Monday, 25 May 2009

Fine Ties And Pies

Our Sunday drive yesterday culminated with a visit to Donaghadee Garden Centre in County Down, where a bee-line was made for their excellent self-service restaurant. I think it's not dissimilar to Fulton's Hawthorne Restaurant, in terms of food quality and the kind of food served; though Fulton's is bigger and places more emphasis on salad accompaniments.

We consider the nosh here to be tip-top. Great, traditional, Ulster cooking and no nonsense. The portions are generous, so I asked whether they served smaller helpings and, accordingly, received a small bowl of Irish Stew for the Dowager. I ordered the Steak and Guinness Pie accompanied by mashed potato; sweet, shredded red cabbage; and cauliflower Mornay. Sheer indulgence.

By the time I'd shown the Dowager to her seat a queue of ten had built up, so I waited impatiently for 8-10 minutes! It's a family restaurant; however, the atmosphere was tolerably quiet and we had no trouble finding a table. Empty plates and cutlery seem to be cleared away quickly.

By the way, wheelchairs are readily available adjacent to the tills as you enter.

We enjoyed our meal, as usual. The consistency of the stew was just right and the meat was lean. My meal was tasty and I cleared my plate, as ever. It really is just like good, home-made food - without the time and trouble! We cogitated over having one of their sumptuous puddings, including a range of crumbles, tarts, cheese-cake and strawberry Pavlova; however we'd had sufficient to eat.

The small stew cost £3; and my meal was £7. We had tumblers of Ch√Ęteau Silent Valley!

Later that evening, I won an Ebay bid for three classic National Trust ties. I got them for a song. Presumably ties are less popular nowadays, especially less formal ones which are worn mainly at weekends. I hasten to add that I don't make a habit of wearing ties at weekends; these NT ones proved irresistible at the price, though.

No comments :