Whenever the Dotterel is mentioned fond memories of foggy, cold Easter bank holidays spent at Reighton Gap come flooding back.
My dad’s family had a bungalow at the seaside village – and the Dotterel, off a roundabout on the A165 going towards Bridlington, became his local whenever we stayed there.
We three children would listen to the click of dominoes as he played fives and threes with other holidaymakers or the clunk of the pool table, and tuck into lime and lemonade and packets of crisps – that was all the pub grub on the menu in the 1970s. We loved going.
Boy, has The Dotterel changed. That dark and rather dingy, spit and sawdust haven from seafret and snow is now a bright modern, spick and span bar complete with wide-screen television – and it still has a pool table.
And you can get rather more than a packet of plain crisps to accompany your choice of beverage.
Starters range from soup of the day, £2.95, to breaded mushrooms, £3.25, and from hot and spicy chicken wings, £3.50, to samosas and spring rolls, £4.50.
The three of ua eschewed a starter, deciding we would rather leave room for a dessert – we had not taken the size of the main course portions into consideration then.
There is an extensive menu – roast dinner every day, curries, burger, steaks, vegetarian options, toasted sandwiches, jacket potatoes, omelettes scampi, fish and chips, pies, lamb shanks and chilli.
I opted for the full rack of barbecue spare ribs which came with mushrooms, onionrings, chips and salad, £10.99. It would have fed the three of us – and was delicious and piping hot.
The barbecue sauce was sweet and yet with a saltiness of soy and the meat so tender it fell off the bone.
One of my friends had what is clearly a speciality of the house – a large Yorkshire pudding filled with beef, £6.95. There is a variety of fillings – chilli, salmon, pork, turkey or sausages. For £2 extra you can have mash or chips.
The dish was declared a success by Lynne. Her twin sister Jo opted for gammon steak served with chips, mushroom, onion rings, fried egg, peas and salad (£10.95). She declined the pineapple – after all, this is a young woman whose friends make her a fruitless version whenever they make a trifle.
Custard, though, is another matter so the sticky toffee pudding served with lashings of it was a huge success, as was Lynne’s indulgence, chocolate pudding served with chocolate ice-cream.
My apple pie with custard was also delicious. The desserts were all around the £3.50 mark.
There is a children’s menu – fish fingers, sausage, pizza, chips: the Dotterel is a family pub and therefore caters for all.
The food is all home-made, outstanding and reasonably priced, especially considering the generous portion sizes.
Our bill – without drinks – came to just over £40.
The atmosphere is bright, warm and welcoming – and the TV was off, always a blessing in my view.
The Dotterell does Sunday lunch and also take-aways.
We will definitely be back for more of this great, hearty pub grub.
Marks out of 10
Food 8; menu choice 8; service 8; decor 7; ambience 7; overall 8.