If there’s one place I return time and time again it is Whitby. I love the seaside setting, the riverside bars and the beautiful abbey ruins. I had never been to Scarborough before so when the opportunity arose for a road trip I was in the car in a flash! Off to Ox Pasture Hall Hotel we went.
The journey wasn’t without complications with the A64 being closed for half of the journey but we took a more picturesque route through Pickering and found a great little farm shop so it wasn’t a complete waste of time.
We were surprised by the rural location of the Ox Pasture Hall Hotel. With it being so close to Scarborough we were expecting it to be more built up but it is down a windy road in the middle of some amazing walking routes, perfect if that is something you enjoy. We were checked in quickly and shown to our room which was a luxury suite complete with a king sized bed, seating area and large bathroom.
The room was a great size with lovely views of the surrounding countryside. It was warm with a big seating area, table and chairs for dining when ordering room service and plenty of storage space if you are staying for longer than a couple of nights.
There were a few niggles in the room around cleaniness with some cobwebs around the lights, mildew on the shower head and a number of bulbs that were out. Such a shame as these are such simple things to sort out.
We were running quite late by the time we arrived at the hotel but managed to have a quick look around the pretty grounds before we headed for afternoon tea in the bar. The hotel is quite separated with rooms dotted around the grounds rather than in a traditional hotel block. I loved this as it gave more privacy, there were only 2 rooms in the area of the hotel we stayed in and there was a lovely courtyard to walk through to get to the main hotel building.
We sat at a roaring fire and were presented with an impressive selection of sandwiches and cakes along with some tea and coffee.
The scones were a little overdone and my friend wasn’t impressed as they didn’t offer plain ones, but the sandwiches were lovely and fresh as were the cakes. Whilst dining a wedding party entered the bar which was a little awkward for all concerned. They were dressed to the nines in their wedding attire whilst we were fairly scruffy in jeans. There was also a lot of them so we felt we were taking up their space a little bit.
We headed out to Scarborough centre after our tea to get some fresh air and a general nosy around.
Not surprisingly for March is was fairly chilly with a brisk wind which we sheltered from in the numerous arcades. It was quiet with it being off season but we had a great time spending money on the slot machines and using the tickets to buy sweets.
We headed back to the hotel and I had a bath before heading into the hotel restaurant for dinner. The bath was so deep it took ages to fill but the large waterfall tap helped and the toiletries provided were more than adequate to make lots of bubbles. I was so chilled out I was tempted to cancel dinner as I was so tired!
We were seated in the bar with the Courtyard Restaurant menu and served drinks whilst we waited. I thought this was a lovely touch as the bar is much less formal and allowed us to have a chat without disturbing the other diners. The restaurant was quiet and fairly cold, the heating wasn’t on and there was a small heater in the corner which tells me there was an issue with it. This wasn’t a major issue as I popped back to the room for a jumper but I think it would have been better for this to have been mentioned beforehand.
Prior to our meal we were presented with an appetiser of ham hock terrine served with piccalilli and a mustard dressing. The ham hock was soft and full of flavour which worked well with the piccalilli. I don’t think it needed the mustard dressing, it worked perfectly without it.
I chose the tomato soup to start which was lovely. A hint of basil and chilli gave it a good kick.
My friend chose the prawn cocktail which he felt was pricey at £7.50. It was pleasant enough but the prawns were fairly small and it was a small portion.
I chose the dish simply titled ‘beef’ for my main. Brisket of beef atop a bed of mash (on the left) was slightly dry but the mash was wonderfully creamy and smooth. The mini beef pudding on spring greens was good with a very thin layer of suet and soft meat on the inside. The vegetables were just cooked, the way I like them, but the whole dish was a little overtaken by the gravy which was very salty. The menu stated that the meal came with a separate jug of gravy but this didn’t arrive. This wasn’t a problem though as there was plenty on the plate already and I’m sure, had I asked, this would have been provided.
Being so close to the sea my friend went for the fish and chips. Unfortunately the batter on the fish had gone soft and the fish on the inside was a little overdone. The chips were a little dry yet the tartare sauce was really tasty with a lovely acidic bite.
When it came to dessert I chose the creme brulee. There was a satisfying crack to the burnt sugar top and a lovely creaminess to the creme but unfortunately it was slightly overdone and had started to curdle. The sweetness of the shortbread balanced the vanilla flavours though so it wasn’t unpleasant.
My friend chose the chocolate fudge cake which had featured on our afternoon tea earlier on. I don’t think he would have chosen it had he known and it wasn’t really what he was expecting but it did what it said on the tin. Chocolate, fudge and cake with ice cream. At £5.50 it was on the small side and a little disappointing having already had some that afternoon. My friend had asked about the cheese board prior to choosing this but was disappointed that the staff had to ask what cheese was included. When they confirmed there didn’t appear to be anything local and it was served with Jacob’s crackers. This isn’t a huge issue but there are so many great local providers for both it seems a shame that they aren’t sourcing ingredients from nearby.
The bed was really comfy and we slept well before heading back to the restaurant for breakfast. The breakfast is cooked fresh for you whilst the continental items are self serve. I quite like this as you can be sure it hasn’t been sat around for ages.
The grounds of the hotel are vast with 17 acres to explore. This should appeal to both walkers and cyclists but also those who want to chill out and relax. Unfortunately there is limited mobile reception and the wifi is really hit and miss. This was the main gripe for us, my friend wanting to continue running his business and me wanting to use social media whilst at the hotel. For dinner, bed and breakfast in the luxury suite the price is £295. I would expect basic wifi for this price especially having such a large room to sit in whilst working.
As a complete package we enjoyed our stay at Ox Pasture Hall Hotel. There is lots of things to see and do in the surrounding areas if you want to. We also visited Eden Camp for some history on our way home!
We stayed as guests of Ox Pasture Hall Hotel and were not asked to pay other than for our drinks.