Leave your preconceptions of Cotswold dining at the door, The Sheep on Sheep Street is a new breed of hotel restaurant that combines the traditional elements you’d expect from a 17th century Cotswold pub, with sleek styling, incredibly friendly service and a bustling atmosphere – even on a Saturday lunchtime.
Driving into Stow-on-the-Wold with my husband and toddler, I was on a knife’s edge over our decision to visit The Sheep over naptime. My threenager’s hunger-fuelled rages are something I’m more comfortable managing at Pizza Express than in a classy Cotswold dining room, but determined to enjoy an hour of grown up luxury, we entered the airy, open-plan eatery with fingers and toes crossed!
Quintessentially Cotswold from the outside but effortlessly cool as you walk inside, The Sheep welcomes guests with striking Moroccan lighting and mismatched flooring, then juxtaposes the Arabian vibe with traditional Cotswold style. Expect chesterfield benches upholstered in a plush teal velvet; each corner bedecked with Instagram-worthy interiors; gallery walls, tactile fabrics and chunky wooden tables – It’s simply a stunning place to spend time.
Showing us to our table with a colouring sheet and crayons in hand was Scott, a server of the highest calibre, who considerately asked if we’d like our Son’s meal brought out with our starters. Regularly checking in on us throughout the meal, Scott brought a touch of charm and a huge dose of personality to proceedings.
To begin, we selected two starters to share from the A La Carte Menu – the daily baked wood-fired bread, served with rosemary and garlic butter; and the barbeque pulled pork nachos with pico de gallo salsa, cheese sauce, jalapeno, sour cream and coriander.
The hunks of bread were fluffy and flavoursome, and paired perfectly with the flavoured butter, but the showstopper of the entire meal was the pulled pork nachos, which were Tex-Mex perfection, and quite literally, the best thing since sliced bread.
I don’t know how The Sheep’s team created such deliciously crispy tortilla chips and combined it with sumptuously tender pulled pork to create the best nachos I’ve ever enjoyed… I can only assume it was witchcraft.
After a loaded carb-fest, we decided to continue the theme with our main courses… the diet starts Monday!
The Sheep is famous for its authentic Italian wood fired pizza dough bases, so my husband indulged in the Milano, topped with fennel salami, prosciutto, mozzarella, fresh oregano and rocket; while I selected the a Club Panuozzo – a unique sandwich, where the sourdough bread is baked fresh to order in the 300-degree pizza oven and filled with bacon, grilled chicken, lettuce, tomato, egg and mayonnaise.
Famed for a reason, the pizzas were clearly of excellent quality, prepared to order and topped with fresh ingredients that were packed with flavour. The portion sizes were generous, and were priced fairly considering The Sheep’s Cotswold postcode.
The Sheep offers some great deals for those looking for a Cotswold staycation. With 22 rooms available, each maintaining the contemporary styling enjoyed in the bar and restaurant, guests can enjoy a Sunday lunch and overnight stay from as little as £140; alternatively by booking directly there’s a free full English breakfast on offer, saving £10 per person.
By Melissa Hamblett
Tuesday 15 October 2019
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