The Potting Shed, Crudwell
The Potting Shed lies in a north Wiltshire village rather than the Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire territories of the Cotswolds, but it’s most definitely worth driving south for. The focus is all things seasonal and local, and the menu changes monthly to reflect this, as well as the produce from the two-acre garden.
The Sunday roasts are some of the best in the area but it’s also worth trying the main menu – highlights might include a black pudding scotch egg with mustard mayonnaise, a fluffy smoked mackerel pate with sourdough toast or the crispiest beer battered fish and chips. Keep an eye on the specials board for the fish of the day too. The charming Rectory hotel (where you’ll find The Potting Shed’s sister restaurant) is just down the road and is worth spending a night or two, so might as well make a long weekend out of it.
The Lamb Inn, Shipton-Under-Wychwood
With the success of The Bell Inn comes this new pub-with-rooms from the same owners. And it might just be one of the biggest Cotswolds openings of 2021, with bedrooms that are as smart as the menu. Peter Creed and Tom Noest are known for working their magic on derelict country inns that are in desperate need of a facelift. Here they’ve redone the space with a proper standing bar, mismatched picture frames and a large garden out back. The menu is similar to its big sister (devilled kidneys on toast, juicy burgers) but this time with a French twist – escargots and crispy frogs’ legs, bavette-steak tartare with game chips, confit duck frites with zingy aioli. Oh, and a must-order tarte tatin for pudding.