The winners of the Suffolk Food and Drink Awards 2024 have been announced, and this year The Fox and Goose in Fressingfield received the Front of House Experience Award, while The White Horse Inn in Badwell Ash earned the title of Pub/Bar of the Year.

Discover more about these two outstanding village pubs below.

Front of House Experience

Winner: The Fox and Goose

Independently run by Paul Yaxley since 2002, The Fox and Goose in Fressingfield offers relaxed and formal dining over two floors in five different areas. 

The pub and restaurant specialises in modern British cuisine in its restaurant and pub areas, created using as much local produce as possible and served in a comfortable and relaxed atmosphere.

The judges were pleased with their experience at the venue, saying “from the moment we arrived, the attention to detail of the customer experience shone through”.

They also praised the “thoughtful, respectful and relaxed service” from the staff, adding “you can tell that they genuinely care”.

Paul Yaxley, owner of The Fox and Goose, said he was “overjoyed for the recognition” of this award.

When asked what the award means for the team, he said: “It’s made them feel immensely proud and valued by what they do. We all enjoy our work but to be told you’re great at a prestigious awards is really nice.

“It’s great to be recognised for the hard work put in.”

Finalist: Husk

Chef Katy Taylor welcomes every guest as they come through the door to the Husk supper club in Thorington.

The table plan is considered ahead of guests arriving to ensure regular customers have different seats each time. 

The service is functional and precise, and everything is served with a smile. Katy and fellow chef Joey O’Hare talk diners through each course with special attention to the provenance of each dish. 

Finalist: The Bell Hotel, Saxmundham

Following a £1 million renovation in 2022, The Bell Hotel in Saxmundham seamlessly combines modern comfort with historic charm. 

Guests enjoy Hypnos mattresses, a restaurant serving fresh seafood and local produce, the inviting Coast Lounge and the dog-friendly River Bar. 

Whether it’s a romantic getaway, a corporate stay or a family weekend, the hotel’s location makes it perfect for exploring Suffolk’s coastal gems, historic towns and Framlingham Castle. 

Finalist: The Lion

Many of the small team have worked at The Lion since it opened in 2020, and the majority live in East Bergholt or the surrounding area. 

This has allowed staff to build a great rapport with repeat guests, while also welcoming those who are new to the area.

Communication is key to ensuring all team members are ready for service.

The Lion’s wine supplier also regularly trains the team members in food/wine pairing.

Pub/Bar of the Year

Winner: The White Horse Inn, Badwell Ash

The White Horse Inn, situated in Badwell Ash, serves as a freehouse and destination gastropub. 

Blending historic charm with modern sophistication, it’s ideal for all the family, including furry companions. 

The inn boasts a refined restaurant and a laid-back bar and lounge, creating a comfortable and inviting atmosphere. 

The culinary team takes pride in using locally sourced ingredients, supporting regional suppliers and crafting freshly prepared, modern gastronomic delights. 

The judges loved the décor and ambience, and praised the wide range of food during their lunchtime visit. They highlighted the quality of the service and said each dish was “well-presented, well-cooked and tasty.”

The White Horse Inn’s general manager, Lauren Taylor-Balls, said that the team was “delighted” to receive the award.

She went on to discuss the pub’s “commitment to progress, ensuring our guests experience unparalleled hospitality, a diverse beverage repertoire, and fresh cuisine crafted from locally sourced ingredients”.

“This accolade stands as a testament to the dedication of our team and the unwavering support of our community,” she continued. “We extend our heartfelt gratitude to all who have contributed to our success.”

Finalist: Queens Bar & Grill

Queens Bar & Grill is an independent pub and smokehouse in Bury St Edmunds.
Lamb and pork are raised on its own smallholding, where it also grows some of its own vegetables. 

The team is passionate about food, which is why everything is homemade, including all the sauces and burger buns. They also serve signature cocktails which can be enjoyed in its lovely garden.

Finalist: The Ship Inn

The Ship Inn is a Grade II listed thatched pub, nestled next to the church in Levington, overlooking the River Orwell.

The large beer garden features a pirate ship play area, pony parking and a large patio with seating surrounded by planters and hanging baskets.

The Ship is the perfect location for everything from a quick pint and sandwich after a long muddy dog walk, to a venue for a milestone celebration. 

Finalist: The Bull Inn, Woodbridge

The Bull is a historic coaching inn in the heart of Woodbridge. Providing 14 en-suite rooms, it aims to provide a friendly and welcoming atmosphere for guests.

The business has been subject to a significant re-development over the last five years, including an interior and exterior refurbishment, and a step-change improvement in its food and drink proposition.

The owners are passionate about great food and drink, and aim for a restaurant-quality dining experience.

To find out more about all the winners, please click here.

For more information on the Suffolk Food and Drink Awards, please visit