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Review: The White Lion, Radford Semele

I first visited this pretty thatched country pub when it reopened its doors following a refurbishment last summer.

At the time, The White Lion had just become the latest member of the award-winning Peach Pubs stable, joining the likes of The Rose and Crown in Warwick, Star and Garter in Leamington, The Almanack in Kenilworth and The One Elm in Stratford.

Today, the style and décor look just as fresh as ever – contemporary while also staying sensitive to the building’s historic features. I recall how stunning the exposed beams and brickwork are since being carefully restored and highlighted last year.

There are plenty of areas and corners in which to relax over your dinner, whether it be a family celebration or a cosy romantic nook you’re after. And at the rear of the restaurant benefits from a garden room which looks out over a spacious outdoor extension to the dining room – for those finer afternoons and evenings. (Unlike ours unfortunately) The bi-fold doors though ensure you’re always bathed in light and can still enjoy a sense of the great outdoors – indoors.

A spacious curved pergola and sheltered dining space at the end of the garden are also available for private hire, which I’m sure must be a popular feature.

So what’s new at The White Lion?

There is a set lunch menu at The White Lion, served Monday to Friday, excluding Bank Holidays. It's fantastic value at one course for £14.50, two courses for £18.00 and three courses for £21.50.

Other potential diary dates with the girls or work colleagues, include Fizz Fridays from 5-7pm with £10 off all bottles of sparkling wine; Posh Fish & Chip Fridays; and Saturday and Sunday breakfast from 9am, with classics alongside modern favourites; Sunday Best with top-quality beef from Aubrey Allen, Jimmy Butler’s free-range pork and a delicious vegetarian wellington, with all the trimmings.

There are plenty of fun new arrivals on The White Lion’s cocktails list too - from the deliciously different Praline Martini, a velvety combination of Cotswolds cream liqueur, chocolate hazelnut, Martel V.S. Cognac and Ketel One vodka, to the Banana Colada with Discarded Banana Rum made by infusing Caribbean rum with banana peel for a rich banoffee pie character, combined with Havana Club 7-Year Old Rum, pineapple and coconut.

Our most recent visit, for dinner, did not disappoint. Despite the impressive Menu offering a wide and tempting variety, The Specials Board still proved a distraction for two of us with hubby opting for both his Starter (Cornish Muscles with white wine cream sauce and garlic bread - £9.50) and Main (The White Lion’s own take on a Chippy Tea of battered haddock, seabream and monkfish scampi, triple cooked chips, pea puree and tartare sauce - £21.50). While I couldn’t resist the Cornish Lamb Parvé with pea puree, baby onions, baby fondant potatoes and jus. (£26).

All were polished off with gusto, while my son stayed true to the main menu and certainly had no regrets with his choice of 14-hour Braised Beef & Ale Pie, buttered mash, greens and gravy. (£16.75)

There’s a comprehensive cheeseboard selection available, with a choice of either five cheeses (for £13) or three (for £8.50) or even a ‘smidgen’ of cheese with your choice of tea or coffee, for £6.50. This proved a fitting finale to my husband’s meal after finding himself too full to appreciate a sweet dessert – as tempting as they looked.

Not so for myself and my son though who devoured Treacle Tart and Clotted Cream (8.50) – from the Specials Board – and Salted Caramel & Chocolate Tart, honeycombe, crème fraiche (£9) from the main menu, respectively. The Treacle Tart was a nostalgic throwback to my childhood when it was a favourite family treat, and unlike back in the day, wasn’t too sweet!

Look out for. . . On Thursday 24th August, Head Chef Stefan will be sharing his love of Spanish food with his special Spanish Supper. For one night only, he’ll be bringing some of his favourite tapas dishes to the terrace, from croquetas de jamón to patatas bravas, paella and tortilla.

A year-on the new incarnation of The White Lion continues to deliver on all fronts, from food and service to décor and ambience.

[Items in this article may have been gifted to Chatting Food. No financial payment has been

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Amanda Chalmers

Amanda is a journalist of 30 years and now runs an award-winning PR agency based in Warwickshire. When she's not writing about her own clients she loves to help spotlight the great work of other pubs, restaurants and hotels around the country.


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