THE WEEKEND: In the heart of the Cotswolds, close to the picturesque town of Stow-on-theWold, Daylesford Organic Farm is perhaps the country’s poshest farm shop. Owner Carole Bamford, founder of the Bamford wellness brand and Daylesford, has now launched The Fox at Oddington, a ‘pub with rooms’ in a renovated 16th-century pub. It’s made up of a series of downstairs rooms, located around a central bar, and six elegantly designed bedrooms. With countryside walks on the doorstep, The Fox welcomes you back after a blustery day with roaring fires and hearty fare. Like Bamford’s other countryside inn – the Wild Rabbit, which is found a short walk away in Kingham – The Fox champions the revival of the traditional countryside inn.
The pub’s renovation used specialist craftsmen who used centuries-old techniques to restore the Cotswold stone walls and to insulate the roofs with sheep’s wool from Daylesford’s organic farm. The building’s origins as an ancient watering-hole have been celebrated with flagstone floors underfoot, wonky beams overhead and antique furniture in the form of beautifully-worn farmhouse chairs. “Our aim is to leave the lightest imprint on our planet while creating unique spaces filled with warmth and character,” says the Bamford family and it feels true.
THE STAY: Away from the bedrooms there are a warren of rooms to while away the hours. To the right of the main bar is the cosy Tack Room and The Parlour. Wood-panelled walls are painted a dark forest green, while vintage horse paintings and colourful rosettes, tacked up on the overhead beam, give a nod to equestrian pursuits. Barescrubbed tables and a mismatch of antique benches and chairs keep things simple. The ‘For Fox’s Sake’ bar is stocked with local ales and house cocktails made with seasonal ingredients. You can also try one of the wines crafted at Daylesford’s sister estate Château Léoube in the South of France. The six bedrooms have a rustic-chic aesthetic with interiors inspired by countryside life. They are also all ‘suite’ in style, meaning that they come with separate living areas, which is pretty special considering The Fox at Oddington is essentially a pub.
In the bathroom there’s an exciting line-up of Bamford products including Geranium body wash and Marjoram and Lavender pillow spray
The Wild Meadow is one of the most spacious. The bedroom is dominated by a pretty fourposter bed, adorned with curtains made in a traditional Indian handloom fabric. Framed floral prints by Hugo Guinness and views over a living roof planted with British wildflowers and herbs give a further nod to the nature beyond the window. In the bathroom there’s an exciting line-up of Bamford products including Geranium body wash and Marjoram and Lavender pillow spray.
THE FOOD: The main restaurant is found in the Saddle Room, which has exposed stone walls, reclaimed stable doors to divide booths and leather saddles used as decoration. Overseeing the open kitchen – which is emblazoned with the word ‘Foxylicious’ – is head chef, Alan Gleeson, who has created a seasonal menu with the freshest ingredients from Daylesford Organic and Wootton Estate. Highlights include the smoked lardo flatbread with anchovy and salsa verde and the whole Cornish Plaice, with Ratte potatoes, fine beans and seaweed butter. Sourdough pizzas, baked in a wood-fired oven, are elevated with Fior di Latte, aubergine caponata and mushrooms a la Greque. Make sure you leave room for desserts which are all riffs on classics: from the vanilla cheesecake, with Daylesford Organic damsons, to the sticky date pudding with toffee sauce.
Visit The Fox at Oddington yourself
Rooms start from £225 per night with breakfast; visit the website to book
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