Food Review: The Nottingham Knight - Ruddington Nottingham
We might be famous for a certain outlaw here in Nottingham, but the Nottingham Knight is aiming to put itself on the map as a foodie destination.
So, what is it? You may have heard of the Nottingham Knight roundabout located between Ruddington and West Bridgford, well just off it on the A52 is a pub of the same name.
Quick history lesson? Go on then; apparently the name derives from a stone figure of a Knight that was unearthed during building work and was once positioned at the junction.
Ok, now we know the origins of it's name, lets talk about about the pub itself. Sitting adjacent to a Premier Inn, the venue was on the receiving end of a £250,000 revamp at the beginning of the year with fresh paint and new carpet giving it a lighter look. They also extended the bar area and gave the garden a cute make over with more outdoor seating.
I have been to the pub a few times before but admittedly it's not my usual as it's the other side of the city for me, therefore this was the first time I'd been since the revamp and had been invited along to tryout their new menu.
It is a Greene King Pub & Grill so obviously grills are their speciality. The menu is built around quality chargrilled steak, chicken, fish alongside vegetarian dishes and burgers, plus a choice of pub classics.
We were greeted upon entering and our reservation confirmed. We were then led to our table. Nine months on and the decor is still looking good. It has quite a homely feel to. Framed quotes such as 'Life is better when you're laughing' adorn the walls.
The pub is family friendly but as we go in the evening it appears to be mainly couples and friends dining, with the odd one or two after work lone diners but the menu caters for most. They offer a full-service at your table, letting guests sit back and relax as soon as they walk through the door , letting the staff do the hard work.
The drinks range is designed to complement the grills perfectly and includes quality cask ales, full bodied red and refreshing white wines plus all the latest gins, cocktails and more. I'm driving so it's just a small red shiraz and a sparkling water for me.
There's a varied menu of starters which includes both vegetarian and vegan options as well as the likes of halloumi fries and chicken liver patè or sharing nachos if you prefer. I don't want anything too heavy as a starter so I opt for the Mini Baked Camembert which is served with char-grilled sourdough bread, caramelised red onion chutney and char-grilled peppers. It has a kind of christmassy feel about it and is a warm and tasty start to the meal as I scoop up the rich creamy camembert.
My partner has gone for the Crispy Squid. It is cooked in a crispy spiced coating and served with a sweet and spicy chilli sauce and a dressed salad with spring onion and mayonnaise.
For some years I was vegetarian, I'm not anymore but have experienced veggie food good and bad and seen it change and improve over the years. I do try and limit the amount of meat I eat as it was national vegan day I thought I'd try their version of vegan fish and chips. I've had it at another eatery before and wasn't impressed, but I'm pleased to say that this take on the classic is actually really nice. The texture and taste of the fish is as spot on as you can be. The chips too were as I like them; chunky, golden and crispy on the outside and spot and fluffy in the middle.
As they're known for their grills, my partner opts for the half a grilled chicken. It is cooked well and served with char-grilled tomatoes on the vine, char-grilled vegetables, watercress and char-grilled half garlic. Personally it would have been nicer if the garlic was cooked more. I love roast garlic when you can squeeze it from the bulb, but this wasn't cooked enough for us.
I admit I was pretty full by now but if you're going to make a proper job of reviewing then you've got to try all the courses, right? That's my excuse anyway because I love a dessert. There were several that tempted me; Banoffee Pie, Triple Chocolate Brownie, but in the end I settled on the Cookie Dough Cheesecake Freakshake. Let me tell you; I would go to the Nottingham Knight for this alone. Thick vanilla and cookie dough cheesecake shake with toffee sauce, topped with mini marshmallows, fluffy cream and cookie dough cheesecake. It was just amazing. My other half said he was too full for a pudding - more fool him I say!
So I leave with a very full but happy tummy, and the prices are pretty wallet friendly too!