Eat, drink and be merry

26 July 2011

New bar and restaurant offers at the RSC

  • Launch of Swan Bar as all-day venue, with new selection of lagers, wines and ales.
  • Make-overs for Theatre Bars and new furniture for al-fresco refreshments.
  • Just desserts – post-show puddings in the Rooftop Restaurant & Bar.

The Swan Bar – a new all-day venue and new look for Theatre bars

The Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) has announced that exciting changes are underway in its Rooftop Restaurant and Theatre Bars in Stratford-upon-Avon this summer, beginning with the launch of the Swan Bar as an all-day venue.

A relaxing bolt-hole in the heart of Stratford, the atmospheric Swan Bar features new, comfortable leather sofas and armchairs and is the perfect place to get away from the crowds for a quiet pint while reading a newspaper. The bar will also have a relaxed and eclectic music policy that will always provide the perfect backdrop to your visit, whatever the time of day or night.

The Swan Bar was previously only open for pre-show and interval drinks but is now open seven-days-a-week, from midday until late, Monday – Saturday, and midday – 6pm on Sundays.

Guests in the Swan Bar will be able to enjoy an extended range of new lagers, a selection of wines from Berry Bros & Rudd, with an Enomatic system allowing people to enjoy fine wines by the glass, and a range of ales, including Mad Goose from local brewer Purity Ales, as well as Flower's Original IPA.

The Upper Circle Bar and Scott Bar have also received a new look, with new tables and chairs lining these spaces. The Upper Circle and Scott Bars are staffed around shows but will now provide a comfortable spot for visitors enjoying other activities in the building to take a break throughout the day.

Commenting, the RSC's Head of Catering, Rob Fredrickson, said: 'The new way in which the Swan Bar will operate is very exciting for us and we are looking forward to welcoming our local community, those seeing shows and visiting Stratford, and our staff and actors alike to enjoy the new range of drinks on offer in this historical setting.

'The new furniture in the other Theatre Bars is also great news for us and having additional seating in these spaces will be perfect for those looking for a relaxing place to sit and take in the buzz of the building, or enjoy refreshments from our Riverside Cafe.'

Riverside Cafe and al-fresco seating
The Riverside Cafe offers a selection of freshly made sandwiches, salads and cakes in a lovely setting alongside the River Avon. The range has recently been extended to include cakes, shortbreads and biscuits from local Artisan bakery, Meg Rivers, based in Shipston on Stour.

As well as seating on the Riverside Terrace, there is now new furniture on the Bancroft Terrace, giving visitors an additional location to enjoy al-fresco refreshments while taking in the views of the river and gardens.

New menus and post-show puddings in Rooftop Restaurant & Bar
Changes are also underway in the Rooftop Restaurant & Bar, with the introduction of a new post-show pudding service. This is available for people attending evening performances to pre-book as part of a fixed-price meal, or people can walk in to enjoy the service.

Guests can take advantage of an extensive new cocktail menu launched by the RSC's Bar Team, featuring timeless classics such as the Mojito and Manhattan Martini, as well as new signature cocktails, including the Rooftop Sling, with Calvados, apricot brandy and cherry.

Rob said: 'The Rooftop Restaurant is a fantastic space, with menus to suit a variety of diners, whether they are there to see a show, out for a relaxed evening meal or coming for a family gathering or Sunday lunch.

'The addition of an evening post-performance service in the restaurant is ideal for those who have enjoyed a one or two-course pre-theatre meal, or those who simply fancy a coffee and dessert after the show or an evening out in Stratford.'

July and August have seen the introduction of new menus for the Rooftop Restaurant, with the finest seasonal ingredients to create appetising dishes such as Cotswold Charcuterie Selection with Pickles, Roast Pollock Rarebit with Spinach, Smoked Garlic Polenta Cake with Late Summer Vegetables and Plum Duff with Pouring Custard.

Younger diners are also well catered for in the Rooftop Restaurant, with the 'Little Menu' full of fresh flavours and various options, including Cream of Chicken Soup, Little Fish Pie with Cheesy Mash and Banoffee Pie or Strawberry Pavlova.

Date of Issue: 26.07.11

Notes to editors:

  • The Roofop Restaurant and Theatre Bars opened in November 2010 following the Transformation of the Royal Shakespeare and Swan Theatres.
  • Opening hours:
    • Rooftop Restaurant: 11.30am – 11pm Monday to Saturday, midday – 6pm Sunday.
    • Riverside Cafe: 9am – last interval Monday to Saturday, 10am – 6pm Sunday
    • Swan Bar: From Midday – late Monday to Saturday, midday to 6pm Sunday
    • Scott Bar, Ruinart Circle Bar and Upper Circle Bar: 60 minutes pre- show and during intervals.
  • The new post-show pudding service is available in the Rooftop Restaurant from the time the last curtain goes down following evening performances, with last orders being taken 30 minutes after this time.
  • For menus and more details, visit
  • The Rooftop Restaurant was highly commended in the 2011 Junior Design Awards in the category of 'Best Family Restaurant,' alongside Giraffe, with Pizza Express Living Lab as the overall category winner. The Junior Design Awards recognise excellence in design and style.

For further information about the Rooftop Restaurant, please contact Philippa Harland or Anna McNeil in the RSC's press office: /

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