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AA Notable Wine List 2018-19
AA rating

About this rating

Restaurants are awarded from 1 to 5 Rosettes for culinary excellence. One Rosette restaurants are highly recommended in a local area and five Rosettes have reached the pinnacle of culinary excellence at a world class level.

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Exciting virtuoso cooking in a relaxed village inn

AA Inspector

At a glance

Vegetarian menu
Tasting menu
Private dining
Wines by the glass
Wheelchair access
Credit cards accepted

Constructed from three little cottages in a village near Clitheroe, The Freemasons manages the clever balancing-act of being at once a country pub and a destination restaurant. Not that airs and graces are in conspicuous evidence, when napkins are rolled-up kitchen cloths and the furniture looks naturally weathered. Steven Smith's menus range from a six-course taster with extras to the core of the operation, a seasonally-changing carte. A springtime offering might kick off with fresh young asparagus in a teacup of deep green soup strewn with puffs of Proctor's Kick Ass Lancashire Cheddar. Main courses may take their inspiration from French masters as for the salmon Troisgros brothers, served in a sauce of wild sorrel with whipped Jersey Royals, the fish water-bathed and dressed in orange zest and chives, or there could be majestic slow-cooked shoulder of spring lamb with peas à la française in a minted jus. The regional champion dessert has to be a square of deliciously rich egg custard, garnished with rhubarb sorbet, mousse and gel, as well as blobs of pistachio butter.

Opening hours

  • Closed: 2nd January for 2 weeks
  • Days closed: Monday to Tuesday
  • Lunch served from: 12
  • Lunch served until: 2.30
  • Dinner served from: 6
  • Dinner served until: 9


  • Chef(s): Steven Smith, Matthew Smith

Food and drink

  • Cuisine style: Modern British
  • Vegetarian menu
  • Wines under £30: 56
  • Wines over £30: 108
  • Wines by the glass: 30

Price guide

  • Credit cards accepted


  • Wheelchair accessible
  • Accessible toilets
  • Assist dogs welcome

Additional information

  • Seats: 70
  • Private dining available
  • Private dining seats: 14
  • Off-site parking available: In village

Getting here

A59, on edge of Whalley village near Clitheroe.

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Three-course lunch from£27.50**Minimum price for a 3-course lunch *Minimum price for a 3-course lunch
*Minimum price for a 3-course lunch
*Minimum price for a 3-course lunch
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