AN EAST Lancashire pub is ‘knocking out minor miracles’.

That was the verdict of top food critic Jay Rayner following a surprise visit to the White Swan in Fence.


The critic, nicknamed ‘Acid Rayner’, visited the Wheatley Lane Road venue to review it for a national newspaper.

He wrote: “What matters most ... is the presence in the kitchen of a young chef named Tom Parker.

“Right now he’s giving a masterclass in how to craft tight, compact menus to a budget – just three choices at each course – without sacrificing flavour, inventiveness or wit.

“Some of what he’s serving here is a minor miracle.”

Tom said: “I wasn’t nervous because I’m sure about what we’re doing here – but I won’t pretend it isn’t a massive honour to have our food recognised by someone like Jay Rayner.”

And manager Jane Turner said: “I’d been upstairs doing paperwork and when I came down spotted a Jay Rayner lookalike in the restaurant.

“I told Tom and we debated if it could really be him, but we couldn’t understand what would he be doing in Fence?

“He was already on the main courses when I approached the table and saw him scribbling in a notebook. I can’t repeat what I said, but the first word was ‘Oh...’”