The prestigious awards ceremony, which took place last week (28 January) at Lillibrooke Manor in Maidenhead, Berkshire, celebrated a decade of the awards while celebrity chef Tom Kerridge cooked lunch.
Many of the pubs on the list have been firm features since Top 50 Gastropubs’ inception 10 years ago. This includes Andrew Pern’s Michelin-starred the Star Inn, Harome, on the edge of the North Yorkshire moors, which ranked number one in 2017.
Judges said staff at the victorious Punch Bowl Inn at Crosthwaite, Cumbria, were friendly and knowledgeable with a sincere passion about the pub.
They added that the venue had a fantastic array of delicious dishes and a great variety of drinks, alongside a warm and inviting atmosphere.
Punch Bowl Inn owner Richard Rose said: “We are delighted and very proud of all the members of staff at the pub, they are the people who won this, not me.
“Tears of joy were in my eyes when our name was announced. This means so much to the staff, it is special for them.
“[Winning] helps recruit staff and keep the staff you’ve got as it gives them the momentum and a pride and joy in what they do.”
Estrella Damm Top 50 Gastropubs editor Nicholas Robinson lauded the pub and outlined how it impressed the judges of the award.
He said: “The Punch Bowl Inn is an incredible pub with a team that has a real passion for hospitality and judges were wowed by their dedication.
“The dishes are well thought out and curated using the best ingredients available in the stunning area the pub is situated in.”