It is a cool misty afternoon in April. Tall pine trees swish in the breeze as we drive to The Wicked Lady passing by hundreds of bright yellow daffodils.
This contemporary pub and restaurant is located opposite No-man’s land, near Wheathampstead. The plan was to go for a walk across the historic common but we had to shelve that when we got out of the car and noticed that, instead of wellies, I was still wearing my heels! My husband is greatly amused that the city girl in me is still so out of her depth in the countryside.
I love the cream coloured sign with the black silhouette of a 3 cornered highwayman hat pretty dark eyes and long lashes of a seductive lady, and can imagine her in her breeches, mask and riding cloak leaping out in front of a carriage from the darkness and yelling “Stand and deliver!”
The pub is named after Katherine Ferrers, a 17th Century French gentlewoman and property heiress; an aristocratic lady by day and a highway woman by night. Sole heir to her father’s fortune, Katherine became as notorious as her male peers, many also bereft of their fortunes, and came into highway robbery in order to redress her fast-dwindling inheritance taken from her by her husband once her father had died.
On a dark night, this route to and from London presented a great opportunity for highway robbery. Various films and books have been made retelling Ferrers’ life story. Local legend says that she haunts the common and her ghost can still be seen on occasion galloping wildly on a black horse.
After a long country walk, The Wicked Lady is the ideal place to come and relax into the comfy velvet armchairs under the low Tudor ceiling. It is refurbished to the hilt, and is the perfect venue to impress guests with a stylish evening dinner or just some tasty pub food. With its luxury interior and sophisticated ambience, it almost feels as if I could be in the heart of Mayfair and I must admit, maybe feels a bit urban for a traditional pub in the middle of the Hertfordshire countryside.
There is a huge selection of wines and ales; my husband tries the Pravha while I go for a fresh pineapple juice. We order our food. I choose a melted cheese and red pepper baguette and my husband opts for a grilled steak-sandwich with all the trimmings served with a little pot of chips and served on a wooden board.
Next time, I imagine having a nice Sunday roast here, relaxing with a beer in my hand and my wellies covered in mud after a long woodland walk (that is if I remember to bring them)!
http://marisalaycock.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/imgID125225498.jpg.gallery.jpg1681200misarocks31http://marisalaycock.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/MSLlogoWb-300x69.pngmisarocks312018-04-25 00:00:062018-07-05 20:32:49A country pub