping your ‘Social Distancing’ in check.
Locals will be able to purchase The Stump's knockout pizza - made by award winning pizza duo, Baz & Fred - soups, sarnies, drinks as well as local produce - without having to leave their car. Order from the car, park up and wait for it to be delivered straight to you!
Keeping the community eating well, ’The Stump Shack’ will be working along side a host of local producers, including Sourdough Revolution, Cackleberry Farm, Deya Brewery, The Cotswold Cider Co., Mimi’s Kitchen, The Extra Virgin Farm and many more. They have even found a way to freeze their own delicious pizzas, so everyone can continue to enjoy them from the comfort of their own home.
Two of The Lucky Onion’s restaurants, The Tavern in Cheltenham and The Hollow Bottom in Guiting Power have launched takeaway options in light of the Coronavirus outbreak.
In a message to all their customers, The Lucky Onion said.
In light of current events we have be working away on some different ways to support our local communities in Northleach, Guiting Power, Minchinhampton and Cheltenham Town.
From 5:30pm tonight we will be offering a take-away service for food and drinks at the Tavern in Cheltenham and the Hollow Bottom in Guiting Power.
We are working towards providing further food and drink options at our other properties in the next 24 hours as well as looking into ways we can re-purpose our business to support the current environment.
We will provide further communication on this as soon as we have it.
Please see all our food and beverage offerings below and gives us a call to order.
We will be taking orders from 5:30pm to 9:30pm every night.
Please note* You will need to collect and pay for your order. Our staff will be vigilant with regard to social distancing.
TAVERN TAKEAWAY MENU (To order Please call 07934 716729)
CHORIZO SCOTH EGG £4.5
ROAST BEETROOTS (v) £8
Whipped feta, dill & dukkah
DUCK & PORCINI MEATBALLS £8.5
Slow cooked tomato sauce
THE MAIN EVENT…
PUY LENTIL & VEGETABLE LASAGNE (v) £14
Baby gem, radish & shallot salad
COTSWOLD WHITE CHICKEN MILANESE £16
Garlic butter, parmesan & chicory salad
HOT BUFFALO WINGS & blue cheese dip £8
SWEET STICKY WINGS sesame & spring onions £8
KOREAN WINGS radish & black sesame £8
MAC ‘N’ CHEESE (v) £6
CHICKEN CAESAR SALAD £11
TAVERN BURGER & fries £10
AMERICAN CHEESE BURGER £13
Streaky bacon & fries
BUTTERMILK FRIED CHICKEN BURGER & fries £10
8oz FLAT IRON (ANGUS) £15.5
8oz ONGLET (ANGUS) £18
8oz SIRLOIN (HEREFORD) £22
10oz RIB-EYE (HEREFORD) £26
SIDES all at £4.50
French fries (v)
Tavern slaw (v)
Chilli cheese fries (add 1.5)
Sweet potato fries (v)
DRINKS MENU AND PRICES:
House White - £18
French Sauv Blanc - £22
House Red - £18
Malbec - £26
House Rose - £18
Studio Rose - £29
Prosecco - £26
Nyetimber - £56
Dunkertons - £4.50
Peroni - £4.50
THE HOLLOW BOTTOM TAKEAWAY MENU (To order, please call 07398 620737)
Vegan Burger and Fries £12.50
Cheese Burger and Fries £12.50
Fish and Chips £14.50
House White - £18
French Sauv Blanc - £22
House Red - £18
Malbec - £26
House Rose - £18
Studio Rose - £29
Prosecco - £26
Nyetimber - £56
Dunkertons - £4.50
Peroni - £4.50
The King's Arms in Prestbury, on the outskirts of Cheltenham, has reopened its doors today by Raymond Blanc's White Brasserie Company.
The pub has undergone an extensive renovation since closing at the end of last year and will offer fresh, seasonal French fare and Great British pub classics.
The pub is steeped in history with parts pf the building dating back to the 14th Century. There has been a huge effort to bring the best of the old pub back to life, reinstating the three fireplaces, restoring original beams and floors and rehanging the front door so it could be open from the High Street for the first time in over two decades.
Take a look for yourself here - kingsarmsprestbury.com
We live in a very weird world, and that's not to mention anything to do with politics. Just this week I found myself defending the presentation of The Swan's pie on twitter to a "chef" who told me that the mash should have been quenilled [sic] with a little jus around the plate and some fresh watercress. I told him he was very wrong, and it's not the 90s anymore. Nobody puts watercress on top of food nowadays do they?
It's been a couple of years since I visited The Swan and lots has changed in that time. Most importantly it has been taken over by Sam and Georgie Pearman, the original founders of The Lucky Onion, with pubs like the brilliant Chequers at Churchill which they still own and the delightful Wheatsheaf at Northleach which they don't.
The pub has changed a bit too. Thinking back it was slightly disjointed but certainly not unpleasant. There was an odd little room if you entered the pub through the door on the road. That has gone has become an extension to the bar area with a few nice tables. The dining room which once had outlandish green walls, green wallpaper, and lots of flowers (the former owner was an interior and floral stylist) now boasts more subtle blues and looks more like a restaurant than someone's living room. There was a roaring fire in the other bar surrounded by the best seats in the house and a lovely room, perfect for celebrations and shoot parties leading out onto the courtyard garden which I imagine would be a nice spot in the summer. The pub has a warmer feel throughout.
It's very rare I order bread, or ever bother to talk about it when I do. However, the Chipping Norton sourdough came with horseradish and dripping butter which is very much worth shouting about.
I'm always torn between dishes and usually leave up to the waiter or waitress to decide for me. It was between the BBQ native prawns, English peas, Chipping Norton nduja and mussels. Without any hesitation, the prawns won. They were huge, messy (the water bowl and napkin both turned the colour your fingers go after eating a packet of Wotsits) and brilliant. I've never had peas with prawns before but it worked, and the nduja-fueled juice at the bottom of the copper bowl was incredibly good to for dipping the spelt toast in.
I wasn't torn for my main. It was 3 degrees outside and I wanted a pie. Chicken and leek or ox cheek and smoked bacon, and choosing the latter wasn't a difficult choice. It arrived standing wonderfully unpretentious on a bed of mash and gravy. It was a thing of beauty and yes Mr Angry Twitter Chef stuck in a different decade, there was no need for spooned mash or watercress. If anything, it could have done with an extra small jug of gravy as the mashed soaked it up like a sponge. The side of squash and cavolo nero, curly kale to you and me, was a decent addition.
This was some of the best pub food I have eaten in quite a while. I have a lot of time for places who have a one main menu fits all for lunch and dinner too.
The Swan will lure locals (there's a special menu in the bar with a £10 dish on every day ) and Londeners alike (there's a station in Ascott where one train a day stops from The Big Smoke). There are also 8 rooms at the pub for anyone wanting to make a couple of days of it which we would obviously highly recommend.
Food pictured is;
Ox Cheek and Smoked Bacon Pie
Crispy Cacklebean Egg
Triple ‘Ham’ Burger, Savoy Slaw, Toffee Apple Sauce, Blue Affine, Tabacco Onions, Alabama Fries
With The November Meeting at Cheltenham just 10 days away, we have found the best places to go after you leave Prestbury Park.
See the full guide HERE.
After an extensive four-year-long renovation, The Harcourt Arms in in the charming Oxfordshire village of Stanton Harcourt has reopened its doors to the public.
Headed up by Olivier Bonte, former GM of No.131 and Alan Gleeson, previously Head Chef of The Lucky Onion’s No.131 and No.38 The Park, The Harcourt Arms will offer exceptional pub food using the finest produce, ingredients sourced through long-standing relationships with ethical suppliers.
The drinks menu will feature beer and wine from small but talented producers across the world with amazing brands such as Greywacke Sauvignon Blanc, William Chase Rose and Chateau Musar alongside Hook Norton Beers, Butcombe and Timothy Taylors Landlord. They will also be serving up delicious cocktails such as Negroni with a twist, proper Espresso Martini and their very own Bloody Mary, allowing guests to order an old favourite or try something new.
Since the renovation, there are an additional 10 individually style en-suite bedrooms, making this 17th-century pub with rooms ideal for both leisure and business needs.
With the local community at its heart, The Harcourt Arms have created The Harcourt Stores, which will offer luxury, artisan produce alongside healthy everyday essentials. A one-stop-shop for locals, there will be fresh coffee, cured and smoked produce,sweet treats and everyday essentials.
The ultimate village pub with a home away from home feel makes it the perfect place to visit.