This is another example of what the Cotswolds do so well, which is indulge the fancy that in a previous life you were an aristocrat. Or, at the very least, a well-kept person who did not eke out an unseemly, grubby existence in a mill or up a chimney. The layout of this establishment means that you can choose to eat and drink and play the aristo in vaguely historical surroundings. The ground floor is divided up into several lounges; in one, you can sit on a mock-Tudor 'settle' in front of a log fire. In some, you can enjoy what might be called a Victwardian ambience: high-backed chairs, small round tea tables and the obligatory log fire. For the modernists amongst you, slip off your gilet and sit on a tub chair or an enormous, squashy sofa. The fact that this place table (or chair. Or sofa) service adds to that Downton Abbey feel. No queueing at a bar for food and drink, just find a place to sit and someone comes to you.
The selection of food is not cheap and neither are the drinks - £2.75 for a coffee is a lot. We had sandwiches and a bowl of chips (I'm a pleb). The sandwich was ham and mustard and was reasonably generous. Three slices of bloomer bread, two slices of fairly thick ham. Not a lot of mustard but what was there was strong - there was a pleasant burn on the tongue as an aftertaste. The accompanying salad was leaves and the crisps were Walkers ready salted. Chips were fine, but nothing special. Thick cut, but inconsistent in colour and crunch. There were some golden, with crisp edges, but mixed with some anaemic-looking examples, with a less fluffy, light texture. Rather too many of them had dark spots and eyes. Although that at least defines them as fresh or pre-cut chips from potatoes rather than oven-ready style, it was a let down. Latte was good though. Served in a very large glass, Costa-style with a shortbread biscuit, hot with a decent foam. Drew's Americano was also served in a decent sized cup, with saucer and he was offered a very generous portion of milk. The largest milk accompaniment I have yet seen, in fact. Drew had a second cup as the first was so good, and I pinched his biscuit because I am a common little oik.