Part of the urbane Malmaison hotel group, Smithfield’s Fox & Anchor is a pub of contrasts. It’s got six lovely boutique bedrooms and is no stranger to the hundred-quid bottle of wine, yet it’s as reassuringly familiar as a village watering hole. There’s a pub cat, a bar stacked with sausage rolls, and even newspapers to pore over with a pint. Tourists love it, though few make it inside once they’ve photographed the beautiful old exterior. Big ‘City boy’ breakfasts and a ‘classic’ menu of pies, burgers and fish and chips are hugely popular, and there are daily roasts, too – perhaps leg of spring lamb on Wednesday. Classy wines and real ales are available, but it’s the lager tap that gets the welly on a hot day.
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