Hinderwell, just south of Staithes, may be pretty much a one-street village but that street has two good pubs. The unusually-named Badger Hounds is the larger of the pair and incorporates the village post office and shop, but a few yards away, you’ll find the Brown Cow.
The easily-deterred may cavil at the admittedly tired exterior but anyone who knows their pubs knows that the Brown Cow has everything a great Yorkshire boozer needs. There are rooms with aged-but-comfy chairs, there are a couple of aged-but-friendly bar-keeps and the regulars found lining the bar are always ready with a cheeky word of welcome.
Being just off the Cleveland Way, the pub’s walls are lined with maps, but much more space is dedicated to darts, with a board given pride of place in both the bar and lounge, trophies displayed on every shelf and a stack of spare boards lent in the corner in case of emergencies.
Best of all is the food. The meat comes from the fabulous butcher across the road so the gammon steaks are big and juicy and the steak pie has masses of Guinness-soaked beef beneath its suet-heavy crust. There are prawns and scampi from Whitby. Proper grub at decent prices.
Add to this the real fire, sleeping village cat and Sunday evening quiz and you have a godsend of a pub to happen across on a cold winter’s day. It’s also dog-friendly, providing the cat is agreeable.
Open: Mon to Sat, 11-12am; Sun 12pm-12am. 55 High Street, Hinderwell TS13 5ET. 01947 849694.
DRINKS SELECTION 3/5