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Grade II listed hotel, award winning food, Thornbridge brewery and Bakewell tarts

After a 2-hour drive from the North of England we checked in to the Riverside House hotel in Ashford-in-the-water. Ashford-in-the-water is a picture postcard village in the peak district and only a short 5 minute drive from its larger, popular neighbour of Bakewell.

The Riverside House Hotel opened in 2020 during lockdown and was purchased by the restaurateurs who own the famous Rafters restaurant in Sheffield. The hotel is a grade II listed building and is able to offer pure luxury together with that 'lost-in-the-country' feeling with 14 bedrooms situated on the river Wye.

The decor is cosy, warm and stylish and the staff will instantly make you feel welcome and like you've entered a home from home.

We spent the early evening walking from the hotel along a public footpath to reach the Thornbridge brewery. Thornbridge is a staple of the peak district and we love visiting every time we explore this part of the UK. The brewery has a variety of craft beers available and you can also enjoy a tasty pizza. The brewery is a 30-minute walk from Riverside House.

During your stay you can enjoy a sample of the famous Rafters restaurant from the comfort of your hotel. It is a taste experience from start to finish.

You will start the evening with the opportunity to have a welcome drink in the bar where you can sip a cocktail and peruse the menu choosing from a 2/3 course menu and a tasting menu. Once you've placed your order you will be provided with amuse-bouche made fresh and using local ingredients.

Now at your table you'll start with warm bread freshly out of the oven and Rafters speciality butter made with Hendersons Relish. We enjoyed our butter with some black treacle bread with complimented the butter perfectly.

We opted for the 3-course set menu and enjoyed scallops, quail, rib-eye steak, soanes farm chicken, rhubarb custard and lemon parfait. The food was impeccable and could not be faulted in the slightest. The dining room is intimate and cosy and perfect for couples, friends and families alike.

After waking from a rejuvenating nights sleep we enjoyed a 3-course breakfast at the Rafters at Riverhouse restaurant which comprised of yogurt and granola, fresh pastries and then cooked options. I chose a full-english breakfast and James chose Eggs Benedict.

This hotel is impressive on a number of levels from the decor to the food and the location. It is the perfect starting point for starting a number of trails including this trail which incorporates part of the famous Monsal trail.

After the walk we ended the end by driving the short distance to Bakewell where we explored this chocolate box town and of course, visited the Old Original Pudding Shop to pick up some traditional bakewell puddings and tarts before heading home.

A beautiful staycation is a picturesque part of the UK.


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