The Goose at Gamston, a surprising decent stop off in the hunt for Fish and Chips (on a Friday)

The Goose at Gamston is located on the edge of the housing estate just off the A52 on the roundabout where you cross into Morrisons. I guess that does not sound that glamorous but it is accurate. It is part of the Eating Inn group and so is one of many pubs in that chain serving up the same menu and fare up and down the country.

I am not a fan of the chain pub, but I am a fan of pub food and so when it was suggested that we hit the nearest pub for a quick bite of food I was not going to turn down the opportunity to stuff my face. I might be a food snob, but I am a bad one and like to eat like the honest man about town.

I drive past the Goose a lot at the moment as it is pretty close to my office, each time I see billboards advertising a breakfast deal, sometimes a lunch deal, and it always seems to be calling out to me to come in. Today though it was Alison’s choice, so I suggested going to the Gamston so that I could get some Fish and Chips, so I guess it was my choice, but I did let her drive me there (and erm pay) ūüôā

Cod and Chips

So as it was a Friday, we know¬†that can only mean one thing ‘Fish and Chips!’¬†which¬†I ordered!

I asked for¬†the “Hand Battered Cod with seasoned chips, tartare sauce, and your¬†choice of peas¬†or mushy peas”¬†from the seafood section.¬†Now I will admit that I did not read the menu properly I just said I would have “Fish and Chips”

It wasn’t my turn to pay for the MyFoodHunt lunch, so I left that to Alison to navigate the bar situation, and judging by her opinion of my stomach’s ability to consume I ended up with the “Large” portion. That was fine as I got a massive great big bit of excellent fish. Sadly it meant that I was not able to eat all the chips (such sacrilege)

I also made a mistake in not asking for the correct peas, there was a choice of peas or mushy peas, I should have asked for mushy ūüė¶

Catch of the Day?

The huge piece of Battered Cod was the star of the plate, I was so pleasantly surprised at how good it was: ‘I usually like Haddock, I normally despise eating in a chain pub, and I feel guilty about eating Cod’. Despite all of that I am going to say that the Battered Cod at the Goose at Gamston is well worth ordering. In fact I would like just a piece of Fish, leave all the other stuff off the plate.

It was so well cooked, the batter is light and crispy (a phrase often overused), the flesh of the fish was firm to the bite. moist, light and shiny white. It was really quite decent.

Even though it was huge I made sure that I ate it all in deference to any opportunity to scoff chips.

There was nothing wrong with the pot of heated up frozen peas on my plate, but I will never know if the mushy peas were worth coming in for and that makes me somewhat sad.

The chips were OK at best, the menu said seasoned? I had to add loads of salt and pepper and tramp juice (malt vinegar) to make them anywhere close to verging on exciting. I didn’t eat them all and felt no guilt leaving them.

All that was missing was a slice of bread and butter and a cup of tea. Well a man can dream, cannot one?

Seafood Menu

There was a lot to like about the Fish and Chips at the Goose especially when you consider that this is part of a chain, a fact that often twist the¬†knob upwards on my “being a snob about it dial” ūüôā

I can be a sanctimonious arse about stuff like that, but when I am hungry I will eat anywhere, and if I can squeeze a blog post in about that place even better ( I am so food shallow when it comes to copy)

I almost went for “The ultimate fish and chips” which was way more than just the name, this was billed as “Battered plaice fillet, battered scallop, wholetail scampi and breaded prawns, served with seasoned chips, mushy peas and tartare sauce”. My comment was that we were a long long away from the sea, so I wasn’t paying (or asking someone else to pay) ¬£11.29 for¬†a bag of stuff that I could get from Iceland or similar ūüôā or ūüė¶

I am not really much of a fan of the chain pubs, but you know what, on occasion they can throw out a little bit of a surprise. It just goes to show that there is no need to be too much of a snob about these things and everyone and everywhere has it’s place in mine and your MyFoodHunt worlds ūüôā

That Battered Fish was tasty, I am still thinking about it, so that has to be a good thing, does it not?

The Goose at Gamston is located at

Ambleside,
Gamston,
Nottinghamshire NG2 6NA

It is part of the Eating In group

Sunday Lunch at The Roundhouse – Roast Beef with all the trimmings! Mum’s 70th Birthday? no pressure then!

 

This weekend we were out in Nottingham on St George’s Day looking for a ‘proper’ Sunday Lunch, an English Sunday Lunch, one hopefully¬†featuring Roast Beef,¬†Roast Potatoes, Yorkshire Puddings and lots of veg with copious gravy!

It was hard work to find a decent one, harder than you would think, but finally we found one at The Round House, no surprise as I find that they do excellent food.

Before I start the review or rather the story (as you know I don’t do reviews I just eat stuff), I just have to say that when it comes to Sunday Lunch we all know how it is no-one cooks a better Sunday Lunch than your Mum does!

As it happens ūüôā I was here with my Mum,¬†AND¬†it was her 70th Birthday, we were celebrating her youth, So it had to be a good one! (No pressure then¬†to the Roundhouse )

Sunday Lunch Menu at Round House

There were a good selection of options on offer, we had it in mind to get Roast Beef and we had been all over the city hunting for a plate of said dish. It was good to see a wide selection that included all options; beef, lamb, pork and chicken, and even some veggie thing (I have friends who will love that and slaughter me for commenting)

You have no idea how hard it was to find Roast Beef to eat, we trawled all over and maybe that should be a MyFoodHunt story all of it’s own

Anyhow the lovely lady at the Round House walked over and asked gently if we had had a chance to look at the menu and if we were ready to order.

I¬†am not sure if she¬†had a chance to draw breath before we proclaimed “We want Roast Beef please!” (*and some beer and prosecco)

Roast Beef at the Round House

This is one ‘proper Roast Sunday Dinner’ and one fitting of the occasion. [editorial note ūüôā its not as good as Mum’s (I have to say that) but still great]

I love that I, or rather, we had a proper dinner, a proper plate packed with everything that you expect when you order a Sunday Lunch of Roast Beef.

I have to say that there is no messing around at The Round House when you get a meal. It is a real meat and two gravy place, but, with added decorum and plenty of class, and substance!

So you get plenty of thinly sliced and rolled beef, enough beef for a normal man I guess, if you are greedy like me, well you want more. We would get more at home ūüôā

The meat was good, pretty tasty and pretty well cooked, except I personally would like mine thicker cut and a bit more pink. It was so thin though I think that the pink would have fallen out

Veg wise it was all the classics and almost everything that I wanted on my Sunday Lunchtime plate. Potato wise there were a handful of small but nicely done Roasties, and buried deep beneath is all there was a small pile of creamy mash too.

There were two roasted parsnips that I really liked and I am not usually a fan. the carrots and cauliflower were cooked just perfectly for my liking. They are cooked to be still pretty firm without being raw, and you did need to use the gravy to help with the eating. Even the cabbage was good and I normally feel sad when I have to eat it. ūüôā

I am usually a peas, carrots, and broccoli man, but I was happy enough with my vegetable lot on this plate.

The two huge Yorkshire puddings did their best to take over as they dwarfed everything else on the plate, but as good as they were they couldn’t beat that tasty beef.

 

 

It was a most enjoyable afternoon in the Round House, as well as Sunday Lunch, I had two pints of Shipstones Bitter and Mum had a glass of Prosecco, all dispatched swiftly.

At the beginning I mentioned that no-one does a better Sunday Lunch that your Mum does and when you are taking your Mum out for Sunday lunch on her 70th Birthday! It is a tough call.

They did a great job and they didn’t even know that there was a job to be had, we were just two more punters looking for dinner, and we were treated really well, just as we would hope.

“Can we have¬†more gravy?”…” no problem at all!”

I would have liked to ask for more meat, but as I wasn’t at home I figured it was best not to chance my arm.

_______________________________________________

The Round House is located at

ROYAL STANDARD PLACE, NOTTINGHAM, NG1 6FS

You can check them out on Facebook and on Twitter

Check out the last review I wrote back in 2013.¬†“The Roundhouse in Nottingham ‚Äď Excellent Food and¬†Beer”

Time has passed by but happy to say that the place is just as good now as it was then!

 

 

 

 

The Crafty Crow – A right proper boozer with Pub Food and Real Ale – Another Fish and Chips Friday

The Crafty Crow in Nottingham up by the entrance to the Castle is one of those pubs that you really should go to more often. I myself am an infrequent visitor even when I am in town, but I feel that I do not do, or¬†have not¬†done,¬†this¬†place enough justice with the count of steps I have made across the threshold ūüė¶

It is one of those places that has a really great beer selection! An ever rotating list of ales is one of it’s most endearing features. I always have to try something new, as all too often the familiar and safe is not present on the bar when I peruse the offerings of the day.

Some Menu Items

When it comes to Friday evenings and when it come to pub food, I find myself to be a one Or two trick pony (not even sure that is a real saying? but we are rolling with it). More often than not I would be sitting there ordering their burger, but at the moment I have a bit of a downer on British Pub burgers as I have been spoilt with glorious burgers in the States for the best part of 6 months.

So…………

Fish and Chips however is a totally different beast (both literally and factually) and I found that a MyFoodHunt in the USA was an often fruitless exercise for this delectation, I have now decided to dedicate my end of week day to the joy of “Fish and Chips Friday!” (note: don’t worry there will still be many burgers consumed for the purposes of the blog ūüôā )

Fish, Chips, and Mushy Peas

The Fish and Chips at the Crafty Crow is a bit of a mixed bag, a bit of a work in progress. They looked¬†the business¬†on the plate, but I am sure that you are far more interested in the story of the eating than the vision ūüôā

The Fish itself is encased in a very lovely crisp beer batter coating, it had a great bite as you crunched your way through it. Inside the fish was solid, perhaps a bit grey, and perhaps a bit too wet. It did have good flavour though, meaty would be a good word. I could not tell you what sort of fish it was.

The chips are not really my sort¬†of thing, they are a bit too ‘steak fries’ and not really chip shop¬†chips or even pub chip shop chips. I did get a decent portion though so I shouldn’t complain too much. I wasn’t that bothered, but having said that they are ‘half’ of the “Fish and Chips Story” so should get equal billing on the bill board.

Mushy peas are also something that always excites me, I like to think I am quite the connoisseur ūüôā¬†¬†I love making Americans eat them! The ones that they serve here at the¬†Crafty Crow are a little bit different. I really liked them but I am not quite sure what¬†is going on. I found them to be a bit dryer, a bit more paste¬†like,¬†or even spreadable, than your traditional¬†mushy peas.

I like to think that was intentional and I am going to hold that thought until I next try them.¬†I could make a great pea and ham sandwich spread with them, but if you want the real thing go to Goose Fair ūüôā

Overall I liked and enjoyed eating my Fish, Chips and Mushy peas at The Crafty Crow, they were very filling and great as pub food, but I am not sure that I am quite infatuated enough to declare my love. If you are here and fancy some, then why not chance your heart?

The Chalk board outside the Crafty Crow¬†focuses your mind on beer, principally Real Ale and Craft¬†Beer. On their website it is a similar story where they tell us that ”

We are Magpie Brewery‚Äôs tap house but you‚Äôll find a lot more than just our own beers. In fact we are only dedicating three of our ten handpulls to our beers, the rest of the real ale selection will be on constant rotation and come from a wide range of interesting micro breweries from all over the country including of course several local breweries. ¬†Our aim is simple, provide the best independent food and drink we can find”

Pleasingly they also serve that food until 9pm which is a bonus of those of us who have to get from work all the way into town.

As I said up at the top I do like the Crafty Crow and need to come here more often.

One of my earlier blogs back in 2014 when it was just opening can be found here on the blog “The Crafty Crow ‚Äď Real Ale and Craft Beer and Local¬†Food”

I also came back and wrote about one of their breakfasts last¬†summer “Breakfast at The Crafty Crow ‚Äď Great Pub, Great¬†Food

Looking back at both gave me as much pleasure as the days I came in to sample and munch ūüôā

______________________

The Crafty Crow is located at 102 Friar Lane about a 5 minute walk from the Old Market Square Tram Stop.

Follow them on Twitter and Facebook to see what they are up to

 

Pub Lunch at The Framebreakers in Ruddington – Today’s Special was Homemade Lasagne

I always have to check out the Daily Specials board when we pop into The Frame Breakers for lunch, just to see if there are any ‘food nuggets of joy’ to be scoffed.

Today we were in luck as they had one of my favourite pub lunches the classic lasagne on offer, I was having some of that!

They said that their Homemade Beef Lasagne contained some ‘not so’ secret ingredients of Chorizo and Cottage Cheese, er ok, well I am still game for a try. It was listed as being served with a simple side salad all for just ¬£5.95. I added in a side of ‘chunky chips’ for another ¬£1.95,

Well why not it was a Friday and I like to treat myself on occasion (well quite a lot to be honest)

Homemade Lasagne

Nice and rustic¬†is probably¬†the most favourable description of how the Lasagne looked on my metal camping plate.¬†It certainly looked home made, I mean¬†it was not entering any lasagne beauty contest, and if it was, it was probably entered in the knobbly knees¬†group as opposed to the catwalk swimsuit section ūüôā

Having said that, lets be honest we are more interested in how it tasted, are we not?

I liked it a lot, it was all pretty simple and just what you hope for from a lasagne. There was an equal amount of meat sauce to go with the sheets of pasta, the top was nice and crispy but not crunchy. The addition of the cottage cheese was a bit of a weird one, but then it reminded me of the type of lasagne they serve up back in the USA where they add a lot of ricotta cheese. It kind of makes the sauce a bit creamier with just a bit of a tang.

I am not sure that I noticed the chorizo too much, which was probably a good thing as this was billed as a Beef lasagne, you did however get that little bit of spiciness and that hint of garlic. I think it maybe made the meat sauce just a little bit richer. Whatever it did, the sauce was certainly most tasty.

The side salad was a simple affair of chopped up leaf with diced up peppers, tomato, cucumber and ‘other stuff’. I added a load of hellmans onto mine and it worked a treat. The chunky chips also enjoyed bathing in that same mayo, and their¬†joy made my eating of them most pleasurable.

Beer

I had a pint of the lovely Frame Breaker beer from the Nottingham Brewery to wash all my lunch down. It was an inspired choice, even if I do say so myself (and I do). I understand that it is brewed just for the pub and it is best described as an easy drinking English bitter with a light malty taste.

It is your basic session ale and¬†a good choice if you are eating something that you don’t want to ruin the flavour of. It sorted me right out.

I really like The Frame Breakers in Ruddington, they have a really well priced menu and you can find some really nice treats at a great value.

Check out one of my other reviews from last year: “The Frame Breakers ‚Äď Excellent Pub Lunch with Great Food and Beer in¬†Ruddington” where I rave on and on about their burgers ūüôā

 

The Frame Breakers pub is located on the High Street in Ruddington at the cross roads with Kirk Lane and Church Street. NG11 6DT

Check them out too on their Facebook page and also on their Twitter Feed   

The Dorset Arms in Compton Acres – A tasty but pricey lunch, Morrocan Lamb Wrap

The Dorset Arms is the new kid on the block in Compton Acres taking the place of the Old Colonial Pub. It ‘sells itself’¬† as having “been completely transformed into a Mediterranean restaurant with a large open plan dining room enlarged by a conservatory built where the outside tables used to be. The decor is light, airy and very contemporary with pine floors and comfortable seating. Now primarily a restaurant rather than a pub”.

I have to say that when¬†we¬†came in I was very pleasantly surprised, if I am brutally honest I always¬†felt that the Old Colonial was …¬†well it was a bit of a shithole. Sorry for that assessment.

Lunchtime basics

On this visit we were just looking for a spot of lunch, hopefully something quick, something tasty and something reasonably priced. That was the plan anyway.

The wraps were sounding good and I figured that we shouldn’t have to wait too long to get our chops on one of these babies. I ordered¬†the Moroccan Lamb¬†Wrap, Alison,¬†my partner in crime ordered the Roasted Vegetable Wrap¬†(I have nothing else to say about their meal except that¬†she said¬†it¬†tasted¬†really good!), all I have to say is about the Moroccan Lamb

Moroccan Lamb Wrap

The Moroccan Lamb¬†Wrap at the Dorset Arms was described as “Spiced lamb kofte, peppers & red onion with minted Greek yoghurt, rocket, & skin on fries”

I did my best to take the ‘aerial’ picture view so that you can see what you are letting yourself in for when you take a chance on one of these. It is laid out well, but you know what? I just wanted a simple wrap with some chips, this was pushing the limits just a little or perhaps cynically adding a few more quid onto the cost ūüôā

OK all jesting aside, I liked most of what I saw and I really liked what I got. I love rocket so I was happy to get a great big mound of it on my plate. I am not a massive salad person, I do try to include it in my diet, but often I fail,¬†the ‘one saviour in my green leaf world’ is that peppery rocket! I can eat¬†it all day!

The chips were really good too, once they were laid out on the actual plate and¬†they had been taken out of that stupid pretend deep fryer¬†wire basket, they looked ‘much’ better and they were much¬†easier to eat. We both spent time banging on about that ūüôā

But this is all fluff and frippery (maybe that should be the name of a blog?) the only important thing to talk about it the wrap itself!

Moroccan Wrap

The Moroccan wrap filled with that kofte sausage meat, sweet peppers and red onions was extremely tasty and pretty damn good. I could eat two or three of these in one go, actually I could eat them until I was so full I could burst!

If you just gave me a plate of the sausage I would be a very happy bunny. The lamb kofta is packed with flavour, more flavour than I expected, I was very pleasantly surprised. Maybe this is why I was paying basically 9 quid for a wrap, (9 quid!).

Now don’t get me wrong this was really a very tasty meal, I just had a concern that it was too much money for lunchtime, we had two wraps and a couple of cokes, and after I left a reasonable tip I had spent ¬£25. That is a lot, even for the Bridgford Set!

More Menu

 

 

When¬†we walked in and saw what they had done¬†with the place, I really wished that it had always looked like this, but then I remembered that it is a pub and maybe it should be a pub, and that maybe all of our local¬†pubs should actually all be¬†for¬†the local.¬†Perhaps I retract my ‘bit of a shithole’ comment, I have no problem with a pub for the people,¬†a place to¬†go get a pint, watch some footy and eat some basic cheap pub food.

It is nice though now, perfect for the Bridgford set, but no good for the common man (and woman) who just want to get a pint in¬†‘their local’ I do worry that it may fall foul of the same thing that is happening to the Wilford Green (formerly the Maypole), sometimes people just want to go out for a pint!

Now I also read that this pub serves 2 regular beers, one of which is the Caledonian Deuchars IPA. This is one of my go to beers, whenever and if ever I can find it. This is a very good thing!

You see Beer is king in a pub, in all honestly I will just treat this place as a restaurant and forget that it was a pub, but I cant afford to come in too often for this level of food. It is kind of pricey

 

Located at

8 Compton Acres,
West Bridgford, Nottingham NG2 7RS

and within 5-10 mins of the Compton Acres Tram Stop!

 

StreetFood Revolution UK in Hockley – Very Tasty Glazed Chicken, Awesome Couscous Salad all on Turkish Flatbread

Street Food Revolution in Hockley is located in a sort of alley¬†alongside Rough Trade on Broad Street. I read about it a little while ago while I was out of town in the local rag where they ran a story called ‘Street Food served from a former disused alleyway in running for best experience in Nottingham

I had scoped it out at the weekend as I was out stomping around Hockley and it looked pretty good, so as I had an extra day of this week, I made a plan to stop by on Tuesday to see what they had on offer.

It was one of those days when it was trying to be sunny and that seemed enough to draw a small crowd of people to the alley and the seats outside Rough Trade, all looking to get some lunch from them too.

I felt that I was in good company, and the friendliness of Suki at the counter made us feel like we were very welcome. Top marks for the casual and trusting attitude when we ordered and I started fishing cash out of my pocket, it was like ‘don’t worry just pay afterwards or whenever you are ready’, ‘sit anywhere and I’ll bring it over when it’s ready’.

I really like that and the friendly chat about what we were up to in town, even though they were clearly busy, it was as if we were their most valued customers. That is how to do it, and how to get regular repeat custom.

You see I haven’t even talked about the food yet and I am already full of it, and full of praise, that was how we felt as we sat down, we just had a feeling and knew this was going to be a good choice.

The Daily Menu

 

I had checked out their Facebook page to see what was going to be on offer before we left and was happy to see what they had:

“Today’s lunch at Streetfoodrevolutionuk we have glazed chicken, Halloumi or BBQ Jackfruit with delicious homemade salads & sauces on Turkish Flatbread”

They had a sample plate of what was on offer so that you can see what you are going to get, and that looked just as good and the same as the pic on Facebook (it was probably the same plate – Doh! I just figured that out as I am writing).

Anyway I like it when they do this so that there is no confusion as to size and content, and it usually helps me to choose one place over another. I usually like it as I get to take a photo of said food, although this day it was an epic fail as I forgot to ūüôā

Glazed Chicken

I had the Glazed Chicken sandwich which was essentially a large skewer of chicken with a couscous salad filled with ‘pomegranate, radish, roast carrots, pear and coriander’¬†on top of a large Turkish Flatbread¬†bread. It was looking delicious, vibrant and basically pretty amazing when it arrived at our table, all this for just ¬£6! surely there must be some mistake?

I was asked if I wanted it spicy and I said yes, when it arrived I could already see a whole load of sliced jalapeno on the sandwich and¬†a few drops of what I suspected was going to be a spicy sauce. I was happy though to see a huge swathe of what looked like a tzatziki smeared on one slice of that flatbread, I¬†figured it was going to be OK¬†ūüôā

Glazed Chicken Sandwich

I turned my open faced sandwich into a proper sandwich basically so that I could stuff all this awesome looking food into my mouth, hopefully with greater ease and possible slightly more aplomb.

It was a good decision as then I was able to increase the odds of getting a bit of everything with each bite. It worked! although, there was so much bread and salad that I think I might have just needed a touch more chicken to carry out that plan (or am I being greedy?)

The grilled skewered chicken was lovely, it was kind of a honey glaze (I think) with a hint of heat (but I am probably wrong). I loved the bread it was fresh and airy, you can see the air pockets in the profile.

I really liked the couscous salad and in true Masterchef ingredient challenge fashion I tried to work out what was in it. I had picked out Cilantro (or rather Coriander as we call it over here), cucumber, celery? jalapeno, pomegranate, and radish. It was left to Suki to tell us that it also had Pear and¬†Carrot in it, I think I did well enough to replicate in one of John Torode’s challenges (#maybe).

Menu wise apparently the food on offer changes daily, One of the owners Suki told us that other days they have had lamb koftas, a pork fennel and apple burger, even a BBQ JackFruit (which sounds quite different and intriguing).

We didn’t get to chat to the main man Robbie, but to be honest I kind of shy away from talking. I just like to eat, and if it’s good I love to tell you all about it ūüôā

I am quite taken with this place and I hope that they get the recognition that they deserve!

Located at

5 Broad St in Hockley
Nottingham,
NG1 3AJ
Tel: 07445 218973
Check them out on Facebook

The Big One at The Poppy and Pint – A most excellent English Breakfast

This weekend we stopped off at the Poppy and Pint in Lady Bay as we found ourselves in a breakfast situation. We were¬†at the start¬†of a road trip up north to Manchester for a family gathering to celebrate Mum’s 70th.¬†On trips like this you are never quite sure when the next meal is coming from so we were taking no chances and were filling up on breakfast before we left the city limits ūüôā

I last blogged about this pub back in 2012 when I was¬†in the¬†early days of writing¬†The Nottingham Food Blog,¬†you can read that post¬†here¬†“The Poppy and Pint ‚Äď Community and¬†Beer“.

I just did and it made me recall just how super the food is here at the Poppy and Pint, it also made me realise just how remiss I have been in not coming back more often!

Anyway you can catch up on all that at your leisure, lets have a gander at the breakfasts that we managed to get our hands on!

Full English Breakfast – The Big One

We took stock of the options and basically let greed take over as we ordered the largest breakfast that they had on offer: “The Big One”. It arrived on the largest plate that I have ever been served a single meal on. It was huge and took up at least a third of the table, when they use the word ‘big’ they take the literal meaning quite seriously.

If I am honest this was way too much food, but as I said earlier this meal had to keep us going all day and we really needed to fill up before we headed ‘up¬†North’

This somewhat over-facing plateful of breakfast goodness contained Two fried eggs, Two sausages, Two slices of bacon, baked beans, grilled tomatoes, hash browns, mushrooms and two slices of toast. It was priced at a fairly reasonable tariff of £7.95 which was great value when you consider it also came with a tea or coffee. Luckily it was not priced by weight!

The Big One – from¬†a different perspective ūüôā

It was all cooked pretty much the way that I liked, the eggs were nice and runny, and just about perfect for me. I enjoyed the sausage which was¬†crisp, meaty, and firm. I do like my bacon to be a bit crispier, but I didn’t ask them to do that, so that was my¬†fault (next time I will ask)

The hash browns were pretty good too, often these sit on the plate as filler, but these were nice enough that I might actually choose them another time. Nice soft potato, with a hint of onion and a crispy coating. Beans are beans and the mushrooms were a bit over fried for my personal liking, but you cant win them all.

I am not normally a fan of grilled tomato, but the ones that they served me here at the Poppy and Pint were some of the best I have seen for a while. They were cooked all the way through and were full of juice to mix into my meal.

The tea was good (well hot and wet) and there was plenty of toast available to mop up my bean juice, tomato, and egg yolk.

If I am honest there really was probably too much food and my eyes were most certainly bigger than my belly on this occasion ūüôā

This is probably the best pub breakfast I have had for quite some time!

Breakfast Menu at the Poppy and Pint

All things considered I would definitely come back to the Poppy and Pint for a breakfast! Sadly they do only serve the breakfast from 9.30am to 12 noon, but then again that makes it more of an event and more of an excuse to get down the pub earlier to read the paper and eat some joy.

The ‘Big One’ was great value and a great feast for ¬£7.95, the ‘Regular’ at ¬£5.95, which is a tiny bit smaller with just the one egg and the one sausage, would still probably be more food that I really need.

For the sake of my expanding girth I¬†think though that next time I will be much more restrained. I think that I would downsize to the ‘Mini’ which is ‘sausage, bacon, beans, free range egg & toast’ for ¬£3.95. It doesn’t come with a tea or coffee, but I would probably come in a bit later on maybe about 11.30am and get myself a lovely pint of Castle Rock beer instead to wash it all down! ūüôā

Sound like a plan to me! Come over and try one yourselves ūüôā

Apparently the Poppy and Pint have been named or as they say ‘crowned’ Nottingham Camra Pub of the Year 2017. That is not bad going since it is only April! ūüôā

It really is a very good pub though, great beer from Castle Rock, some quite excellent pub food, and it trumps it all with the way it acts as a hub for the local community.

If this pub was right on my doorstep I would probably cross over the threshold on a pretty frequent basis! Probably be back next week for a work pub lunch if I can persuade the chaps ūüôā

The Poppy and Pint is located on Pierrepoint Road, Lady Bay, West Bridgford.

You can get there via public transport by taking the Green Line 11 loop bus from the City Centre and then walking about 5 minutes

Check them out on their Facebook page and one their Twitter Feed

 

Son of Steak – Checking out some ‘fast casual’ Steak and Chips in Trinity Square

Son of Steak in Trinity Square Nottingham near to the Cornerhouse is a recent addition to the dining scene in the City Centre. The name of the place probably gives away the type of food on offer.

I had read that this place has opened up and that they were serving reasonably priced Steak meals. We were in the area, were hungry for meat, so we came to try

Son of Steak is part of the Mitchell and Butler’s group and is apparently their latest concept to ‘explore serving steak in a fast casual environment’. Well if that is the case then plonking yourselves down in amongst the plethora of offerings in and around the Cornerhouse is probably a bold place to start.

They say:

“It’s time for a revolution – a revolution of doing things simply. A revolution of doing things properly.

We‚Äôre the next generation of steak. Forget all the fuss… focus on the flavour”

Well Let’s take a look then

The Board outside of Son of Steak told me everything I needed to know and offered me everything that I was looking for. Steak and Chips was the name and the game at this hour on Friday Evening. I promised my mate some steak and I was pretty sure that we had found ourselves in the right spot to get one.

Flat Iron Steak and Chips

I ordered the 8oz Flat Iron steak cooked medium rare with hand cut chips and a Flat Mushrooms in Garlic butter as my sides. I could have had one of their sauces to go with it for another quid, but I was keen to taste the steak naked to see if it was any good. I figured that if I needed anything to assist then I would mix it up with that garlic butter that I hoped was going to be all over my mushrooms.

As Steak goes it was a pretty decent effort. I like the flavour and I liked the cook on the meat, I needed to season to help it out a bit though. I would have preferred it to have arrive uncut on my ‘board’¬†as I wondered if I have lost some of the lovely steak meat juices as it was¬†pre-cut. Although mine was just the perfect colour, my mate who ordered exactly the same had one that was a bit greyer. But hey you know we just wanted steak, we were here for ‘fast and very casual’ not ‘Michelin Man steak’¬†so we weren’t bothered really.

I liked the mushrooms quite a bit, I would order those again, and I quite liked the chips too, there were just about enough to make it a decent meal.

As Steak and Chips go I quite enjoyed the Son of Steak offering. If I want a really nice sitdown Steak Dinner then I am more likely to go to my other local favourite Soulville Steakhouse, but if I just want a quick bite at a reasonable price then I might come back here. You cant really go too far wrong for a tenner.

My usual complaint that it came on one of those bloody boards was left hanging in the air, as just for once it seemed to be a fitting vehicle to display my Steak ūüôā

Menu Options

They were offering other Steak Options including a special of Rump, Lomita, Picanha, and Sirloin. My Favourite to cook back at home is the Rib-Eye. The Flat iron seemed to be the best value and our friendly waitress told us that it was her favourite of all their offerings.

Elsewhere on the menu it tells you that you can get Steak and Eggs for Breakfast  / Brunch for about a fiver which does seem great value.

Son of Steak also sell Burgers and Steak Bao, so there are few more reasons that might draw me back in through the door for a bit of a Steak themed Snack

Son of Steak replaces the old Harvester Restaurant in the square, which makes sense now as the Mitchel and Butler group also own Harvester, All Bar One, and Toby Carvery.

Located at 8 Trinity Square, Nottingham, NG1 4A

Check them out on their Facebook page and on their Twitter Feed

Kayal on Broadway, excellent Southern Indian Fare- my tagline “Five went to eat Thali”

Kayal in Nottingham

Kayal in Nottingham serves up classic Southern Indian fare, describing it as¬†‘Kerala Backwater Cuisine’. I do love this type of food and I have blogged once before about this place when I came here late one evening on one of those “works leaving do’s” – Read about that here ‘Kayal in Nottingham ‚Äď Backwater Cuisine on the¬†Broadway’

I kind of felt that even though we got a good taste of the place, there was a little bit of unfinished business, (if I am honest I needed to try their food sober.).

I was looking forward to seeing what they had to offer at a more respectable hour of the day so I was delighted that we were heading back here.

Business Lunch at Kayal in Nottingham

We came here for a bit of a holiday season outing, a little bit of a lunchtime jolly with good friends from work, we had already read about the Business lunch for $5.95, which sounded to be great value, we knew that it included a choice from a couple of curries and a side dish, so we were expecting some kind of mini buffet situation, but we had no idea that it was a Thali, which was an excellent and most pleasing discovery!

This was pretty much terrific! haven’t used that word on a food blog post for a while, it was so unexpected a treat and so much in keeping with the moment and with the make up of our team.

There were five of us, and we all ordered the Thali, Four of us have been dining at the better and perhaps lesser known curry houses in the city for a while, one of us was from Hyderabad, two of us had lived in Hyderabad, three of us lived in places far and flung, three of us love ping pong (random fact of the day), we all loved this meal!

Lunchtime Thali at Kayal

Lunchtime Thali at Kayal in Nottingham

The plain dosa was excellent, it was both a ‘filler’ and a ‘dipper’, I do like a masala dosa when you get a bit of spicy potato inside, but to be honest I was able to mix my dosa with the lovely little bit of lightly spiced potato from pot number 4 so all was well in the world.

I also enjoyed dipping my dosa into the vegetable curry (pot 2) and the yellow lentil daal (pot 3). The vegetable curry was a bit on the thin side, perhaps a little watery, but it had a nice gentle warming spice hit, and a sweet peppery and tomato based gravy. There were bits of green bean, potato, tomato, okra and more in the pot, very simple and all of which worked well together.

I loved the yellow split lentil daal, it has become one of my favorite indian sides over recent times, it is not that spicy, but it is kind of creamy and mixes so well with the rice.

In those times when you have no cutlery and you are eating with your hands, it works perfectly.

Thali at kayal in Nottingham

The chicken curry was also pretty tasty, it was kind of a coconut green curry sauce gravy with a couple of cubes of chicken, it was really tasty.

I had quite a few Thali earlier in the year when I travelled across India and I started to love that clean purity from a vegetarian platter, so I had been a bit dubious about having one with meat in, as I was worried it might take over. I had no worries, it fitted in very well with the experience.

I was a bit uncertain about the potato dish, it had nice flavour, but I have had much better cumin potato or Aloo Jeera dishes on other Thali plates in the past, so I think part of me was hankering after something like that instead. Oh well I suppose I cannot get everything that I want, all of the time ūüôā

This was a great meal and a great lunch, sometimes these Thali are too big in the UK and they try to pass it off as some sort of a sharing platter, here though at Kayal they know what they are doing as set you up with your own personal meal packed with all sorts of super tasty little treats and morsels.

Recommend to the max!

It was very, very good indeed! and I cannot help but think if people knew it was a Thali then the place would be mobbed out,

I mean £5.95 is great value (in the UK) for this type of lunch!

Kayal Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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Kayal in Nottingham is located at

8, Broad Street
Nottingham
NG1 3AL
Ph: 0115 9414733
E: notts@kayalrestaurant.com

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Red Dog Saloon – ‘Another’ American themed restaurant in Nottingham

Red Dog Saloon

Red Dog Saloon on Victoria street in Nottingham is another restaurant that has opened up in the city serving up American BBQ themed food and Burgers. I am not really sure that we need all of these places to be honest, but I thought I should try them out.

They say that they serve Kansas City BBQ which sounds great, the most famous element of Kansas City style¬†BBQ is ‘burnt ends’ and¬†I love ‘burnt ends’, Red Dog Saloon doesn’t serve ‘burnt ends’.¬† I didn’t order the BBQ.

Call me crazy for coming here and ordering a Burger but then please take a moment to consider the method in my madness. I had read that there had been some criticscm in the press of their burgers implying that they were¬†not cooked properly¬†or rather¬†to be more accurate there had been some appalling reporting that they served their burgers¬†pink. For god sakes man they should be served medium (slightly pink) at worst, medium-rare (pink) at best, cooking them ‘well done’¬†will ruin them.

I really just felt that I needed to come in and see for myself. To add a little context I have been working back over in the States for the last 3 months, a place that knows how to cook a burger, knows how to take fresh meat, grind it to order, and serve it ‘pink’ to all comers, That is what is expected in the majority of places, and that is what is sadly lacking in most burger joints in our fair city. It all comes down to the quality and freshness of the meat and the skills of the chef and the open mind of the customer.

Burger Menu

Burger Menu at Red Dog Saloon

It was just lunchtime so we were thinking ‘just get a simple cheeseburger’, and that was probably a good idea as that was probably one of the most reasonably priced items on the menu at ¬£7.95, of course you know I didn’t get that, but maybe I should have?

I nearly got the ‘Black & Blue’ as I like the style of ‘Blackened Cajun’¬†and blue cheese is a worthy partner on a¬†burger such as this, but I was a little uncertain or maybe unconvinced as to whether they could pull that combo off, so I decided to stick with the tried and tested combination of cheese and bacon as my toppings

I really just wanted a bacon cheeseburger, but the option of having a little bit of belly pork on top as well was too much to resist, so I ordered the Bacon Deluxe Cheeseburger, I was upsold by £2!

Bacon Deluxe Cheeseburger

Bacon Deluxe Cheeseburger

First thoughts was that it ‘Looks Good eh?’, I know that the truth lies in the bite and the taste, but it kind of helps that it at least looks nice to start with. The thick strips of belly pork were done quite well, they were just crispy enough to add nice texture and I liked the slightly smoky flavour. They were not as nice as the strips of belly pork we cook at home on top of the sunday roast chicken, but not bad.

The most interesting thing about the burgers here to me are that you get two thin 3 oz patties in the bun, which means that if you cook them too long you are going to be eating a dry chewy disc of meat. Happily even though these are not pink at all (anymore) these were cooked just about perfectly. I liked the meatiness of them and even though they seemed to have little fat in them, they were still a bit juicy. I have to say though that I like a thicker burger and I like ones where the juices flow out as I eat them.

There was not that much cheese on these to call them a ‘deluxe’ cheeseburger, it was a stretch to call them cheeseburgers to be honest ūüôā I think that is clear from the picture above.

The structural integrity of the burger could have been improved by layering the contents differently, too much juice seeps onto the bun so that after a few bites it falls apart in your hands.

Personally,¬†I like to add a layer of lettuce leaf to the lower bun to hold all the juice in, shredded lettuce¬†doesn’t work, the¬†tomato needs to be above the burger as well as it just is too full of¬†juice ūüôā

OMG I am sure I never used to be so picky, but you did just charge¬†me ¬£10 just¬†for a burger with no sides!¬†It was ‘quite’ good, not good enough to be a regular burger on any burger munching circuit of mine, but better than a lot of other efforts masquerading as burgers in Nottingham at the moment.

Honestly I did like and enjoy this burger, I am not inviting it over for Christmas, but if I need to pretend to ‘like’ someone enough to get a lift to a New Years Party I might give it a call. No that would be unkind, I wouldn’t like to¬†fuddle it with mixed metaphors ūüôā

Macaroni Cheese

Macaroni Cheese Side at Red Dog Saloon

This looked the business when it arrived at the table, I was liking that it was topped with toasted bread crumbs as that is how I like to cook my own Mac ‘n’ Cheese, I also liked that I could see the sauce bubbling up from the pasta as that was making me believe that it had just been pulled out of the oven and brought swiftly to the table for our delectation.

Sadly that was all that I had to say in a positive note, it was to be really honest a sad insipid affair. It had no discernible taste of cheese and was basically just a bowl of elbow pasta in a yellow / white sauce. I could have been more accepting if it wasn’t for the fact that you have to pay for any sides that you have at Red Dog and we had already been served a bowl of basic fries that also missed the mark so badly.¬†Hell man, I am not usually that critical but I really like Mac n Cheese and this effort just made me sad.

I have some great Mac n Cheese recipes, and if you, like me love this dish, then head over to Oscar and Rosie’s (best pizza place in the city) and try theirs!

I know that a BBQ restaurant should really be¬†focussed on the meats, but having¬†eaten at a lot of¬†BBQ joints¬†in the¬†States, I know that they are also proud of their sides too. I kind of felt that the sides here at Red Dog are just a throwaway item, basically a chance to get some extra money onto the diners cheque, this seems to be a bit of a trend at the moment, and I don’t think that we as diners should take it. Just my thoughts, you may be happy with your lot and I might be an idiot, I just know what I like, this just made me a little bit grumpy ūüė¶

So what about that BBQ?

Pit BBQ Menu at Red Dog Saloon

I would like to try the BBQ but it seems quite expensive and I am not rich enough to waste money on a whim. I am lucky enough to be located in North Carolina at the moment where they have shacks with real pit BBQ and places smoking meats for generations. When I read that places have imported smokers, I often say that I could buy a piano, no I cannot play the piano.

It will be interesting to see how Red Dog Saloon fares in the city in competition with the other BBQ themed places, I don’t think that it has too much to worry about as most people will never have had the opportunity to eat really good authentic BBQ so they will probably lap it up, just like they are already.

I hope that they do ok as I want every business to thrive,  but I think that they need to find a niche, and

They really need to get ‘Burnt Ends’ on the menu! ūüôā

They need to be different.

 

Red Dog Saloon in Nottingham is Located at

20 – 22 Victoria Street
Nottingham NG1 2EX
0203 409 4803