16 : Ye Olde Starre Inne, York

40 Stonegate, York, North Yorkshire YO1 2AS
Ye Olde Starre Inne claims to be York's oldest licensed inn, dating back to 1644. As you would expect from an inn at the centre of a city like York, it is steeped in history. There are records of the inn being used by the roundheads as a hospital and a morgue during the civil war. In 1662 it was purchased by Thomas Wyeville for £250. An indication of the very modest rise in property prices during earlier times is that when it changed hands again some 150 years later the price had only increased to £850! Today, this Grade II listed building is likely to be worth a little more than that. 

You enter the inn via a narrow passage which leads from Stonegate in the shadow of the mighty York Minster. A sign which spans Stonegate will help you locate the modest entry to the passage. The passage opens up to a small courtyard and then the old inn itself. Inside it has survived quite well. Plenty of wood and plenty of narrow passageways. I think there are four small rooms, but it is difficult to be sure. I entered one only to find a man sat working energetically on a mobile computer surrounded by papers. I am still not sure whether I had discovered an enterprising customer multi-tasking office work and beer drinking or I had wandered into a neighbouring accountants' office. 

Despite the name it is not too "olde-worlde" nor is it a tourist destination rather than a working pub. Undoubtedly there are eager tourists here, but beer and food are still well to the forefront and there is obviously a thriving local customer base. 

I tried a pint of Crop Circle which is brewed by the Hop Back brewery down in Wiltshire. A clean, hoppy bitter which has a pleasing taste, albeit a little fruity. Worth a visit, worth a pint.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

i just visited this pub last week and have lived in york for nearly 4 years now and i cant believe i have not been in this great traditional pub. i stayed and ate and it was delicious. i washed it down with a pint of tim taylors landlord. i have been back several times already . great pub !!!!