Star at Sancton, Market Weighton
Don’t be fooled by the plain exterior of this roadside pub two miles south of Market Weighton on the southern edge of the Wolds, one of the gentlest, unspoiled corners of Yorkshire. It belongs to Ben and Lindsey Cox who bought it eight years ago, knocked it about a bit and created a relaxed but stylish restaurant.
The food is a clever mix of gutsy, regional and seasonal dishes but given a light touch. For starters you might go for sauteed wood pigeon and pea puree or black pudding, bacon and poached egg or as we did, Filey crab topped with brown shrimps and broad beans with a puree of avocado on the side. Equally delicious was a crisp little filo tart filled with sweet onions, yellow courgette, tomato and Lowna Dairy goat’s cheese.
For mains, there are trusties like duck breast, fillet steak, and liver and bacon but we were drawn to roast coley with a perfect pea and Parmesan risotto and our best dish, appropriately for the heartland of Yorkshire pig production, was a piece of slow, slow braised belly pork served with roast shallots, Chantenay carrots, some seriously crackly crackling and last but not least a model gravy.
There are two non-meat choices at each course with not a knee-jerk risotto in sight. Instead, enjoy sautéed wild mushrooms on fried eggy bread with a herb salad, Lincolnshire Poacher cheese and tomato confit.
Puddings are commendably good, too. We had a perfectly timed chocolate fondant oozing liquid chocolate served with vanilla ice cream; and a wickedly sweet caramel cheesecake with banoffee ice cream.
Décor is neither cutting edge modern nor wholly traditional but smart and neat with deep red banquettes and some exposed brick.
A well balanced wine list touches all bases with twenty by the glass. And if £7/£8 for a starter and £14 upwards for a main looks a tad pricey for a pub meal there are plenty of cheaper options available in the bar and a £17 three course Sunday lunch. From Artisan in Hessle to the Pipe and Glass at South Dalton there’s plenty stirring in this corner of East Yorkshire. Add the Star to the constellation.