‘No other spot brings me sweeter memories,’ remarked the poet W. H. Auden about the Lord Crewe Arms. 90 years later, the beauty of this historic bolthole, on the Northumberland/Co Durham border, hasn’t changed.
In the village of Blanchland, the 12th-century building was originally a guest house for Blanchland Abbey. Today, the Calcot Collection runs the show and the company’s clever touches — as seen in Barnsley House — shine through.
The superb food is modern British with big flavours, made using local produce. After cocktails in the barrel-vaulted Crypt Bar, we feasted in the elegant dining room: my favourite dish was the super succulent roasted guinea hen with a garden herb sauce.