We’re just back from our two week Christmas break on the coast at Staithes near Whitby. A fortnight of eating, drinking and overindulging and with everything the British weather could throw at us. Wind that sent wheelie bins clattering down the High Street. Rain that sheeted across the staith and remarkably benign days of sunshine and heart-stopping sunrises.
Highlights: The beautiful free range goose supplied by our local butcher, Richard and Marianne Lyth. Never mind David Hockney, they deserve the Order of Merit for years of serving the little community of Staithes day in day out in their traditional butcher’s shop.
Tea and cake after a cold and windy walk along the Cleveland Way at the lovely Ship Inn, Port Mulgrave. Log fire, Sunday papers, comfy sofa’s and delicious orange cake. Whisky Macs all round at the cosy Fox and Hounds in Dalehouse among thickly varnished settles, horse brasses and Black Sheep on tap, everything an English pub should be.
Greens of Whitby the seafood restaurant run by Rob Green and his wife Emma Stothard. We’d nipped into Whitby on an errand parked up by the Abbey and ended up having a two hour lunch. Packed out it was with everyone ordering fish after the meat excesses of Christmas. Naturally we couldn’t miss out on Rob Green’s unimprovable salt and pepper squid with lime and chilli mayonnaise and a whole red mullet special with Moroccan cous cous. And the main courses… let’s say that they made 199 steps feel like 1,999 but in a very good way. The seafood linguini was a gorgeous compendium of chunky shellfish. The Thai seafood ragout would have fed the fleet. Can’t remember the name of the smoky Sauvignon Blanc that Emma recommended but two large glasses seem to have slipped by. Our quick bite turned into a memorable blow-out for £73. Got lucky with the parking ticket, too.
Our final highlight, driving home across the North York Moors and the most glorious sunset.