A HOSTELRY which offers ‘an exceptional meal in convivial surroundings’ has been named Cumbria’s Dining Pub of the Year.

The Punch Bowl Inn & Restaurant at Crosthwaite received the accolade in the 2020 Good Pub Guide. This is the fourth time in recent years that The Punch Bowl has claimed the county's top accolade – also being named the best in the 2015, 2016 and 2018 editions of the guide.

The Good Pub Guide selects its top 10 regional dining pubs based on customer recommendations that are independently backed up by editor visits and inspections.

Widely recognised as the UK pub-goers bible, the 37th Good Pub Guide features reviews of more than 5,000 pubs based on visitors’ recommendations, with online listings for another 40,000 pubs.

Commenting on the Punch Bowl, the Guide says it is “a smart dining pub with a proper bar and other elegant rooms, a fine wine list, impressive food, friendly staff, and stylish bedrooms.”

It also adds ‘many customers come to this ‘civilised place for the excellent food but there is a proper public bar too, and plenty of chatty locals. Bedrooms are lovely and well equipped and breakfasts are first class.’

Richard Rose, owner of the Punch Bowl Inn & Restaurant, said: “It is a great achievement to be voted Cumbria’s best dining pub once again and I am hugely proud of our hard-working team for the dedication they put in every single day to help us win accolades like this one.

“We never take anything for granted. If anything, winning awards makes us even more determined to keep striving to be the best – creating consistently outstanding food and offering exceptional customer service.”

Good Pub Guide editor Fiona Stapley said: “Since we started the Good Pub Guide nearly 40 years ago, what has not changed is our enjoyment of a well-run pub.

“They are the hub of a local community where customers of all walks of life and all ages mix easily and they are run by extraordinary, hard-working licensees who have adapted their establishments to fit in with the needs and whims of our modern lives. They are uniquely British and should be celebrated. We are very lucky to have them.”

The Good Pub Guide 2020 published by Ebury Press is on sale now priced at £15.99. More information is available at www.thegoodpubguide.co.uk.