The White Horse

Main Road Brancaster Staithe Norfolk PE31 8BY

Tiny Brancaster is famous for its oysters, and these days the fabled White Horse, right on the main road overlooking the marsh and beach, is almost equally famous as a great place to try them. To be fair, though, the delights of this pub/restaurant with rooms, don't stop there. Not only is its cosy informality beguiling, but the 2 AA Rosette menu boasts much else besides – with plenty of other locally caught seafood, lobster, fish and chips, beautiful fresh sea bass, and local steak with chips. You can also eat in the bar, and there are 4* rooms too if you want to stay – and why wouldn't you?

The location, too, is magical, with panoramic views across the tidal marshes that you can enjoy from the conservatory tacked onto the back of the building, and terrace beyond that – blink, and on a summer's day with a sharing platter in front of you, you could be in the Camargue, and during the cooler months there are heaters and blankets on hand so you can still enjoy the view. They make the most of the place too, with regular lobster barbecues during summer and roaring fires to tempt you indoors during winter, when of course, the excellent local mussels are in season.

We like the fact that a meal at the White Horse can be as cheap or as expensive as you like. If there is a much better place along this stretch of coast to stop off for a pint and a snack with your dog, or to come for a full-blown celebration with family and friends, then we have yet to find it.

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