GOOD, honest pub food is what you will get if you take a trip to The Crown Inn at Great Casterton.
Walking into the 16th century former country house is like taking a step back in time, it is a truly traditional village pub.
From the car park you walk into a warren of small rooms, which lead you through to the restaurant.
The barman directed my partner and me to a table and a quick look at the menu lets you know exactly what to expect. It features pub favourites including prawn cocktail, pate, scampi and pies.
For a Thursday night the pub was quite busy which helped build a relaxing atmosphere.
For starter I chose the garlic mushrooms and my partner, Marc, decided on the chicken liver pate.
I was imagining breadcrumbed mushrooms with salad and maybe a dip but what I received was much more of a treat.
The mushrooms were in a bowl covered in a gorgeous creamy sauce. And you could not go hungry as they were served with several slices of warm baguette, which tasted wonderful when dipped in the sauce. I must say I was really impressed.
Looking at the menu this may have been the Sunday Menu mushroom option but I certainly wasn’t complaining.
Marc was less thrilled with his starter of pate. He said it lacked flavour, although the intensity of the taste did grow as he worked his way through the enormous plate full of food, which incidentally looked like most of the loaf had been used to make toast.
Next I picked well again selecting the vegetable Wellington, which had a nice flavour. I ordered it with chips and vegetables.
Again you would not leave the pub hungry as the waiter brought out two bowls full of chips and vegetables to share.
The chips tasted fantastic and were hard to resist but the veg definitely could have been better. There was a selection of what I’m sure were tinned peas, sweetcorn and carrots, which reminded me a bit of school. I thought this was a real shame because I enjoyed everything else.
Marc had scampi and chips, which came with salad. He too was impressed with the chips but said he would have liked a few more pieces of scampi.
The salad, as with the starters, was lovely and fresh.
For review purposes only, as we certainly didn’t need more food, we chose a pudding. There is not a huge selection but being a chocoholic I didn’t need to listen to the options after chocolate fudge cake.
It was really tasty especially with a little bit of pouring cream, which was brought over in a little jug.
Marc had cheesecake, which was served with fresh raspberries. This also proved to be a popular choice.
For the price of this meal you certainly can’t complain. It cost around £40 for two people to have two drinks each (two of which were alcoholic) and three courses.
I would recommend it to anyone who is travelling along the A1 and fancies some pub food that doesn’t break the bank.
As an aside I also was impressed with the view, which looks out over to the village church. The bell ringers were practising and it was obviously good as I’m sure I saw two peacocks sitting on the chimneys of the house next door.
Review by Suzie Pike