Sunday, 26 April 2009

St George's Day Ale Dinner

April 23rd is St George's Day - England's National Day. It isn't a public holiday (which is galling to a lot of people since St Andrews Day is a holiday in Scotland and St Patricks Day is a holiday in Northern Ireland) but there are some festivities. The pub decided to do a special dinner with English food and matched ales to celebrate.

As a starter, I had a fabulous rabbit, black pudding and egg salad. The mixed leaves it was on were a bit on the fatigued side, but the mustard dressing had enough zing to stand up to the rich black pudding, and the flavours of the egg, crumbled black pudding and rabbit worked beautifully together. The ale to accompany it was Robinsons Squires Gold - which was very nice really.

For people who can't come at the idea of eating bunnies or blood sausage (or don't like eggs) there was a roasted portobello mushroom filled with tomatoes and bechamel. Which looked pretty good too.

As the main course there was what was described as "Rump of Salt Marsh Spring Lamb served with Grilled New Season Asparagus, Crushed New Potatoes and a Port & Cranberry Jus". Well, for one thing I am fairly sure that it was a leg steak, rather than a rump. And the jus was the most god-awful, ill-conceived and poorly executed sauce I have eaten in ages. Completely acid, with no sign of port, it threatened to overwhelm the lamb and lovely vegetables. And from the comments at the other tables, we weren't the only ones who thought so. The chef can't possibly have tasted it.

The ale for this course was Charles Wells Bombadier. Which isn't a bad beer, but I just couldn't be bothered with it, so I moved onto wine for the rest of the evening. The waitress very kindly packaged up the undrunk beers for us to take home.

The dessert was a classic Eton Mess. The combination of berries, meringue and cream is so, so good! I could have had seconds. The beer to accompany that was Innis & Gunn Original. I was quite interested to see how it would match with the dessert, but not interested enough to actually drink it. Instead, we had it at a barbecue last night. It was very pleasant - quite light and delicate. I think it would have been OK.

10 comments:

Heather said...

mmm. i'll take one of each, please! happy st george's day!

Rebekka said...

One of each for me too!

kat said...

Bummer that the entree wasn't all it could have been

Foodycat said...

Heather - the salad was my favourite bit.

Rebekka - thanks for visiting my blog!

Kat - I know! They usually do so well. Still, it was a lovely meal.

Ali said...

you're funny. love the honesty! and love the idea of titling anything — whether or not it's accurate — as a "rump of..." Amazing.

www.alexandracooks.com

SSS said...

I took McVities biscuits and PG Tips teabags into work in celebration. Your method is much better!

Foodycat said...

Ali - I don't mind a leg steak, but it just isn't a rump.

SSS - your option was good too. Nothing says this scepter'd isle like tea and a biscuit.

Teresa Cordero Cordell said...

Foodycat, I would have hit the lamb and the dessert right off the bat. What a magnificent dinner. Thank you so much for the info on Inva Mulla. I will be looking for her CD. She is such a beautiful woman with an incredible voice.

Mediterranean kiwi said...

absolutely delicious - perfect way to celebrate st george's day in london, one of my fave cities in the world, and nice to know you get your fish and chips from a cretan!

Foodycat said...

Teresa - she does have a wonderful voice! I am glad you prompted me to look her up.

MedKiwi - the Cretan's also kindly supply us with some of their lovely unfiltered olive oil for our salads.

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