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From the moment you step through the door into the fireside ‘snug’ and the convivial bar, it’s hard not to be seduced by the shabby-chic charms of this relaxed, 15th-century coaching inn. Being set in the heart of one of the Cotswolds’ most picture-perfect honey-stoned villages certainly helps too. Recently refurbished, its flagstone floors, mismatched antique armchairs and soothing Farrow & Ball colours are a comfortable blend of traditional and contemporary. The same goes for the food, giving pub classics a modern twist, incorporating plenty of Asian flavours. Starters might be squid ink tagliatelle with lobster and a lemongrass and coriander sauce, or beetroot, whisky and fennel-cured salmon with horseradish mousse. Sensibly-priced mains could include Wagyu beef brisket (imported from Japan) served with wild mushroom and beef jus, while for dessert try the pear and apple tarte Tatin with cinnamon ice cream. Choose between the bar or the quieter restaurant, although the scrubbed wooden tables and grub are the same. A walled garden and seven spruce rooms complete the country idyll package.
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