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The Star Inn in Sparsholt to reopen after extensive refurbishment programme


The Star Inn in Sparsholt to re-open after extensive refurbishment programme
The historic Star Inn in Sparsholt will reopen an extensive revamp by the team behind The Woodspeen – Newbury’s Michelin-starred restaurant.

The historic Star Inn in Sparsholt will reopen on Wednesday 15 June after an extensive programme of refurbishment carried out by the team behind Newbury’s Michelin-starred restaurant, The Woodspeen.

Dating from 1720, the Star Inn is at the heart of the quintessential Oxfordshire village of Sparsholt. It combines a bar with an 60 cover restaurant and beautiful gardens bordered by a stream. Next to the garden is a separate barn offering eight boutique style bedrooms.

Both the interiors and the gardens of the beautiful 18th-century building have been redesigned by the out Chris Bagot Architects – the architects behind The Woodspeen’s own stunning interiors – and the result is a warm, welcoming contemporary space combining a bar and a restaurant with 60 covers.

For now, the cosy boutique rooms will be available for booking during the summer (until the end of August). However, the eight rooms will be closed between September and November to be transformed into luxury suites, designed again by Chris Bagot Architects. Expect beautiful luxurious rooms with plenty of creature comforts.

The involvement of Woodspeen means that The Star Inn’s restaurant is likely to become a destination for food lovers, with a menu created by Woodspeen’s Executive Chef Peter Eaton. As well as retaining the Woodspeen’s one Michelin star rating for the past eight years, Peter has cooked at some of Britain’s most lauded restaurants, including Le Manoir Aux Quat’ Saisons.

Woodspeen’s Executive Chef Peter Eaton
Woodspeen’s Executive Chef Peter Eaton

The Woodspeen is renowned for being ‘consistently good in everything it does’ according to restaurant guide Hardens, and reviewers have praised it for its precise and elegant cooking. At The Star Inn, that elegance will be on display in menus that feature seasonal and local produce.

The Woodspeen’s Managing Director Alessandro Fasoli, said: “As soon as we heard The Star Inn was available, we leapt at the chance to take over what was already a great restaurant and sprinkle a bit of Woodspeen magic on it.

“Sparsholt is a beautiful and quintessentially English village, and the restaurant and surroundings are stunning. We’ve taken a great deal of care to retain the charm of The Star but also to inject some glamour. The new interiors are effortlessly comfortable and modern, with an emphasis on natural materials, simplicity, honesty and craftsmanship.

“Great food and hospitality will be at the heart of what we do. We will also be serving fantastic cocktails and draft beers. We’re renowned for our wines at the Woodspeen too, so expect a great wine list.

“We are really looking forward to re-launching The Star Inn for the fantastic local community, as a destination for food lovers and anyone who is looking for a rural escape in one of Britain’s most beautiful areas of countryside. We can’t wait to open our doors and to extend the level of service and quality of cooking that we offer at The Woodspeen to a brand new venue.”

Located just north of the B4507 Wantage to Ashbury road, about three miles west of Wantage, The Star Inn in Sparsholt is open from noon until 11.00pm on Wednesdays to Saturdays and from noon until 5.00pm on Sundays.

Typical disches include Devon white crab Tartlet, crème fraiche, peas and radish; Roasted loin of lamb, spiced aubergine, sheep’s yoghurt, mint salsa verde, lamb jus; Roasted halibut, peas, broad bean, potato terrine, bacon, white wine sauce; Côte de boeufe to share, crispy lemon gnocchi, tenderstem broccoli, broccoli and basil purée, Bordelaise sauce; and Strawberry and elderflower tart, sorrel sorbet.

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