28 Jul 2021
A historic 19th century riverside pub in acres of glorious gardens, superlative seasonal food and comfortable bedrooms that combine impeccable taste with picture postcard views – welcome to Sculthorpe Mill in North Norfolk.
Sculthorpe Mill is situated in stunning countryside just two miles from the Georgian market town of Fakenham and a short drive from the county’s stunning coastline. With beautiful grounds, impeccable food and the gentle soothing babble of the River Wensum as its soundtrack, this pub with rooms is a magical destination, a must-visit for foodies and a great place for a relaxing escape.
Seasoned restaurateurs and siblings Siobhan and Caitriona Peyton have completed a six-figure refurbishment sympathetically transforming this destination pub with rooms with the help of acclaimed interior designer Shaun Clarkson. The spectacular grounds have been further enhanced by Paul Brewster with the installation of a new outdoor dining terrace and beautiful flower-covered pergola.
As one would expect from the Peytons, food is taken seriously with menus that take visitors from breakfast through to dinner and everything in between. As was as delicious all-day pub dishes, there’s also first-class restaurant and al fresco summer garden menus, with the addition of an elevated barbecue at the weekends. The pub is also open for breakfast every morning and for bar meals, coffees and pastries throughout the day.
The ingredient-led menu from Head chef Elliot Ketley (Soho House Group) has provenance at its heart. Food is locally inspired, seasonal and gutsy with seafood from local day boat fisherman Henry Randall, Norfolk-grown tomatoes from Hillside Nurseries, Dexter beef and Herdwick Lamb from Heath Farm in Great Massingham and ethically sourced Norfolk quail and poussin from High Field Farm to name just a few stand-out suppliers. Make sure you try the freshly baked soda bread – it’s a secret Peyton family recipe.
With its proximity to the coast, seafood naturally features on the menu with must-tries including smoked sea trout with shaved fennel and apple; Cromer crab and avocado salad with pickled cucumber; and wild sea bass with brown butter, samphire and capers. Dishes from the land feature choices such as venison tartare with smoked egg yolk and raw cacao; and grilled pork rib eye chop with broad beans; whilst those following a plant-based diet, can opt for a golden beetroot and black bean burger with caramelised onions; or charred baby cauliflower with mint, pistachios and harissa.
Throughout the summer, the weekend Garden Menu is served on the beautiful, covered terrace with two crystal clear streams running either side. Take in the soothing surroundings with a chilled glass of rosé in hand whilst watching Elliot in action on the giant charcoal-fired ‘grizzly’ cooking large slabs of meat and whole fish on the bone.
Wine consultant Zeren Wilson is responsible for the exciting and unashamedly predominantly European wine list. Putting the spotlight on lesser-known producers and boutique wineries, the result is an eclectic and characterful selection, from British sparkling varietals through to robust reds and best-in-class whites as well as blush rosés and orange wines.
East Anglian cask ales and craft beers from local Duration, Moongazer and Barsham breweries sit alongside cider from Whin Hill in Wells-next-the-Sea and other UK brews including Apple Pie and Rhubarb cider from Turners in Kent. You’ll also find a great range of locally distilled artisan spirits, house-made cordials and freshly squeezed seasonal juices.
For staycations, foodie breaks and weekend getaways, six bedrooms offer just the right degree of comfort and luxury (plus an excuse to indulge in the superb wine list). From family suites to doubles and dog-friendly rooms, all boast views of the Mill’s gorgeous gardens and the River Wensum. Rates start from £110 per night inclusive of a hearty Norfolk breakfast.
Sculthorpe Mill – a peaceful haven and gourmet destination in the heart of Norfolk.
Now taking reservations for dining and bedrooms from 1st August.
Lynn Road, Fakenham, NR21 9QG