Guide: Where to eat and drink in Stamford, Lincolnshire

Spires, old stone buildings and pubs: three things that sum up the bustling market town of Stamford, located on the borders of Lincolnshire, Rutland, Leicestershire, Cambridgeshire and Northamptonshire.

But using these words alone to describe the town is like calling Michelangelo’s Statue of David a nice bit of marble. Whether it’s the ancient limestone architecture, the numerous boozers, mini-Oxford spires, or presence of the river Welland which bisects the town, Stamford has a magic all of its own.

In summer, its beer gardens, delis and restaurants buzz, tourists amble (often into the road) and the town meadows host a variety of sun-bathers, drinkers, football players and frisbee flingers.

So, next time you visit, where should you go?


Our Stamford tips…

The George
71 Saint Martin’s Close, PE9 2LB
The town’s most celebrated hotel –  historic, haunted (so they say), labyrinthine, luxurious and devoted to serving good food. www.georgehotelofstamford.com, 01780 750750


Fine Food Store
37 St Mary’s Street, PE9 2DF
Coffee, amazing cakes, sandwiches, artisan cheeses and a great ‘secret garden’. www.thefinefoodstore.com, 01780 754222


The Tobie Norris
12 St Paul’s Street, PE9 2BE
Outstanding pub that dates back to 1280. Sublime interior restoration, superb local beers and great pizzas. www.tobienorris.com, 01780 753800


Adnams Cellar & Kitchen
St Mary’s Passage, PE9 2HG
Carefully selected wines, beers, food and kitchenware are sold in the Suffolk brewer’s Stamford store. www.adnams.co.uk, 01780 753127


Hambleton Bakery
1 Ironmonger Street, PE9 1PL
Traditional fresh bread, muffins, cakes and more baked with love in a magnificent wood-fired oven. www.hambletonbakery.co.uk, 01572 768936


No 3 The Yard
Rear of 3 Ironmonger Street, PE9 1PL
Tucked away behind various limestone walls in the centre of town, the food at this Michelin Bib Gourmand-awarded restaurant is of a reliably high standard. More here, 01780 756080


The Crown Hotel
All Saints’ Place PE9 2AG
A busy pub, restaurant and small hotel in the heart of Stamford. Serving great food, its menus are local and seasonal. www.thecrownhotelstamford.co.uk, 01780 763136


Raj of India
2 All Saints Street, PE9 2PA
An institution among Stamfordians, the Raj deserves its hard-won reputation. www.rajofindia-stamford.co.uk, 01780 408104


Burghley House
Burghley Park, PE9 3JY
Unmissable Elizabethan stately home with gardens, a deer park, stunning orangery/cafe and garden shop. www.burghley.co.uk


The Bull & Swan and William Cecil
Both at the top of High Street St Martins, PE9 2LJ
The William Cecil is a fascinating hotel/restaurant that has recently been given a quirky refurbishment. The Bull & Swan, situated just a few yards away, is a traditional town pub serving highly regarded, locally sourced food. www.bullandswan.co.uk, 01780 766412 and www.thewilliamcecil.co.uk, 01780 750070


Hidden gem…
The walled garden of the aptly named Garden House Hotel on High Street St Martins is beautiful. Professionally maintained and landscaped, it is probably the best pub or hotel garden in the town.

 

Matt Wright
The author:

Matt lives in Leicestershire with his wife, two kids and dog. He is passionate about British pubs, slow food and home brewing. He founded Great Food Club (originally as Great Food Magazine) in 2010 after being inspired by local producers near his home town of Melton Mowbray - Britain's 'Rural Capital of Food'.