M6, Junction 40; 5 minutes
Mon-Sun noon-2.30pm, 6pm-9pm
Vegetarian or vegan options
Parking available onsite
Sister to the glamorous Askham Hall hotel and Queens Head pub down the road, the George and Dragon is a classy country inn with gourmet food to match. Long, low and whitewashed, it’s been lovingly restored, decorated in period colours and reinstated as a community hub. The run of interconnecting rooms feels intimate with flagstone floors, floorboards, scrubbed tables and walls hung with period photographs. There’s a sunny courtyard with chunky benches out front and an enclosed garden beyond where kids and dogs can cheerfully run free – ask behind the bar for suggested walking routes if you’re after a longer hike.
Food is foraged, organically home-grown and home-reared, and prepared with finesse. The menu is changed seasonally and may include potted crab, beef and ale cottage pie, venison haunch with bitter chocolate, Askham Hall cured meats with pickles, Lowther honey parfait and cherries, or dark chocolate tart with pistachios. Once you’re fed and watered, mingle with the locals in the cosy bar or slump into a sofa next to the smouldering fire.