Pub Kitchen Gardens to Explore
25 April 2018
Allotments and raised beds in the kitchen gardens at our foodie inns will soon be bursting with summer fruits and a rich variety of vegetables, salad leaves and fresh herbs. Our pick of the bunch, where you are actively encouraged to explore the stunning kitchen gardens and, perhaps, spot the chefs harvesting the produce for your lunch, include an eco-haven in the wilds of Northumberland with its own market garden; three fabulous Michelin starred pubs with rooms; a stylishly refurbished Lancashire local with an ‘Incredible Edible’ garden; a well-loved Rutland village inn and best pit stop on the A1 for miles; a culinary treasure on the beautiful Welsh Borders; a hidden foodie haven in Hampshire with its own small holding; a wisteria clad Wiltshire stone inn oozing rustic charm; and an Oxfordshire thatched gem with sublime modern food.
Here you will find a lovingly refurbished rural gem slumbering in a sleepy Oxfordshire village with a quirky, cool, individual design, a chilled vibe, and sublime seasonal food. Chef Leon Smith who has bags of experience and a passion for foraging wild ingredients, makes good use of the pub’s own kitchen garden alongside the network of farmers and artisan producers on the doorstep – his innovative seasonal food is delicious – don’t miss his barbecued garden salad with Baron Bigod custard, finished with onion ash, loads of foraged & garden herbs and the house BBQ vinaigrette made with apple molasses & charcoal oil!
Sustainability is intrinsically woven into every aspect of how Richard and Dee Slade operate the Battlesteads, a traditional Northumbrian stone inn in the heart of Hadrian’s Wall country. Their commendable carbon neutral aims, which include their own poly-tunnels and beautifully tended raised beds that yield bumper crops of fresh vegetables and fruits, are clear indicators of a caring, thoughtful approach to all aspects of inn-keeping.
Glen Duckett’s unassuming roadside pub has been stylishly revamped and now features a smart new Orangery dining room, quirky, luxurious rooms, great food and fabulous views. On a good day, head for the 1-acre garden, where you’ll find a chicken run (your breakfast eggs couldn’t be fresher) and a prolific ‘Incredible Edible’ small-holding where vegetables, leaves and herbs for your dinner are grown.
The isolated spruced up Griffin Inn is firmly on the Welsh culinary map (the food is sublime) and renowned as a destination inn for those looking for a brilliant bolthole in the Welsh borders. Cosy, rambling rooms demonstrate an artful, understated sense of style and the atmosphere is totally laid back with a vibrant buzz. Outside, take a stroll through the verdant kitchen garden and see what’s growing and likely to be on the day’s menu.
A legend in its own lunchtime, the Olive Branch is renowned for its food and how it champions local suppliers. The interior remains true to the inn’s 17th century roots as a cosy village inn with 6 gorgeous bedrooms in the Beech House. In the paddock next door you will find the chickens and ducks who provide breakfast eggs and a serious veg patch and polytunnel with a myriad of year round vegetables, salads and herbs – it’s the best A1 pit stop for miles.
Set back from the village lane, festooned with wisteria and surround by glorious gardens, where fragrant lilacs and cottage roses border manicured lawns, this former 17th-century working farm remains a true country pub. And reflecting its history as a working farm, the current owners take local and seasonal produce to mean just that – having added 6 raised vegetable beds, an upcycled green house and plenty of herb boxes on the Terrace, everything you eat will be local and seasonal.
James and Kate Mackenzie have held a Michelin star at the Pipe and Glass South Dalton since 2010, so you can expect high standards across the board at their handsome 17th-century country inn out in the East Yorkshire Wolds. A recent renovation of the garden has resulted in (as well as adding wonderful alfresco dining spaces), an entirely edible garden – everything grown is edible, literally! Also, don’t miss the herbarium with an innovative living wall – you will never have to worry about food miles here!
Set the Sat Nav to find this 18th-century thatched pub hidden away in rolling downland on the edge of Salisbury Plain. It will be worth it, as the Red Lion is a culinary oasis, awarded a Michelin Star in 2013, and chef Guy Manning keeps West Berkshire pigs at the top of the garden, where you will also find the raised vegetable beds and greenhouse and, if you’re lucky, see the chefs picking leaves and herbs for the delicious lunch menu.
You know you’ve landed somewhere special when you spot the thatch on the long, low roof of the smartly whitewashed Star Inn, a 15th century pub perched on the edge of the North Yorks Moors. Chef-owner Andrew Pern won the first Michelin star for Yorkshire and has been delighting us ever since. There’s an immaculate kitchen garden out back featuring a rustic chef’s table smack in the middle of overflowing vegetable beds.
Lost down lanes in peaceful north Hampshire countryside, this former hunting lodge has been wowing local diners for the past decade thanks to the passion and enthusiasm of owners Jason King and Simon Page. Foodies beat a path to the door for Jason’s daily chalkboard menus, which offer plenty of interest and imagination. The pub has a beautiful garden, with raised vegetable beds and herbs and vegetables are picked fresh from the pub’s polytunnel, their bees make the honey and eggs are collected from the rare breed chickens that free-range in the field behind the pub. Idyllic!
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