Hotel Review: The Black Bull, Sedbergh, Lake District, England


Husband and spouse staff James Ratcliffe and Nina Matsunaga purchased The Black Bull in 2018 when it was derelict, having been severely broken by flooding in 2015.  They have lovingly restored this historic teaching inn, preserving a lot of its authentic architectural options however including some modern aptitude and one of many prime eating places in Cumbria.

Who for

The Black Bull is for foodies: for those who don’t plan to spend fairly a number of hours of the day consuming right here, the expertise will probably be wasted on you! That stated, it’s also a terrific possibility for {couples} or households eager to stroll within the close by Lake District. If you spend all day strolling or climbing on the fells, you’ll work up an urge for food and deserve a three-course meal while you come again. 


luxurious bed room

Guest rooms at The Black Bull embody an expensive suite and a collection of double rooms, three of that are appropriate for company visiting with their canine. Some of the rooms within the historic a part of the teaching inn have authentic ceiling beams, wooden panelling, and stained glass.

The minimalist decor and furnishings replicate James and Nina’s love affair with Japanese design and tradition and are impressed by the weather of water and air. But there are many Cumbrian options, too: images by award-winning native photographer Rob Whittier adorn the partitions, and the blankets have been handwoven by Laura’s Loom in Sedbergh. 

In the bogs you’ll discover bespoke Petrichor toiletries, which have been designed completely for The Black Bull by The Sedbergh Soap Co. “Petrichor” is a phrase which comes from Ancient Greek and it describes the scent when the primary rain falls on dry soil or grass. The suite and two of the luxurious rooms have deep free-standing baths in addition to rain showers, and within the third luxurious room, there’s a Japanese soaking tub. 

Food and drink

The largest draw of The Black Bull is its nice eating restaurant, the place Nina created an distinctive menu fusing culinary influences drawn from her household heritage Japan, Germany the place she was born and skilled, and the Lake District which she now calls residence. Nina prioritises utilizing native breeds for her meats, and sources most of her substances from inside 20 miles of the restaurant. These embody mushrooms foraged by James. Expect to seek out dishes akin to handmade ravioli with asparagus and wild garlic; wild Lakeland venison with Hokkaido, tagliatelle, and three-cornered leek; and black sesame panna cotta with strawberries. The restaurant is good for individuals watching as the large home windows look straight onto Sedbergh’s excessive road. 

If you like a lightweight chunk or one thing extra informal, The Black Bull has a bar menu, too. This might be eaten both within the bar or the restaurant. The shorthorn roast beef and horseradish sandwich and Howgill Hereford beef burger seemed notably good, and the presence of a number of kids confirmed that James and Nina have created a family-friendly house widespread with locals. 

At the again of The Black Bull in what was as soon as the inn’s stables there’s a separate out of doors menu, a lot of which is cooked on the barbecue. All the dishes are seasonal and alter every day, however you possibly can look forward to finding issues like smoked pork sizzling canine and pulled Herdwick lamb, in addition to a collection of sourdough pizzas. 


Unusually for a property in central Sedbergh, The Black Bull has loads of parking on website, they usually may even prepare so that you can cost an electrical automotive. There’s additionally a sexy backyard to the rear of the constructing, which is a beautiful place to calm down and revel in a beer on a heat summer time night. 

How a lot

Classic Doubles at The Black Bull begin from £139 per night time, together with breakfast, or you possibly can deal with your self to a room with breakfast and dinner for 2 from £199. 

What’s close by

The Black Bull is true in the midst of the historic city of Sedbergh, which has loads of impartial retailers to discover. Particularly advisable is Farfield Mill on the sting of the city, which has been transformed into artists’ studios, galleries, and a restaurant. Here you possibly can watch printmakers, weavers, and different artisans at work, chat to them about what they’re doing, and purchase their merchandise. 

Sedbergh can be properly situated for strolling and sightseeing in each the Yorkshire Dales and the Lake District National Park. It’s a straightforward drive to Kendal and to Kirkby Lonsdale, and likewise to Sizergh, a home and beautiful gardens owned by the National Trust. 

VERDICT: James and Nina have executed a very exceptional job bringing The Black Bull again to life. The restaurant alone makes it price a visit to Sedbergh, although the rooms are stunning, too. 

Source: www.thetravelmagazine.web