Great Country Pubs all over the regions, such as The Cat Inn at West Hoathly (Sussex), the Royal Exchange near Bordon (Hamp) and The Wiremill in Lingfield (Surrey) are a tribute to how far food has come in rural pubs.
There is an inclination these days to use the freshest ingredients, sourced locally wherever possible. This incorporates the ideals of the Slow Food Movement (founded in Italy in 1986 as an alternative to fast food) and showcases rustic food with a sophisticated edge based on simple intense flavours. A dish of sausage and mash tastes so much better if the pork comes from a local farm rearing outdoor pigs.
With the revival of this British style with a modern twist in many pub kitchens you are likely to see old favourites returning to the menu such as Sunday roast, steak and ale pie or fish and chips. Others prefer to take a more sophisticated approach, fusing spices and herbs with fresh local produce to create innovative dishes, while others have stuck to their grass roots and do what they do best, simple pub grub using the finest ingredients.
Puddings, too, are something of a traditionally British phenomenon and treats such as spotted dick, treacle sponge or apple pie could well appear on the pub menu. For something lighter locally made ice creams and sorbets are a refreshing alternative. As you would expect, establishments in the coastal counties of the often feature locally caught fish and seafood. Wine lists have grown in status and can provide a vast choice, with some exceptionally good vintages from local vineyards. A full English breakfast is normally served to satisfy the hungry visitor before setting out to explore the local area, which generally consists of bacon, sausages, eggs, black pudding, mushrooms and tomatoes.
Situated in the heart of the picturesque Chiltern Hills, this well-run village pub offers fresh, locally produced food that you really want to go out for, and an excellent range of drinks.
A Lewes gem that you won’t want to miss! Tucked away on the edge of town down by the boat dock overlooking the chalk cliffs, this is the perfect place to finish a hike, particularly as many trails...
This ivy-clad pub comes in the form of a listed Georgian coaching inn, with high ceilings and open fires, dating back to the 1830s.
Inside this authentic village tavern, situated in the heart of the Hampshire countryside, is everything you would associate with the word 'authentic.'
Claiming to be the only pub in the UK called The Polecat, this rather smart rural pub supporting a partial timber frame, dates back to the 1600s and is housed in an attractive former hunting lodge.
The Griffin is a proper local pub with a truly authentic feel that is matched by few other establishments. Family run with great passion, a devoted crowd flock to the well-stocked bar for real ales...
This unsung little gem of a pub, set in a delightful village in the heart of the Chilterns with a vineyard directly behind, brings back fond memories of what a real English country pub should be.
A dreamy Cotswold inn serving award-winning food, the Swan pins its colours to the mast of the flagpole stood outside its doors.
The Old Queens Head sits on the border between the villages of Penn and Tylers Green and is proud to find itself at the heart these two lovely communities.