The Clarence Tavern, Stoke Newington
The Clarence is well placed for a stroll through Abney Park, one of London’s “Magnificent Seven” cemeteries, with its moss-clad gravestones and decaying chapel (currently being renovated thanks to the National Lottery Heritage Fund). Under the same owners as the pioneering Anchor & Hope in Waterloo, the Clarence has opted for a vibe that’s similarly low-key, with stripped wooden floors, simple tables and a classic late-1990s gastropub feel.
The menu, which changes daily, might include grilled sardines with black olive tapenade, creamy burrata with chilli, smoked mackerel paté with pickled cucumber, or the signature medium-rare onglet with the best-ever chips, horseradish and watercress. A Sunday chalkboard of specials offers a mixed seafood stew, whole gilthead bream, or slow-cooked lamb to share between two or three. Sets you up for a post-prandial snifter at Irish watering hole the Auld Shillelagh over the road.
Mains from £16, clarencetavern.com
The Royal Oak, Borough
This old-school Southwark boozer serves proper pub grub, or “comforting classics”, as the Royal Oak’s website prefers to call it. There are homemade sausage rolls, ham, egg and chips, doorstop sandwiches (if it’s on, try the salt beef), a choice of pies (always including a vegetarian option) and generous Sunday roasts (beef, gammon, chicken breast in bacon, smoked tofu), all done to ludicrously high standards, considering the prices.
It’s one of only three pubs in the capital owned by Sussex brewery Harvey’s, so this sympathetically restored Victorian corner house is also a bit of a mecca for the real-ale brigade. There is plenty to explore on the doorstep: it’s handy for Tate Modern, Borough Market and the South Bank.
Mains from £13, royaloaklondon.co.uk
King William IV, Mickleham, Surrey
After a hike on the steep paths around Mickleham Downs and Box Hill, the sight of this ivy-clad boozer, built in 1790, is ambrosial. While the nearby Running Horses is a flashier food destination, the King Bill on the Hill – as it is charmingly known – makes it explicit on a chalkboard that it’s not a gastropub, instead priding itself on “selling fresh food made from scratch”. The menu ranges from seafood to Sunday roasts: recommended is butter-soft calamari in a light tempura, served on rich lemon mayo with julienned cucumber.
A rustic treat after a walk is the mammoth ploughman’s board, piled high with homemade treacle-glazed ham, pork pie and three cheeses. Roasts include 28-day aged Surrey Hills beef and a vegan option. For a romantic aspect, bag the tiny front room, while the chunky brick fireplace in the back lounge, decorated with pewter jugs, has a proper blaze in winter. And on a blue-sky day, the pretty outdoor terraces, with their unparalleled views, are paradise itself.
Mains from £14, thekingwilliamiv.com
The Mistley Thorn, Manningtree, Essex
This is the infamous site where 17th-century “witchfinder general” Matthew Hopkins was commissioned to seek out his prey, sending almost 200 “witches” to the gallows. Fast-forward to the present day and the current building, dating back to 1723, has been run by Californian Sherri Singleton for nearly 20 years, winning acclaim for its locally sourced menu.
The panelled interior is decked out as a New England-style hideaway. Real passion is evident in the dishes – there’s a cookery school next door – whether it’s the house speciality of mussels, hearty roasts or warming seafood stews; other highlights are griddled scallops with seaweed butter and, of course, a local Mersea oyster or two. Best of all, the lunch set menu is £21.95 for two courses every day – even on Sundays. Afterwards, hike along The Walls, the waterside stretch to Manningtree, past pastel cottages and the neoclassical Mistley Towers.
Mains from £14.50, mistleythorn.co.uk
George & Heart, Margate, Kent
This summer, Margate, especially around Pride weekend, was busier than ever; off season it can at least breathe a little, but still offers the cavernous Turner Contemporary and the impressive new Carl Freedman Gallery on Union Crescent. The George & Heart is a chilled LGBTQ-friendly pub with rooms, atmospherically restored to its 18th-century coach-house roots, with a plant-filled roadside courtyard or cosy banquettes in the stained-glass interior.
As well as a midweek residency from the Sicilian Pasta Slut, there’s a gastropub-style menu at weekends that, on Sundays, is almost entirely roast-focused: rare beef is pink and tender, with veg including deliciously unctuous cauliflower cheese, sticky-sweet roast carrots, al dente greens and crispy onions. Vegans can order a wild mushroom nut roast, and there’s pan-fried sea bass with white wine, lemon and samphire for pescatarians.
Sunday lunch from £15.50, georgeandheart.com
The Crown, Hastings, East Sussex
Fact: the two foodie boozers in Hastings & St Leonards are at opposite ends of town. While hip St Leonards punches hard with its acclaimed gastropub the Royal, the Crown – an independent freehouse in an attractive corner of the old town – makes a more picturesque lunch spot. It’s on All Saints Street, which, as well as being handy for the Hastings Contemporary gallery, is one of the town’s most interesting stretches, home to its oldest house, Shovells, dating back to the 15th century. Inside the pub are nooks aplenty, with local art on the walls and a dog or two slumped on the floor. If it’s fine, the pavement terrace is a great place to sip a Sussex ale. There’s no Sunday menu as such, but favourites include a beer-battered fish-finger sarnie with coleslaw and chips (£9) or tandoori masala pollack. Plant-based options are also strong, such as spiced butternut squash with hazelnut and garlic puree and dukkah.
Mains from £14, thecrownhastings.co.uk
West and south-west England
The Bell & Crown, Zeals, Wiltshire
A 200-year-old coaching inn at the tripoint of Wiltshire, Somerset and Dorset, the Bell & Crown still serves as a handy stop-off for anyone trundling the A303 between London and the south-west, as well as visitors to nearby National Trust favourite Stourhead. Flagstone floors and candlelit corners add a dash of atmosphere while pizza nights and a choice between pricier mains and more affordable “pub bangers” have won over regulars.
Creative types in the kitchen prepare fennel, radish and orange side salads as skilfully as steaks. Sunday lunch steers an equally assured course between posh fish and chips and the whole hog: try smoked mackerel kedgeree scotch egg followed by roast beef with all the trimmings, and dark chocolate delice.
Mains from £16, bellandcrown.com
Rhiannon Batten, co-author of the new Rustle Up recipe book
The Bull Inn, Totnes, Devon
There are plenty of Devon pubs serving classic Sunday lunches (among them the excellent Five Bells at Clyst Hydon). But what if you don’t fancy ruffles of beef and yorkshire pudding glossy with gravy? Opened in 2019 by Geetie Singh-Watson – organic pub pioneer, married to Riverford farmer Guy Singh-Watson – the Bull Inn puts an ethical spin on gastropub dining, with organic, veg-first cooking.
It’s also supplier-led, meaning a menu that changes in real time, rather than daily or weekly, and the same food for Sunday lunch that you might eat on a Wednesday evening, served at circular tables. Small plates include mushrooms with whipped tahini, chilli oil and dukkah, and venison carpaccio with pickled beetroots, stilton and walnuts, or mains of burnt cabbage with onion caramel, chard, Sharpham Rustic cheese and picada.
Mains from £16, bullinntotnes.co.uk
The Cotley Inn, Wambrook, Somerset
It would be easy to think the Cotley Inn was voted VisitEngland’s Pub of the Year 2022 on looks alone. An old stone farmhouse on the Cotley estate, with painterly views of the Blackdown Hills, it’s lit up in autumn by a fiery Virginia creeper and ringed by inviting-looking footpaths. The menu makes much of the surroundings, with beef and lamb sourced from the estate farm and homegrown rare-breed pork, chicken and veg.
After a hike up the valley for Sunday lunch, warm up with a fireside mulled cider followed by Cotley estate ruby red beef or slow-cooked pork belly, both served with veg, yorkshire pudding and “proper” gravy. It’s also strong on game, with local venison, duck, pheasant, rabbit and partridge making regular appearances in autumn and winter.
Mains from £16, cotleyinnwambrook.co.uk
The Standard Inn, Gerrans, Cornwall
Flagstones, open fires, candlelight and walls painted in mellow mustard and ink. Sound like your dream pub? It did to Simon Stallard and Jemma Glass. Having honed their brand of big-flavoured, low-fuss cooking at The Hidden Hut on Porthcurnick beach, the couple recently took over the nearby Standard Inn, reinstating those floors and fires and getting busy with the Farrow & Ball.
On summer Sundays the garden hosts bottomless barbecue lunches but in autumn these switch to a more robust, traditional affair. After a stride around the village, or along the beach, slow-roast beef or Cornish sole served with honey-roasted parsnips with sesame seed, burnt leek gratin, roast swede and kale from nearby Roseland Market Garden are very welcome. Save space for a scoop of seasonal soft-serve, or caramelised rice pudding with local Kea plums.
Mains from £18, standardinn.co.uk
Higher Buck, Waddington, Lancashire
A huddle of handsome historic buildings bisected by a gurgling brook, and a frequent holder of the title of Lancashire Best Kept Village, Waddington is very pretty. Better still, it has three pubs. At the polished Higher Buck, chef-owner Michael Heathcote delivers technically rigorous dishes while maintaining a warm country-pub buzz.
Expect a friendly welcome, Thwaites beers and a crowd-pleasing kids’ menu, plus cooking that, even with pub staples such as smoked bacon and Lancashire cheese burger or beer-battered haddock and chips, is consistently elevated by Heathcote’s assured touch – and high-quality ingredients from the surrounding Ribble Valley. After eight years, Heathcote’s cheddar soufflé, king prawn bhajis and crispy duck and chorizo salad have become classics among the Higher Buck’s many regulars. A yomp in the nearby Trough of Bowland or a walk around the grounds of Clitheroe Castle will sharpen appetites.
Mains from £16, higherbuck.com
Hawkshead Brewery, Staveley, Cumbria
If your perfect Sunday lunch involves a pint, why not head to the source: a brewery? Hawkshead started life in the early days of the microbrewing boom, a tiny operation in a stone barn run by former BBC foreign correspondent Alex Brodie. He had decided to convert a lifelong love of pubs and real ale into a career move – much nicer than having last orders called on you in Iran (which expelled him in 1980).
Once up and running, the brewery moved to larger premises in Staveley (between Kendal and Windermere), where it now has a beer hall serving the full range of hand-pumped beers and ales plus a selection of classy cheeseboards, pies and cured meats with crackers or tortillas. If alcohol at lunch isn’t your thing, there’s also an excellent 0.5% Helles lager.
Cheeseboards from £12, hawksheadbrewery.co.uk
The Cholmondeley Arms, Malpas, Cheshire
With its smartly painted gables and well-pointed brickwork the “Chum”, as it’s known, looks every inch the architectural equivalent of a respectable headteacher. So it’s no surprise to learn it was once a schoolhouse. Converted into a pub in the 1980s, it now continues the pedagogic tradition, serving nostalgic puddings such as rolypoly with custard, and helping customers learn about good gin – it boasts 366 varieties of that very English herbal remedy.
Food has strong local connections: seasonal game from nearby shoots, and vegetables, eggs and ice-creams from Cheshire farms. Sunday lunch always features a 28-day aged sirloin with yorkshire pudding and gravy.
With such a fine feast on offer, it’s handy that the pub has six guest bedrooms across the road in the Headmasters House.
Mains from £15, doubles from £135 B&B, cholmondeleyarms.co.uk
The Bay Horse, Great Broughton, North Yorkshire
Fringed by neatly clipped hedges and partially wrapped in ivy, the Bay Horse is a traditional country pub. Inside, things are properly homely, with low, wood-beamed ceilings, rustic furniture, patterned carpets and the alluring waft of the home-cooked roasts that folk from Middlesbrough, Stokesley and the surrounding areas make weekly pilgrimages to eat.
Choose from beef, lamb, chicken, pork or nut roast with fist-sized homemade yorkshire puds, crispy roast potatoes and mash, plus seasonal veg and pan gravy. Hefty Sunday dinners are usually washed down with a pint of cask ale and rounded off with a classic dessert – the chef’s banoffee (£6.50) is a winner.
The Bay Horse caters for kids, hikers, bikers and birthdays, and its friendly staff always try their best to squeeze everyone in, though it’s better to book in advance. Clay Bank is a perfect post-lunch destination. A car park on the left offers knockout views of Middlesbrough’s Matterhorn, Roseberry Topping. Cycling and hiking routes sprout off here, too.
Mains from £14.95, thebayhorse-greatbroughton.co.uk
The Beehive, Whitley Bay, North Tyneside
This stunning 18th-century former coaching inn, with wooden floors, welcoming staff and open fireplaces, is an idyllic spot for a laid-back lunch. Things are warm and cosy inside but there is also an outdoor dining spot: the Woodshed, a large gazebo space, is open year-round, and there’s a large beer lawn and a secret garden that’ll keep the kids occupied until lunchtime. The tender beef and pork mixed roast is superb, and comes with crispy roasties cooked in goose fat, veg, yorkshire pudding and gravy. Occasionally there’s a fish or pie option on the specials board, both worthy of investigation. Whitley Bay’s golden beach is a stroll away via Saint Mary’s Lighthouse – visible from the Beehive on a clear day. Sundays at this lovely pub can be chock-a-block, so book a week or two in advance.
Mains from £14.95, beehiveearsdon.co.uk
Hope & Union, Stockton-on-Tees, County Durham
Hope & Union is an unassuming pub in an unassuming place, sandwiched between Stockton’s high street and the River Tees, in an area not known for its culinary delights – but this little micropub punches well above its weight. Its bar, clad in emerald tiles and embossed with its name, is lined with craft ales, spirits and blackboards listing the current guest beers. The atmosphere is relaxed and the decor industrial: exposed lightbulbs, scaffold pole tables and mismatched chairs.
Sunday roasts are served from 12-4pm and come with all the usual trimmings. After 4pm, the regular menu resumes, including the local delicacy, Teesside’s famously indulgent chicken parmo – breaded chicken, bechamel sauce and a mountain of cheese. Staff are chirpy and no bookings are needed.
Within walking distance there are films at Arc, an arts and culture hub, and the independent Georgian Theatre – a music venue that has welcomed bands including Arctic Monkeys.
Mains from £11.50, on Facebook TN
Midlands and East Anglia
The One Bull, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk
One of a small family of boozers owned by Brewshed, a craft brewery in Bury St Edmunds, the One Bull is a sparsely decorated town pub that lets its food and drink do the talking. The dedicatedly seasonal (and, where possible, local) Sunday lunch menu changes each week; currently it’s both seeing out the summer and welcoming autumn in with dishes like apricot bread and butter pudding.
Roasts come in the form of Blythburgh pork, beef sirloin and salt-baked celeriac for meat avoiders, all served with yorkshire pud, roasties, seasonal veg and gravy. There’s local fish too: Brewshed-battered haddock and chips, or plaice with samphire from the Suffolk coast. The cheeseboard does East Anglia proud with the likes of Suffolk blue from Creeting Saint Mary and smoked dapple from north Norfolk.
Drinks include great beers but also wines from Brewshed’s own shop, Vino Gusto. This is a menu that knows how to please a crowd and caters to many tastes. It’s no secret that Suffolk is a trove of good food, and with Lavenham, Woodbridge and Aldeburgh all within an hour’s drive, this won’t be the only delicious meal visitors will have.
Mains from £16, theonebull.co.uk
Sculthorpe Mill, Sculthorpe, Norfolk
Given north Norfolk’s many attractions, the village of Sculthorpe is unlikely to be first on a visitor’s agenda. It’s just off the A148 near Fakenham, between the bougie west coast and the birdwatching havens and seaside towns further east. But it’s precisely this location which makes Sculthorpe Mill, the village pub which was recently given a beautiful makeover, a useful gem.
Handy, too, that it happens to serve some of the best Sunday lunches in East Anglia. Roasts are served with a twist (currently, Norfolk ham with duck egg salad and pineapple pickle; leg of lamb with Norfolk peer potato salad, broad beans and anchovies) and the menu showcases the county’s lush ingredients: Sheringham lobster, smoked fish from Staithe, Wensum white goat’s cheese and, of course, Norfolk ales including local brewery Duration’s American pale.
All dietary requirements are amply catered for, as are ages (the kids’ menu got the thumbs up from my lot). If you need an excuse to visit, go paddling in the ford next to this idyllic 18th-century watermill, or stop by on your way to the beach or an exhibition at nearby Houghton Hall. For me, though, lunch alone is alluring enough.
Mains from £15.50, sculthorpemill.uk
The Boot, Repton, Derbyshire
This south Derbyshire village has a curious campus feel thanks to the famous private school among its ancient buildings. The Boot, originally a 17th-century coaching inn, is simultaneously a lively locals’ bar and an upmarket restaurant-with-rooms.Notably, the kitchen treats pub classics (such as a chicken burger gilded with gochujang and kimchi) with the same fastidiousness as the more refined dishes (ox cheek with bourguignon dressing and creamed potatoes, or salt-baked celeriac with a mussel ragout and nori), that feature on chef Matt Allsopp’s tasting menu.
In the bar, expect to find beers from local breweries such as Derby’s Dancing Duck and the Boot’s own range of ales, now made at Little Brewing Company, including the citrussy pale Clod Hopper. Nearby are gentle woodland trails around Foremark Reservoir or the park and gardens at Calke Abbey.
Mains from £15.95, thebootatrepton.co.uk
The Bull & Swan, Stamford, Lincolnshire
In the quaint town of Stamford, this pub with rooms a short walk from the Burghley estate – with its Elizabethan manor house, orangery, rose garden and annual horse trials – has a reassuringly short Sunday menu. It’s famous for its runny Scotch eggs served with English mustard, and starters will also include a seasonal terrine. Even the bread and butter is special: a whole loaf from Hambleton Bakery by Rutland Water nature reserve (also worth a visit).
Carnivores and pescatarians will be very happy with local Grasmere Farm pork, lamb shank and a 28-day poacher burger, not to mention proper fish and chips (batter made with beer from local brewery Grainstore). Best of all is the Sunday roastingpot – a big family-style lunch for four (£60) or six (£85). The Bull and Swan is a celebration of pub tradition: hearty food, real ale and cosy surroundings.
Mains from £16, hillbrookehotels.co.uk
Bunch of Grapes, Pontypridd, Mid Glamorgan
This town pub on a terraced street is well off the tourist trail in a glorious, hilly landscape frequented only by locals and offers a taste of real Wales, 2020s style. High above the valley is Llanwynno hamlet, with skyline trackways for stunning views over what used to be coal country. Nearer at hand is Eglwysilan mountain, with its remote, medieval church and views down towards Cardiff.
Both will sharpen appetites for the Bunch of Grapes’ imaginative modern menu, with many a nod to traditional Welsh working-class fare. House-made sourdough with fermented seaweed butter, could be followed with pork belly in Welsh cider and smoked paprika jus, and washed down with a local cask ale or a Belgian beer.
The Boat, Erbistock, near Wrexham
This riverside pub in the quiet Maelor region, a mile or so on foot from the English border (though several by car, such is the grandeur of the River Dee around here) has made a name for itself as a pub that cares about food. It distills its own gin and offers a well-curated cheese selection that includes the delectable Ashlynn goat’s cheese as well as heavenly Gorwydd caerphilly.
What makes this place special, though – apart from the golden stone, traditional decor and riverside garden – are the affordable Sunday roasts: half a chicken, with all the sides and a yorkshire, for £15.45, or beef for £16.45. It’s also near the celebrated delights of Llangollen, the Dee valley, and the lesser-known Ceiriog valley, with its cycling and hiking trails.
Mains from £13.95, theboataterbistock.co.uk
The Griffin, Dale, Pembrokeshire
Boasting what may well be the best sea-wall bar in Wales, in the country’s sunniest village (yes, 1,750 sunshine hours a year), this is the place to come for seafood. A late-season swim at Marloes, West Dale or Sandy Haven beaches can be followed with lunch featuring produce of those same waters. The Griffin’s seafood menu changes daily, but features everything from sea bream to scallops, paired with local leeks, new potatoes and samphire.
Mains from £18, griffindale.co.uk
Hare & Hounds, Aberthin, near Cowbridge, Vale of Glamorgan
The stated aim of this establishment is to showcase its own brand of “regional Welsh cooking”, which it does with aplomb. Running its own bakery, kitchen garden and smallholding, this place reflects well on Wales’s own home county, the Vale of Glamorgan. The Sunday menu currently opens with Pembrokeshire oyster, pickled cucumber, apple and dill or venison loin with tomatoes and aged teifi cheese. To follow are shoulder or neck of lamb for two to share or Welsh wild sea bass with courgette and pickled mussels, all in front of a log fire.
The pub is on the outskirts of the old market town of Cowbridge, with a wealth of history and culture to discover, from St Brynach’s 12th-century church with medieval wall paintings, to Old Beaupre castle standing guard over fields and cliffs five miles away.
Mains from £16, hareandhoundsaberthin.com
The Ox, Edinburgh
This pub in Edinburgh’s East New Town has been serving Sunday roasts since it opened in 2014 and “spotted a gap in the market”. There are still very few places in Edinburgh specialising in Sunday lunch – and clearly there is a demand. The Ox’s usual diverse menu is available all week, but on a Sunday most diners go for the roast – beef, pork belly or veggie nut with big yorkshire puds, triple-fried chips, green beans and cauliflower cheese. It now does almost 200 covers, so that was some gap in the market.
Sunday lunch is served from noon until nine, booking essential. Many locals head for Stockbridge’s Sunday market 20 minutes to the west and strollers might head downhill to Tesco to pick up the cycle and walking path to the shores of Leith and Newhaven.
Roast from £14.50, theoxedinburgh.com
Peter Irvine, author of Scotland the Best
Meikleour Arms, Perthshire
The 30-metre high Meikleour Beech Hedge – a Perthshire landmark and recognised in the Guinness World Records – is especially impressive in autumn. Down the road behind it, the Meikleour Arms is the kind of civilised village pub you might find in the Cotswolds and perfect for a Sunday lunch. Both the pub and hotel (there are rooms in the building, in an annexe and a walled garden, doubles from £135) are personally run by the Mercer Nairne family. As much as possible is sourced on their estate and farm: the meat for the roasts, the fish, the vegetables and, at this time of year, the mushrooms. The River Tay runs through it, which visitors can fish in, though they may just prefer to stroll for up to two miles by the river after lunch or go for an amble in the Carsie Woods.
Mains from £15.95, meikleourarms.co.uk
The Barley Bree, Muthill, Perthshire
Fabrice Bouteloup is a Frenchman who settled in one of the most beautiful parts of central Scotland, taking over a pub on the main street in tiny Muthill near Crieff and turning it into a bistro par excellence. Sunday lunch in all its English and Scottishness is a speciality – the roast beef, the yorkshire pudding cuit à point. Though you’re through Muthill itself before you’ve checked your Google maps, there are good nearby options for working up an appetite or walking off the tarte tatin.
A waymarked walk starts across the road (to the left down Wardside Road) along the unassuming but delightful River Earn. Up a tree-lined drive two miles down the main road towards Crieff, the parterred gardens of Drummond Castle are amazing in any season. Barley Bree is also a hotel, with six cosy inexpensive rooms upstairs.
Mains from £13.95, barleybree.com
Kinloch Lodge, Isle of Skye
This year Kinloch, on the Sleat peninsula in the south of Skye, celebrates 50 years as a hotel – but it’s been the seat of the Macdonalds for a lot longer. Lady Claire Macdonald established it as one of Scotland’s first country house hotels, and made it a gastronomic destination. Her irresistible puds became famous, and she went on to write 23 cookbooks.
Kinloch Lodge is now run by her daughter, Isabella, and its Sunday lunch has become a drop-in treat for locals and passing visitors. Chef Jordan Webb sources as much as possible locally: seafood from the waters at the bottom of the garden, venison from the surrounding hills, veg from the polytunnel out back.
Two courses £32, three courses £36, kinloch-lodge.co.uk
The Morning Star, Belfast
Under the friendly eye of James McAllister, whose mum and dad ran it before him, the Morning Star is the glamorous but frayed old queen of Belfast pubs, with a huge ground floor bar and a lounge with dining tables upstairs. It lies up an “entry” like a misplaced palace. Belfast’s entries are narrow cobbled alleyways linking the bigger streets – this one is between the High Street and Ann Street. They are the vestiges of an older port city, as narrow as the lanes in Marrakech’s medina – and just as atmospheric. The pub sources seriously good vegetables, seafood and meats, all locally, some from its own garden, and the menu changes according to what’s available. One winner is prawn boxty – lush Kilkeel langoustines in a fiery tomato sauce served with a traditional potato-based pancake. If the oysters are on, a half-dozen make an unbeatable lunch with a pint of stout.
Mains from £13.95, themorningstarbar.co.uk
Joris Minne, restaurant critic, the Belfast Telegraph
The Brewer’s House, Donaghmore, County Tyrone
The food culture of Ireland took its time to get out into the country, but when Ciaran McCausland came home after a stint in London, he knew what to do with his family’s staid old pub – put in a new kitchen and hire some good staff.
Among crowd-pleasers such as fiery chicken wings, soups and burgers are fresh Strangford mussels; roast saddle of monkfish with a cassoulet of butter beans sexed up with ’nduja and madeira; goat’s cheese tart; and rump of Sperrins lamb with mint risotto. Chef Tommy Mangan watches the seasons like a weatherman and matches the menus to it every couple of months. Close to the Sperrin Mountains, this is an area popular with cyclists and hikers, who as winter comes are glad to find this place and put their boots up to the fire.
Mains from £16.50, thebrewershouse.com