Young Thais are drawn by the big city lifestyle
Fans of cider and beer should sign up for the 10 hour Match Made in Heaven trail, which takes in Ampleforth Abbey. Founded in 1802, the abbey is home to a 70-strong brotherhood who were content to make juice from the orchard's abundant apples and plums until a visionary German monk named Father Rainer Verborg arrived in 2001. True to Benedictine rules of self-sufficiency, Father Rainer saw the future in apple cider and brandy, damson, sloe and elderberry gin. On a tour of the orchard and cider mill, manager Cameron Smith explains how they now produce 25,000 litres of cider a year from 2,000 trees bearing 48 different varieties of apple; some of which, such as the 300-year-old native Ribston Pippin, are extremely rare. A tasting of the excellent ciders, liqueurs and full-bodied, Trappist-style beer in the onsite Windmill Pub concludes the tour on a high spirited note.
Yorkshire born and bred chef, cookbook author and proprietor of The Star Inn, Andrew Pern championed local and seasonal food long before they became buzzwords. Many of the Yorkshire Food Finder trails begin and end at his 14th-century inn, which is big on old-world charm with its wonky walls and low beams. A finalist in BBC2's Great British Menu, a TV series in which the country’s top chefs compete for the chance to cook a banquet, Pern takes sourcing seriously and cooks with flair and precision, dishing up specialities like pan-fried wild Whitby sea bass and 36-hour Ampleforth cider-braised pork belly. Dining by candlelight at the huge octagonal table in the Wheelhouse private dining room or in the eaves of the thatch is the perfect coda to one of the Yorkshire Food Finder trails, which are putting the moreish back into the moors.
Where to stay and eat
The Star Inn, Harome. This warm, woody 14th-century inn is a foodie bolthole. Eight rustic-chic rooms sport individual touches from rope-slung beds to jacuzzi bathtubs.
The Pheasant, Harome. Pared-down elegance rules at this hotel, with 14 rooms decorated in plaids, a garden duck pond and a restaurant putting a gastronomic twist on seasonal fare.
Butchers Arms, Hepworth. Chef Timothy Bilton serves everything from Greedy Little Pig Yorkshire pork to locally stalked venison under the beams at this cosy gastropub, which featured in the Last of the Summer Wine TV series.