The Duchess: Family fare goes down a treat at homely pub

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On the advice of several friends the Bloomfield clan headed to the Duchess pub on Hovingham Drive to sample their fare.

Having heard great things about their Sunday lunches and their meals during the week, we had high hopes of a tasty treat.

Happy memories of our daughter’s christening were evoked by our return to the hostelry, and we settled ourselves in the conservatory area and swiftly ordered our food from the menu.

You can also choose to sit in the main bar area, but the dining area in the conservatory is far more suitable, especially with the younger members of our family in tow.

I glanced at the specials menu, but unfortunately the starter that I fancied, spicy prawns in tempura batter, was sold out, as was the baked salmon main dish.

I headed back to the menu looking for inspiration, I decided on the prawns in a rich marie rose sauce (£4.25), served with salad, brown bread and butter, while my better half opted for the pan fried garlic mushrooms (£3.95), which came with toast and butter.

My starter was a decent prawn cocktail, but nothing more, but the garlic mushrooms were very tasty indeed.

The menu included the usual suspects of fish and chips, steaks, homemade lasagne, bangers and mash, scampi, steak and ale pie and hunter’s chicken as well as kids’ meals and light snacks.

I chose the hunters chicken (£7.95) for my main course, while my wife went for the steak and Marston’s Ale pie (£7.25).

Our two older girls decided on the build your own chicken curry (£6.95), these were also included on the Monday to Saturday 2 for £10 offer.

The curry allows the customer to choose from sauces such as tikka masala, balti, korma or jalfrezi, with the girls going for the tikka.

The youngest member of our party went for the chicken nuggets and chips – although they were more like goujons, and this cost £3.75.

The chicken was succulent, with just the right amount of mature cheese and the homemade chips were excellent.

The steak and ale pie was also very well received, the braised steak was eyed up by our five-year-old, who devoured a couple of morsels.

The curries arrived in balti dishes with a pot full of rice, a serving of mango chutney and a massive poppadom, and all the components – apart from the chutney – were devoured.

The chicken strips were also swiftly despatched, and the chips proved popular with all the family.

With our plates emptied, we set out sights on the dessert menu. I chose the chocolate fudge cake (£3.95) and my good lady opted for the syrup sponge (£3.95), both with custard although we could have chosen cream or ice cream to accompany them.

Both sweets were very tasty, mine so much so that I only got a spoonful as the girls quickly tucked in, and, as they were served hot, just the ticket with the temperature starting to drop outside.

With a total bill of £49.30 this was an affordable, comforting family meal out, but hopefully next time I dine at the Duchess all the specials will be available so I can try something a bit more adventurous.


Food 7

Menu choice 7

Service 7

Decor 7

Ambience 7