Freemasons takes top NW spot at Top 50 Gastropubs

1 February 2018

Freemasons takes top NW spot at Top 50 Gastropubs

The Freemasons at Wiswell has had a stellar start to 2018, retaining its top five spot in the Estrella Damm Top 50 Gastropubs Awards, finishing in fourth place, as the highest placed pub in Lancashire and the North West.

The “Estrella Damm” Top 50 Gastropub Awards are voted for by top foodies and hospitality experts. These include gastropub operators (who can’t vote for their own pubs), food writers, pubco catering development managers and executive chefs, celebrity and top hospitality industry chefs, pub guide editors, industry chiefs and food operators. The voting criteria ensures the list really is decided by the industry.

The Sportsman, Seasalter, Kent, was named the top pub for food in the country, regaining first place after losing out to the Star at Harome last year. 

Bristol’s Pony and Trap took second place, with Andrew Pern’s Star at Harome slipping to third, just in front of The Freemasons. 

Lancashire enjoyed two top ten finishes, with The Parkers Arms moving into eighth place.

There were a total of 16 new entries on the list this year.

Publican’s Morning Advertiser food editor Nicholas Robinson, said: “Gastropubs are unique for many reasons, mainly because they blur the lines between pubs and restaurants, yet maintain the charm and atmosphere of a traditional pub.

“They are amazing spaces that thrive as a result of the genius of the chefs in the kitchens and the managers who work hard at the front of the pub.”

“This year’s Estrella Damm Top 50 Gastropubs list shows how diverse gastropubs are up and down the country. We have a mix of Michelin-starred pubs, as well as humble businesses that serve top-notch grub.”

Steven Smith, Chef Owner at The Freemasons at Wiswell, said; “To be included alongside such esteemed company really is proof of all the hard work and dedication by the team at The Freemasons and we’re delighted to take the fourth spot for the second year in a row. Most importantly for me, it shows a strong level of consistency, which is so important in this business and is essentially what keeps customers coming through our doors time and time again.

“And of course, leading the way for pubs not just in Lancashire but in the North West feels fantastic. Being a pub is at the heart of what we do and something we’re very proud of, and awards such as these really demonstrate that we’re giving the customers something very special, which we strive to do at each and every visit.” 


The top 10 of the UK’s Top 50 Gastropubs 2018 list: 
The Sportsman, Seasalter, Kent
The Pony & Trap, Chew Magna
The Star at Harome, North Yorkshire
The Freemasons at Wiswell, Lancashire
The Coach, Marlow, Buckinghamshire
The Drapers Arms, Islington, London
The Beehive, Maidenhead, Berkshire
The Parkers Arms, nr Clitheroe, Lancashire
The Hardwick, Abergavenny, Wales
The Marksman, Hackney, London

You can see the full list at the new Top 50 Gastropubs website 

You can follow the event on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram via the handle Top50Gastropubs.