Good Pub Guide Recommended
Most people come to this elegantly furnished pub to enjoy the delicious food, but there's a genuinely warm welcome from the friendly staff and a good choice of drinks too. The L-shaped, open-plan bar has a log fire, a civilised yet informal feel and nice little touches such as a rosemary plant and tiny metal buckets of salt and pepper on scrubbed kitchen tables, dog-motif cushions, a screen made up of the sides of wine boxes, and candles in big glass jars. An attractive mix of seats takes in spindlebacks, captain's and chapel chairs (some built into the bay windows) plus the odd cushioned settle, and there are big terracotta floor tiles, lantern-style wall lights, hound, hunting and other photographs, a master of hounds picture and prints of early 19th-c scientists. A second log fire has fender seats to each side and leather chesterfields in front, and there's also a stuffed heron and grouse and daily papers. Butcombe Bitter and Adam Hensons Rare Breed and Flack Manor Double Drop on handpump and good wines by the glass; you can buy wine from their shop too. Outside the front of the building are seats and tables beneath parasols, with more up steps in the raised garden where there's also an outdoor kitchen pavilion. The bedrooms are comfortable and pretty and there's a self-catering cottage opposite.
Good Pub Guide Food
Using the best local produce, the inventive food includes numerous lunchtime dishes that can be ordered as small plates for sharing: rock oysters, lobster gnocchi, devilled duck livers on toast, gruyère fondue with grissini,and pigs head hash with parsley sauce and an egg. Evening choices include portland crab on toast, pigeon salad with bacon, warm fallow deer salad with greens, cod fillet with roast fennel gnocchi, rose veal chops with béarnaise sauce, and puddings such as chocolate and orange terrine and apple doughnuts with toffee sauce and mulled cider.