Our writer pigs out at this stylish canalside inn – officially the best pub in Scotland – where meats are reared or shot locally
Scrawled on the specials board, one dish in particular caught my eye: “Boss-shot pheasant, stuffed with Stornoway black pudding and wrapped with Ayrshire bacon, served with a kale cake, green beans and jus.” The aforementioned pub boss, Graham Bucknall, killed the pheasant at a local shoot, head chef Ben informed me. There was also venison on the menu but, up in my room, I’d been reading about the pub’s pigs, so it had to be the signature pork plate: wrapped loin, rillettes, belly, crackling and baked beans (£19).
“It’s the last of our home-reared Saddleback,” Ben added, “although it’s not strictly Saddleback. The Saddlebacks got friendly with the Gloucester Old Spots …”