8 Vicarage Fold, Wiswell, WHALLEY, BB7 9DF
Once three small cottages, one of which was a freemasons' lodge, The Freemasons is now a refined gastro-pub, if that's not disparaging of the quality of the food on offer. The interior had a bit of a restyle early in 2014 but what remains is a stylish decor, antique furniture, rugs on the floor, an open fire and even a stag's head, all conveying a welcoming, warm and convivial atmosphere. The kitchen team combs the locality for Lancashire's best produce and combines it with global influences to produce impressive results. Nidderdale lamb, for instance, is served as crisp belly and kofta, accompanied by miso aubergine, charred lettuce, mint and yoghurt. Another starter of monkfish is roasted tandoori-style and plated with sweet potato, apple and amaretti. Pairing seafood with meat is no stranger nowadays, but here scorched langoustines come not just with pork belly and rhubarb but with dashi tea too. A playful touch is given to some dishes: velouté of smoked haddock and chargrilled leeks with a fish finger hot dog, followed by Anna's Happy Trotters (roast loin and sausage) with salt-baked pineapple, cabbage, black pudding and pork pie sauce. Fish, meanwhile, might appear as roast loin of cod with a risotto of squid, Jerusalem artichoke and hazelnuts along with chorizo and yuzu, or as plain as the catch of the day simply grilled with lemon and brown butter and accompanied by potted shrimps and chips. The vibrant balance of flavours is as much due to the kitchen's sound techniques as to the thought that goes into compositions and the quality of the raw materials. And attractive presentation is a forte too, with desserts such as passionfruit soufflé with hot chocolate sauce, or caramelised banana tart with rum and raisin ice cream.
Tel: 01254 822218
Please quote 'The AA'.
Send an email
Days closed: Mon-Tue
Dates closed: 2 Jan for 2 wks
Sunday lunch available.
Cooking type: Modern British
Chef: Steven Smith, Hywel Griffith
Number of seats: 70
Accessible for wheelchairs.
A La Carte Dinner Main Course from: £16.95
Prices are for guidance only. Please check when booking for current rates.