The Cotswolds is a region of England well known for its natural larder. There is an abundance of local agriculture which means that the quality of food in the area is outstanding. Famed for its cream teas and sweet treats, there is a whole lot more to the gastronomy of the Cotswolds.
In this blog post, we will discuss some of the great local produce to look out for, as well as give you some ideas of places to eat while you are out on our trips.
As well as an extremely high quality of meat and veg in the area, there are also several local specialities that you should keep an eye out for when walking in the Cotswolds. Cheese is an obvious place to start. The famous Single and Double Gloucester cheeses are produced in the Cotswold and very easy to find. Both have achieved Protected Designation of Origin status, as well as the Gloucester Old Spot Pork, which you will find being served in many establishments throughout the region. Stinking Bishop is the other cheese of note. What it lacks in the name department, it makes up for in the flavour. The Cotswold Cheese Company in Moreton-on-Marsh is definitely worth a visit if your itinerary takes you through there.
There are local farmers markets in most villages and towns, showcasing the best of local produce and everyone is keen to source as much local food as possible. In recent years, this has extended to the drinks industry, with a top class Cotswold Gin and the Cotswold Brew Co. producing some outstanding beers that predate the craft-beer explosion in the UK.
Broadway Deli – This delightful deli/cafe/shop exemplifies the fresh local produce available in the Cotswolds. Sandwiches to die for (stock up before your days walk!) and so much choice in their shop that you could conceivably leave with a very heavy rucksack!
Russells – This is a high-quality restaurant, which is a little on the pricier end of the market, but well worth it. Such care and attention have been given to the aforementioned local produce that you are left feeling that you have not only had a fantastic meal, but an experience to go with it. If high class is not what you fancy after a day on the trail, you can pop next door to Russells Fish n chip shop, where the same loving attention is given to the humble fish n chips. A total result.
Tisanes – This is the Macs Adventure staff favourite for high-tea in Broadway. If you closed your eyes and imagined what a classic Cotswolds tea-room would be, I think it would be Tisanes. Honest, baking with little frill, but heaps of flavour. The welcome is warm and the atmosphere convivial.
Cotswold Food Store – Another great place to stock up for your packed lunch. While there are many items on the menu that would see you sitting in too, the Cotswold Food Store is pie heaven. Any savoury pastry good we sampled here was truly outstanding, so sit in, or take away, you are sure of an incredible gastronomic experience.
Black Bear Inn– Pub Grub at its finest! The Black Bear promises to source its food from as close to the pub as possible, with much of it coming from a farm just a mile away. It has all the hearty hallmarks of excellent pub food, but with enough of a twist to elevate it into a fantastic dining experience.
Bakery-on-the-Water – Baking paradise and definitely a pre-walk stop to get those lunches sorted out. The love that the staff here show their bread is almost indecent! It produces some of the best bread we have ever eaten and no only this, but they know how to fill it, creating some of the best sandwiches in the country.
The Rose Tree – Sitting right on the river, the Rose Tree is a delightful, friendly little restaurant with food that matches the welcome. The portions are generous and made with love and creative flair, while still keeping the pricing affordable.
The Bakers Arms – It doesn’t get more quintessential English pub than this. Great, honest pub food at prices which mean you can afford to indulge in a couple of the fantastic range of ales on offer.
Huxleys – An unassuming, olde-worlde facade hides a gastronomic treat inside. This med-inspired cafe/bar is riddled with sumptuous treats. From their high-quality antipasti, which has been lovingly picked out, to their delicate pasta and artisan burgers, Huxleys is that potent combination of finesse and full bellies. Best coffee in town? It’s a tough call, but probably the right one.
Hare & Hounds – High quality, well thought out food, in a contemporary, fresh pub environment. The Hare & Hounds is in a location that has views that match the quality and service on display in the pub. While it may be a little outside Bath, it is well worth the effort, and there are several walks around the area for walking off those extra pounds gained from the sumptuous and generous portions.
Ring o Bells – This is where art and food combine to produce pure beauty on a plate. Dozens of outstanding small plates which have all been created not only with the flavours in mind, but also the style. You will laugh and marvel at the plate of food before you, before cleaning the whole thing and wondering if you have room for just one more.