Digbeth Street, STOW-ON-THE-WOLD, GL54 1BN
In the centre of pretty Stow-on-the-Wold, this stone-built inn claims to be the oldest pub in England. Parts of the historic building date back to 947AD, when it is believed to have been a hospice built by the order of Aethelmar, Duke of Cornwall, on land belonging to Evesham Abbey. More recent additions include vast 16th-century fireplaces and low 'mind your head' beams. The Porch has a relaxed feel about the place, especially the bar which dispenses a range of real ales, including several from the pub's brewery owners Brakspear. Served in the bar, conservatory and dining room, the food is a worthy recipient of two AA Rosettes. A typical dinner meal might begin with grilled Devon sardines, heritage tomatoes and sourdough toast; or twice-baked cheese soufflé, with leeks and wholegrain mustard and lead onto Butts Farm calves' liver, creamed potato, bacon, spring cabbage and red wine; with white chocolate millefeuille, white rum and strawberries to finish.