The Leathern Bottle
Pubs and Bars with Restaurants
Nestled in a quiet village at the foot of the Chilterns, The Leathern Bottle is everything you could wish for in a country pub. Whether you walk down from the hills, turn off the M40 in need of a break, or arrive as a seasoned regular (as many of the clientele clearly do), you will receive a heartfelt welcome. 'Ye Olde Leathern Bottel' dates from the 16th Century. It has been in the same family for over three decades; for Julie and Leslie Gordon it is their home and way of life, and they run it with charm, friendliness and unstinting time and attention. Their food is homemade with quality fresh ingredients, flavoured with herbs from the garden, and portions are satisfyingly generous. A snack could set you up for an afternoon on the Ridgeway - perhaps sirloin steak baguette with onion rings, or home-cooked ham with free-range eggs (both served with chips) - while a whitebait starter or a tomato and mozzarella salad would provide a delightful accompaniment to a refreshing 'bottel' of Petit Chablis (although you could happily mix and match, because all wines are available by the glass). The reasonably priced mains, served at lunch and in the evening, are substantial and range from homemade burgers to a Thai green curry, or roasted red pepper and spinach lasagne. Should you have room for pudding, you'll find such treats as sherry trifle or chocolate fudge cake. Everything is beautifully presented yet unpretentious, and this is one of the many reasons why those 'in the know' keep returning. Children have their own menu and entertainment in abundance, with swings, slides, resident dogs (friendly to all, human or canine) and a petanque pitch outside. Julie and Leslie have just been awarded the 'Brakspear Outstanding Performer Award' - well deserved indeed. Sit in the sun, look up to the hills where the red kites soar, or tuck by a winter fire to unthaw, and let The Leathern Bottle remind you what life is really about.