Back in our teens and early twenties, we used to come for a drink at the pub quite often. In the five decades since then, this was only our third return visit. So what brought us on a forty minute drive? Well, the need for a change of scenery after a difficult few days. And the prospect of a pub lunch. Of course this is still an “outside the pub” lunch under an open-sided marquee. This may not have been our best ever call. Temperatures never got above 11 and, while we were eating, there was rain, hail and snow. Yes, it was cold. We were not the only ones braving the elements and several tables were occupied. Thankfully, the food made up for everything, with service being very much on the ball. My guess is that the menu will be more imaginative once they can fully open up inside in a couple of weeks
There was a goats cheese tart to start for one of us. Served warm, there was a crisp pastry and a quite moussey, mild cheese filling. It came with a handful of salady stuff. All pleasant enough. The other starter was a classic prawn cocktail, just as you’d expect – prawns, shredded lettuce, Marie Rose sauce. What’s not to like.
We both went with the same main course – also a classic. In this case, roast local beef. It’s a generous serving of very tasty meat, cooked to medium. And there’s an array of accompaniments. Two sorts of spud – roast and gratin. Cabbage, carrots, green beans and cauliflower cheese. Big Yorkshire pudding, holding the gravy (good gravy – not at all “canteeny”. It all did the business.
In different weather circumstances, we’d probably have had a pudding but it really had stopped being fun by this time. Although, as we left, we were still sort of chuckling at how we’d spent the previous hour. For our first meal out since the partial relaxation of Covid restrictions, this was not a bad effort. Not bad, at all.