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Restaurant Review – The Moonraker, Bradford on Avon

Kind of a new restaurant review today…

We ate at the Milking Parlour back in October and it has recently been renamed as The Moonraker. We loved the tasting menu we ate there last time so were looking forward to revisiting this place which has recently gone through a rebrand.

I’m not sure what I was expecting but it was lovely to see that there was very little change in the welcoming dining room and bar and they hadn’t try to fix what wasn’t broken! I was also glad to see there was still a strong emphasis on using lots of local ingredients and produce grown within the grounds.

We ordered my favourite red (a Chilean merlot) and waited for our first course. As we were sampling the taster menu, we didn’t get an actual menu to peruse which I didn’t mind because a) we aren’t fussy and will eat pretty much anything and b) it kept an element of surprise to the evening!

Our first course was soup served with toasted bread in a cup and saucer. The soup itself was a rich beef broth with beef tongue, winter vegetables and girolle mushrooms. I know some people may balk at the idea of tongue but it was delicious and full of flavour.

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A slight moan about these next two courses as they were exactly the same as the ones we ate on our last visit. I would hope that a taster menu would change at least monthly so whilst they were both absolutely delicious (the beetroot salad was my favourite course!) it was a tad disappointing not to try something new.

Anyway, next up we had an incredible salad of lightly pickled beetroot, whipped goats cheese and micro greens served with peanuts, walnuts and a glaze. The crunch of the nuts really added to this salad and I could have eaten two or three plates of this!

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We had hay-smoked salmon after that served with an apple and celeriac remoulade and leaves. We both love smoked salmon and this went down well with the rich fish complimenting the creamy remoulade.

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For our main course, we had another interesting meat choice in the form of venison. This was made into a chilli and served with gnocchi. I’m a bit love/hate with gnocchi – I don’t mind it as an accompaniment but find a whole bowl of it a bit chewy and dense. Luckily, there was a good amount of venison served with the pasta. The chilli was quite spicy for me but full of flavour.

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Finally, for pudding we had a wafer-thin crisp filled with caramel and topped with a chocolate crème brulee. This was incredible, rich but incredible! I’m not too sure what the little amaretto biscuit on the side added to the dish but I loved it.

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Up to this point, I couldn’t fault the service but as per our first visit, we found that we struggled to get a waiter’s attention to pay. I was too tired to wait around so marched up and paid at the bar instead – my only real complaint, especially as this was the second time it had happened.

We found another deal on Amazon for this meal which I would recommend as it means you get a real bargain for some excellent quality food.

Restaurant Review – The Kings Arms, Monkton Farleigh

Despite frequenting our local pub on a weekly basis for drinks, Ian and I have still not had dinner here since we moved to the village.

Some of the items on the menu are a bit pricey so I think we have been waiting for a special occasion to eat here and a belated birthday meal was the perfect excuse!

We started with a good bottle of red and some freshly baked bread to nibble on.

We decided to have some bar snacks in place of starters so ordered one of their famous scotch eggs, served with a lovely chutney, and some warm pork crackling with apple sauce. Both were very tasty although I feel I should apologise to the people on the table behind us for the loud crunching whilst tackling the pork crackling!

For our mains, Ian had the venison which was served with fondant potato, curly kale, beetroot and a parsnip and vanilla puree. The meat had a lovely rich gaminess to it and the puree was really delicious.

I am currently having a fish phase where it is all I have fancied for dinner over the past week (in fact, I am making fish pie for dinner tonight!) so I opted for the ale-battered fish and triple cooked chips which also came with lovely little pots of pea puree and homemade tartar sauce. The chips were the highlight for me; crunchy on the outside and fluffy on the inside – perfect!

Despite being quite full, we shared a pudding of pear bakewell tart, served with a pear puree and some mini pears drizzled in honey. All elements complemented each other although I wish I had asked for some cream as the tart was ever so slightly dry without some sort of sauce.

Overall, the meal was very enjoyable. The pub has a nice, relaxed atmosphere and the quality of the food is excellent. In fact, I only wish we had decided to eat here sooner!