Autumn roasts with the most
Can’t be bothered to baste potatoes with goose fat? Grab your gang and head to one of these local gastropubs that do roasts with the most.
I love a big ol’ roast dinner as much as the next woman but, my goodness, aren’t they a faff to make? Hours of peeling, basting and washing up of roasting tins… and then it’s scoffed in 10 minutes flat. So in an attempt to take things easy this weekend, I’m gathering my brood and whizzing off to one of these brilliant local pubs and *ahem* home delivery for a lazy lunch. Yorkshire puds ahoy!
The Greene Oak, Windsor
A Michelin rated gastropub on the outskirts of Windsor. The Greene Oak is a quality country pub with a a solid reputation for outstanding food. It’s unsurprising when you consider owners James and Jamie both worked at The Ivy in London. The food might be described as unfussy but the quality of the ingredients and cookery is top notch. Book in for a roast – a celebration of British ingredients and treat yourself to a cocktail. These guys know their way round the kitchen and the bar. £16.95pp. Kids option available.
The Carnarvon Arms, Whitway, Nr Newbury
The Carnarvon Arms is an excellent local pub just a stones throw from Highclere Castle, owned by Earl and Lady Carnarvon, and star of TV and Film Downton Abbey. Cue coach loads of eager fans desperate to get their hands on Lord Grantham in the Capability Brown gardens. But avoid the period drama and head to the pub for a delish roast. Four locally sourced meats on the menu, an indulgent veggie option, all served with a rainbow or veg and Yorkie the size of a newborn’s head. Heaven. From £14.50.
The Greyhound, Finchampstead
The Greyhound Finchampstead is the new kids on the gastropub block – and it means business. The quality of the food is outstanding, the English wine list is particularly exciting to dive into and the Sunday menu is a crowd-pleaser with a fancy nut roast, native-bred beef, Tamworth pork or chicken (my fave), served with duck fat roast potatos, pigs in blankets and a bog ol’ Yorkie. At £16.95 it’s seriously good value.
The Crown at Bray, Bray
The Crown at Bray is a super-relaxed, down-to-earth gastropub and you’ll be playing cosy pub bingo: low beams (Ouch! Mind your head), roaring fire, exposed brick, dark oak furniture and a garden to boot the kids into. HOUSE! Sunday Roast is served in its lovely Garden Marquee. The beef has been described as ‘the best ever’, but if you’re not a fan of this British tradition, they offer pub classics too.
Five Bells, Wickham
Classic country pub vibes at the Five Bells in Wickham. Low beams, roaring fire, countryside views and a stonking Sunday Roast. There’s a real mix of people here – families, couples, pit-stop cyclists, local drinkers and well-behaved dogs all settling in for the afternoon. Chef Owner Duncan Jones has four roasts on the menu, including roasted celeriac (£12). I’ve got my beady eye on the treacle cured ham collar with all the sides you could wish for and apple & blackberry crumble. From £15.
The Royal Oak, Yattendon
The Royal Oak is a lovely combo of old and new – exposed beams and roaring fires at the front with a cool, contemporary Orangery at the back, with views into the lovely walled garden. The Oak has always served up a cracking traditional Sunday roast, with mini portions for the kids. There are four meats to choose from – lamb, beef, chicken and pork – with veggie, vegan and fish dishes elsewhere on the menu. From £20pp.
The Little Angel, Henley On Thames
Well hellooooo beautiful! The Little Angel – a favourite with the rowers – has recently enjoyed an interior makeover – and the results are super-foxy. It’s always been a relaxed gastropub serving great food, but its open door policy to kids and dogs make it a Sunday fave. Take a leisurely stroll along the Thames, ogle the hotties in Lycra and choose your roast – beef from Casey’s Field Farm Shop in Ashampstead, Pork from Royal Windsor with crispy roasties, honey glazed veg, Yorkies and gravy. Yum. Plus they offer an interesting celeriac choucroute dish if you’re heading down the plant-based route. From £17..
The Hind’s Head, Bray
Heston’s guys know how to work a triple-cooked spud. But we’re not talking chips. Oh no, it’s The Hind’s Head Chef Peter Gray’s triple-cooked roasties that are put on a potato pedestal. Possibly the best I have EVER tasted. As your would expect from a Michelin twinkler, the food is outstanding. The Sunday three-course set menu is £55pp – reasonable for the quality of the food and cookery. Did someone say dry-aged beef sirloin and Blackberry Eton Mess, yes they did. *Dabs napkin*.
The Wellington Arms, Strafield Turgis
Local food, cosy interiors and a grand ol’ duke next door, The Wellington Arms at Stratfield Turgis is a classic British pub through and through and the Sunday roast is a belter. Three fully-loaded roasts are available (extra sides are available if you dare), a crowd-pleasing kids’ menu and the specials board has been designed to tickle the fancy of the most indecisive diner. They know their crowd offering good pub grub where provenance rules using Hampshire, Surrey and Berkshire ingredients where possible. From £16.95.
The Newbury Pub, Newbury
Sunday roast at The Newbury is a religion. A lot of love goes into this great British dish from the overnight roasted beef to the Roast Sharing Board that comes with a combo of beef, pork and chicken – perfect for the greedy *ahem* or indecisive. This Muddy award-winning pub, is a gastro hotspot perfect for relaxed grazing. Sunday Funday starts and ends here – especially now they distill their own gin.
The Beehive, White Waltham
Chef Dominic Chapman offers just two roasts on his Sunday menu at The Beehive in White Waltham, but who needs too much choice when you’re being offered perfection. Sink your teeth into roast sirloin of Hereford beef, Yorkshire pub, cauliflower cheese and flavour-packed gravy or roast Northumberland grouse with game chips and gravy. Heaven on a plate. Anyone who doesn’t love a Sunday meat feast, there’s pasta and fish too.
The Crown, Playhatch
Meaty feast ahoy! This charming 16th-century inn, nestled between the Chilterns and the Thames, offers a Sunday carvery with a selection of meats, seasonal veggies, roast potatoes and, or course, Yorkshire puddings. Adult dinners are priced at £15, or there’s a smaller serving for kids at a very reasonable £7.
The White Oak, Cookham
Sunday lunch at The White Oak is an event in itself. This superb gastropun balances the art of being a welcoming local and foodie destination. So if you like your Sunday lunch with a side order of WOW, then pull up a chair. The food is stunning offering a traditional roast alongside other refined rather than rustic dishes. Come to mama slow roasted pork belly with lashings of gravy (£18.50). Kids are well catered for too. Plus there are some lovely walks to avoid a food coma.
The Winning Post, Winkfield
The Winning Post Winkfield is a pub with rooms, think Four Weddings cosy, and is popular with celebs and polo people. The pub defies the normal sittings, offering a Sunday menu from 12pm-7.30pm, meaning you can rock up at any time for a late lunch or early tea, if that’s how you roll. Expect classics with a twist – sharing starters, roastie mains and ‘there there’ puds. From £14.
Bel & The Dragon, Cookham, Reading and Windsor
A small chain of boutique pubs that does family food like a ninja. The Bel & The Dragon caters for everyone. The Menu offers a choice of cheek-warming Sunday dishes. I particularly love the sharing roasts, Yorkies the size of a baby’s head and comfort puds. A place for lazy Sunday afternoons. From £15pp.
The Old Boot, Stanford Dingley
The Old Boot in Stanford Dingley is one of those traditional country pubs that ticks all the boxes: roaring fires, a brilliant large garden with lush country views. Unleash the children, grab a large glass of red and relaaaax. Plenty of choice here with fully-loaded plates of beef, lamb, pork, chicken and Roasted Aubergine. There are some lovely circular woodland walks nearby so you make the most of them. Portion sizes are generous. From £14.50pp.
The Dog & Duck, Wokingham
The Dog & Duck in Emmbrook is on the outskirts of Wokingham – and they take their roasts very seriously, using native breed beef, gammon, chicken and pork. Not a meat-eating carnivore? There’s a Vegan Wellington and everyone appreciate the generous spread of veggies and lashings of gravy. It’s also an absolute bargain at £11.95pp.
The Golden Ball, Pinkneys Green
The Golden Ball in Pinkneys Green boasts quirky, cool interiors with a menu that will keep everyone happy – large and small. Perfect for the indecisive, you have the choice of native breed beef, chicken or the special roast of the day (from £16.96). There’s also a Vegan Wellington (£14.95) for our plant-based friends. Each roast comes fully loaded with huge Yorkies and plenty of veg. Food coma guaranteed. You won’t leave hungry or disappointed. They also offer a selection of pub classics for our non roast lovers. Weirdos.
Rose & Crown, Winkfield
The Rose & Crown‘s Sunday roast has a royal seal of approval when Meghan, Hazza and baby Archie popped in for their Yorkie fix (before the days of Megxit) – they won’t be getting many of those in LA. So if it’s good enough for the Sussexes, then it’s good enough for Muddy. There are usually two roasts with all the trimmings on the menu they are very reasonably priced from £11.95.
The Swan, Pangbourne
I’ve made a few impromptu stops here and every time it was packed. The Swan in Pangbourne is an historic pub with lots of nooks and crannies in a spot that’s as close to the Thames as you can possibly get without getting wet. The Sunday menu offers three traditional roast (or a bit of each for the indecisive) or a Vegan Wellington with a sharing board of sides fully loaded with crispy spuds and hitting the 5-a-day on the veg.
The Funghi Club, Home delivery
Don’t want to cook, don’t want to go out, but what the Sunday good delivered? Done. The Funghi Club will put a little ooh la la into your Sunday roast, with a restaurant quality two-course meal that you heat and eat at home. You need to be a bit organised. Orders need to be in by 12pm on Tuesday. Delivery/ collection is Friday, then pop it in the fridge until Sunday and follow the instructions to heat and serve. The menu changes weekly. The best bit? You can add a bottle of wine from Hungerford wine shop GrapeSmith to your order as well. Price £22.50pp.
Roast Wokingham, Home delivery
Sunday roast is a click away. Roast Wokingham is one of those lockdown businesses that hit the Sunday roast sweet spot and, despite pubs being open, is just as popular now. They offer a new menu of dishes (meat, veggie and vegan options), desserts and wines. Simply add to basket for collection or delivery (within 6 miles of Wokingham) every Sunday between 12 – 7pm. From £13. Kids roasts , £7.50.