‘Around here, people want top-end food’: how Lancashire’s Ribble Valley became Britain’s gastropub capital

With villages around the town of Clitheroe now home to three of the UK’s top 50 gastropubs, we celebrate this unique north-western take on excellent pub diningOnly a handful of UK towns can lay claim to being culinary centres. Over the years we’ve had hype as well as hearty reviews for Bray in Berkshire – care of the Roux brothers and Heston Blumenthal. There is also Padstow thanks to Rick Stein and posh fish and chips; Ludlow; Abergavenny with its farmers’ market and popular festival; and Malton, dubbed “Yorkshire’s food capital” by the late Antonio Carluccio.Now Clitheroe in Lancashire has joined the exclusive little set. Well, I say Clitheroe, but really I mean satellites of the market town, three of which now feature in the new Top 50 Gastropubs list from the team that produces the influential World’s 50 Best Restaurants and other hit parades. A fourth local pub just misses the premier division, coming in at number 56. Continue reading…

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