A short drive from Stonehenge, this quintessential English pub is run with unpretentious warmth by committed owners Guy and Brittany Manning and their close-knit team. The couple – who met while working in a New York restaurant – are incredibly hands-on in the day-to-day running, including overseeing the menus in the restaurant and 12-seater dining room upstairs. Head chef Daniel Barker prepares wonderful dishes such as the signature roast chateaubriand of Wiltshire beef for two with hand-cut chips and sauce béarnaise, while Brittany whips up laminated pastries for breakfast (the eggs Benedict is another must-try) using butter that is hand-churned weekly by Guy’s father. The personal, family-run feel continues at Troutbeck, their converted bungalow turned guest house across the road which contains five chic bedrooms (the Manser room is dog friendly). Each has a private deck overlooking the idyllic River Avon, where you can fish for trout. Thatched and pretty as a picture, the Red Lion Freehouse is also popular with walkers and cyclists, and makes a great bolthole for anyone wanting to explore the countryside.
Doubles from £155
+44 (0)1980 671124; redlionfreehouse.com