Since finally getting a car (or rather a personal chauffeur because Dave now has a car), I feel like I've spent 95% of my free time on the road. We had a pretty hectic christmas trying to visit various family members so when the suggestion of a weekend away in January came up I wasn't convinced at first. Then I took a look at some photos of Ox Pasture Hall hotel in Scarborough and immediately began planning the trip. More than worth the short drive up to Yorkshire, this country house hotel is surrounded by beautiful country side, including their seventeen acres of grounds.
We were immediately blown away by the views of the grounds so we made it our mission to get there early in the day and take a walk in the surrounding countryside. The staff were only too happy to help provide us details of nearby walking routes and somewhere to leave the car. It turns out though we weren't very good at listening to their directions so we took a wrong turn as soon as left the grounds and ended up in a nearby village instead. Luckily for us it was still pretty picturesque and when we returned to the hotel we were greeted with a large pot of yorkshire tea by their fire, a perfect way to warm back up and relax. It also gave us a chance to get to know the hotel cat ginger nuts, who made a sneaky check in a little while before christmas and has been hanging around ever since. No-one seems to know where he came from but I definitely wasn't complaining at some cat cuddles during our walk around the site.
The room came with everything you could possibly need, a tv, radio, plenty of tea and coffee supplies and ton of storage space – which made it even harder not to just try and move in permanently. I think often when you go away you don’t want to spend too much time in the room because you want to make sure you get the most out of the trip and see the local area but at Ox Pasture Hall it is so hard to drag yourself away. We spent a couple of hours just relaxing in the suite, listening to the radio and looking at the grounds. I also had to make the most of the enormous bath tub since I only have a shower at home. It made me wish I’d taken a bath bomb or something with me but then again they probably wouldn’t have appreciated me filling their bathroom with glitter.
If you can’t tell, I was pretty in love with the place by this point but obviously I couldn’t form a final opinion until sampling some food. When dinner time finally rolled around we were shown through again to the reception area to warm by the fire while we browsed the menus and had a drink. This was such a nice touch, we felt really looked after and it was so comforting by the fire.
It also really cut down our time waiting for our meal when we did move through to the restaurant which was nice. For our starters, Dave had chosen baked goats cheese and I went for herring fillets with lemon mayonnaise and cucumber. It wasn't something I'd usually order so it was nice to have a bit of a change, and I really enjoyed it, the flavours worked beautifully together and the presentation was amazing. The portions were also completely enormous, I could have easily eaten mine as a main course.
For the main, Dave chose steak - I of course had to have a little try and can agree it was one of the best steaks I'd ever had, cooked totally to perfection. I on the other hand chose the rack of lamb, I don't order a lot of lamb usually but this was amazing, really succulent meat, with some fancy mash and mini veggies. I was almost speechless at how delicious this main was. It has changed my opinions on lamb forever.
At this point we were both completely stuffed, but some chats with the restaurant manager convinced us we would have to try a dessert so we went for the sharing desserts, expecting them to be just a few bites each. Shortly after our waiter presented us with two small glasses filled with boozy sorbet, and asked if that was what we'd expected for our dessert. He then revealed these were only a palate cleanser and brought us the biggest tray of desserts I've ever seen. To say we had misjudged the situation would be an understatement but I am giving extra marks for the top quality jokes.
We just about managed a try of all the desserts, including a bitter chocolate tart, tiramisu, cheesecake, ice cream and some others I'm not really sure on the names of - it really is tough running this blog sometimes, but I can promise that every one was delicious.
For our second day, we made another attempt at the nearby walking tours (listening to the instructions this time) and took in some of the amazing views. The hotel is tucked away in miles of beautiful yorkshire countryside and was perfect for a crisp winter walk with our cameras.
When it finally came to check out time I was incredibly disappointed to be leaving, and from how often it interrupted us the cat seemed to feel the same way, but I quickly perked up with a short drive into Scarborough for some even more brilliant sights and a walk along the seaside. I'm completely in love with Yorkshire now so hopefully it'll be somewhere we can return to a lot more in the near future.
*I was offered a complementary stay at Ox Pasture Hall in exchange for an honest review. All words and opinions are my own, images are my own or taken by David Gurney.