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 restaurants for a lazy lunch. Yorkshire puds ahoy!
The Little Angel, Henley On Thames
Well hellooooo beautiful! The Little Angel – a favourite with the rowers – has just reopened having taken the opportunity to spruce the place up during lockdown – 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, pork, veggie Wellington or sharing. There also sprucing up the website, so give them a call to book your Sunday slot – 01491 411008
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 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. Thye Sunday 3-course set menu is £47pp – reasonable for the quality of the food and cookery.
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. Two roasts are available, 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.
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 Sunday roast, and now offers spit roasted meats, including a 12-hr slow-roasted lamb and mini roasts for the kids.
The Newbury Pub, Newbury
Sunday roast at The Newbury is an event in itself. 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 lovfe a roast (weirdos), there’s pie, pasta and fish too.
The Crown, Bray
The Crown at Bray is a super-relaxed, down-to-earth boozer 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! But in a post lockdown world, al fresco is still a go-go. That doesn’t mean you have to forfeit your Yorkies. Sunday Roast is served in its lovely garden. 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.
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 carvery 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
The White Oak 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. 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.
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.
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 venison to devour. There are some lovely circular woodland walks nearby so you can justify a massive blowout. Tuck in.
The Dog & Duck, Wokingham
The Dog & Duck in Emmbrook is on the outskirts of Wokingham – and they take their roasts very seriously, using native breeds. Not a meat-eating carnivore? There’s a vegan Wellington and everyone appreciate the generous spread of veggies and lashings of gravy. This a crowd-pleasing menu and the puds are to die for. Did someone say apple and cinnamon rumble? Apparently it’s for sharing… but not on my watch.
The Golden Ball, Pinkneys Green
The Golden Ball in Pnkneys 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 or Glocester old Spot pork, Gammon or plump for a meat trio. There’s also a veggie option. It comes fully loaded with huge Yorkies and plenty of veg. Food coma guaranteed. You won’t leave hungry or disappointed.
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 – 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.
The Swan, Pangbourne
I made an impromptu stop here recently and 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 a traditional roast with a sharing board of sides fully loaded with crispy spuds and hitting the 5-a-day on the veg.
Roux at Skindles, Maidenhead
I’m cheating on pubs (just this once) with a restaurant – but one with Roux over the door and on the floor with lots of French foodie flare. Roux at Skindles is a modern French brasserie that understands our obsession with the traditional Sunday roast, offering beef strip loin, Blythburgh pork rack and Cotswold White chicken with all the trimmings.