UPON entering the Water Witch in Lancaster the presence of the canal outside stays with you – with the pub’s wooden floors and open layout giving a distinct nautical impression that definitely lingers.

There are a range of dining areas to choose from, all with a canal view, and a selection of comfortable seats.

But what really jumps out when first walking through the doors is the chiller full of cheeses all lit up ready to be served up.

The pub doesn’t offer table service and the plastic sachets for the condiments are not in line with the rest of the decor and service, which seems to be aimed at a more sophisticated dining experience.

I opted for the vegetable risotto, which was served with garlic bread and a side salad. When it was brought over by a very friendly waitress I was worried that presentation was going to take over from taste as all the different components were served in separate plates. However, I was wrong – it both looked and tasted good. The sauce with the risotto was rich giving a lot of flavour to the rice, and there was a good amount of vegetables.

I enjoyed a local ale and then finished the meal with a platter of cheese which again had a selection of locally produced products.

Throughout the evening there was a great mixture of music, mainly from the 60s which I very much enjoyed.