We’ve been going to the Star at Harome for well over forty years now in its various guises. It’s been good, bad, good, average and [hopefully] good or very good again. Old habits die hard and so you keep going back, rather than explore the alternatives. Now Harome is a bit like Bray – a very pretty village in North Yorkshire with not one, but two excellent places to stay and eat. And the story is an interesting one.
Andrew and Jacquie Pern built up the Star to its Michelin heights, creating a mini “Padstein” with places to stay and places to shop. They acquired the Pheasant in 2009 to expand their little empire even further. But in 2010 they announced they were splitting up “amicably” but intended to carry on as business partners…
She said she and Andrew had had an “amicable parting of the ways” and were hardly going to throw away everything they had worked for, just because they were no longer together personally.
Well it seems they’ve made it work. Peter Neville moved across from the Star to the Pheasant and has created a menu all of his own. The design and style of the Pheasant is, again, a contrast to the Star and we prefer it. The extensions to the Star were by Bramhall Blenkharn, who usually do stunning stuff. Good contemporary extensions to old buildings are just the way forward – see the Studio Farris image below, or the Hunsett House by Acme. We’re afraid that, for us, at the Star the attempted contemporary design [portholes?] just jars with the thatch.
Inside the Pheasant it’s a sort of Covent Garden Hotel of the north, and the furniture redolent of the OKA showroom. And that’s a compliment, by the way. Overall it feels extremely comfortable and relaxed and, whilst we wouldn’t swap our more minimalist home for it, it’s definitely a place in which to relax in a soft eclectic way. You know, comfy sofas, wood-burning stove, stag’s heads and chrome lights [well, we didn’t see any chrome lights but they would fit]. Wallpaper bookshelves behind reception. All in all a revelation. Why has it taken us so long to get here? Well, there are lots of places in Yorkshire…
Very relaxed service, great food and wine by the glass. We were the only people in at lunchtime today, as it happens – a very cold February Tuesday. Must have a bob or two to ride the quiet periods… So, we’re going back to stay next time. The only downside? No great walks from the door [unless you like glorious Yorkshire farmland] but we’ll live with that. Have a look at the Guardian review.
Inn/Hotel/Restaurant with rooms The Pheasant Harome