The Star Inn at Harome is one of those ‘foodie’ pubs that you will only find in the English countryside.
The kind where a thatched roof presides over a bar with wooden beams, low-ceilings and tables in nooks and crannies. Where there’s a local sneaking crisps to his dog in the front bar. Where visitors come to taste celebrated cuisine from a well-known chef, served in a modern, but well-matched, dining room. Where the charm of a region’s history creates an atmosphere that warms the heart.
I visited the Star Inn at Harome, in the North Yorkshire Moors, with family in Spring to celebrate my mother’s birthday. This is a place that is special enough, but relaxed enough, to raise a glass to a special occasion in comfort. The whole experience was charming and delicious.
After marvelling at the 14th century bar, we took our seats in the modern restaurant, domain of chef and director Andrew Pern. I unfortunately had to forgo the champagne starter because of early stages of pregnancy, so instead tucked in to a starter of local shot deer roe ‘minestrone’ with venison and juniper meatballs, ‘sweetheart cabbage’, moorland ‘tomme’ cheese shavings and white spring truffles (£8.50).
Local shot deer roe ‘minestrone’ with venison and juniper meatballs, ‘sweetheart cabbage’, moorland ‘tomme’ cheese shavings and white spring truffles
The locally-sourced produce really shone through in the flavours; in particular, the rather large taste I enjoyed of my mother’s rich risotto of handpicked wild village garlic with poached egg and the Star’s own cured pancetta and homegrown nettle pesto (£8.95).
Risotto of handpicked wild village garlic with poached egg and the Star’s own cured pancetta and homegrown nettle pesto.
My family wised up to my ‘sharing’ in the main course, so I can only speak for the pan-roasted haunch of roe deer with a little venison cottage pie, juniper-creamed savoy cabbage, york ham lardons, hand-picked yellow chanterelles and garden thyme juices (£21.50). The flavours all complemented and despite having roe deer for both courses (clearly my baby wanted red meat!) , the combination did not sit heavy in my stomach. Among the meat on the menu, there was also two fish options and four vegetarian treats.
Pan-roasted haunch of roe deer with a little venison cottage pie, juniper-creamed savoy cabbage, york ham lardons, hand-picked yellow chanterelles and garden thyme juices.
For dessert, I went retro. A ‘girigette’ strawberry and elderflower knickerbocker glory with Star Inn sprinkles and lemon balm chantilly (£9.95). I’ve never had a bad knickerbocker in my time, but this was up there as the best.
The service was friendly and helpful. The small touches made the evening memorable, with the chef adding a happy birthday message to my mother’s dessert: a dark chocolate and roast hazelnut parfait with poached pear, homemade cigarellos and chocolate sauce (£9.95).
Dark chocolate and roast hazelnut parfait with poached pear, homemade cigarellos and chocolate sauce.
For post-dinner coffee, we ventured back to the 14th century building, this time upstairs to the coffee loft, which is a former monk’s dormitory, in the eaves of the thatched roof. Finishing the evening in a gem of a historic building, made me reflect on the individual charm of English ‘foodie’ pubs – I don’t think that they get much better than The Star Inn. (There is also accommodation at The Star Inn, over the road in the Cross House Lodge, at about £200 for bed and breakfast.)
For more inspiration
Try one of chef Andrew Pern’s recipes, or try one of his books.
Find out what else Yorkshire has to offer from the lovely people at Squidbeak. Read Jill Turton’s guest post on a foodie journey of the county.
Think about different ways to celebrate a birthday, or special occasion. Read how we have done it here with our favourite birthday bash ideas.
(Written by Laura)