The very Manchester chef has come over all Yorkshire
Since his restaurant at the Mark Addy closed in 2014 after flood damage caused £200,000 worth of damage, chef Robert Owen Brown has been having a fine old time popping up at food festivals, supper clubs and even as a panellist on Radio Four’s Kitchen Cabinet hosted by national food critic Jay Rayner.
Just when we thought he might never settle down again, we hear that he has recently started running the kitchen at The Hinchliffe, a traditional country pub in Cragg Vale near Hebden Bridge.
Confidential will no doubt be hot-footing it over there soon for a fully scored review, but on paper, it looks like the Mancunian chef and the picturesque traditional boozer are a match made in heaven.
“We are based in one of the most beautiful places on earth”, proudly boasts The Hincliffe’s website, going on to explain how they source most of their beef, pork and eggs from Rudd Clough, a farm just 500 meters up the lane. Landlords JW Lees have recently invested in refurbishing the country gastropub and the appointment of a chef renowned for cooking British comfort food using ingredients with solid local provenance should firmly put this place on the map for food lovers.
We’re not sure how much of an influence on the menu he’s had so far, with him only having taken over the kitchens a fortnight ago, but ROB trademark touches are already in place in starters such as crispy whitebait with homemade garlic mayo (£5) or sticky ox cheek with shallot puree and parsnip crisp (£6.50), followed by top notch, straight talking pub grub classics such as ale and treacle glazed gammon steak with proper chips and a couple of fried eggs (£10) or a good, no-nonsense homemade steak and ale pie (£11).
They’re also doing hearty sandwiches for those perhaps just passing through mid-hike (they’re pro muddy walking boots and dogs are welcome in the bar area), including a proper fish finger one with tartare sauce and a few chips (£6.50.) Like the chef himself, this looks like a pub with high standards but few pretentions. You can wash it all down with a range of real ales (three J W Lees pumps and one guest ale pump), lagers and wines.
They promise a decent Sunday lunch at the end of a pleasant drive into the countryside but as of yet, there’s no sign of the crispy squirrel dish ROB’s well known for. No doubt he’ll be bringing Manchester eggs, Vimto trifle and Eccles cakes with Lancashire cheese to t’other side, but we just hope his Yorkshire puddings are up to scratch, or they’ll be chasing him back over the border.
The Hinchliffe – Country Pub & Dining Cragg Vale, Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire, HX7 5TA