3 Berkshire pubs perfect for a family meal
PUBLISHED: 16:59 07 May 2015 | UPDATED: 15:39 22 February 2018
When you need to eat out with everyone from the toddlers to great-grandparents, finding the right pub for lunch or dinner will make everyone’s day
Jolly Farmer, Cookham Dean
You’ll find this truly local pub, bought by villagers over 25 years ago, perfect for all generations from tots to grandparents. Older visitors will appreciate the traditional pub feel and the chaps (and some ladies, no doubt) will want to try the beers, including a couple from Marlow’s Rebellion Brewery.
Go on a sunny day and you can make the most of the large beer garden, plus there’s a children’s play area. Not that they need to go short of exercise as the pub is surrounded by beautiful countryside for a family walk, whether that’s a gentle stroll or lengthier route.
There’s food of one sort or another being served from noon to 9pm, take your pick of bar snacks, brunch, lunch or dinner. The Sunday roasts are very popular, you’ll need to book for one of those. Children have a small dedicated menu, plus ‘little plates’ can be served for them. Even the fussiest eater will find something to enjoy.
White Hart Inn, Hamstead Marshall
You just can’t go wrong here, with dishes to suit just about every palate and a kitchen willing to whip up treats for the littlest ones. The children will be fed, any vegetarians will not be moaning (there are always some good and unusual choices) and traditional and truly local fare will delight older guests.
How about the Berkshire Country Board with a feast of meaty treats to share, or mains such as Trio of Hungerford Pork (served with sweet potato fondant, kale and cider jus), or Newbury Lamb Hotpot and Rare Saddle with baby spinach, butternut squash and rosemary jus? The tasty local sausages will go down a treat, too. Main meals can be served in ‘mini’ versions for children, all priced proportionately.
The puddings, if you’ve saved room, will go down at treat, ranging from traditional favourites such as spotted dick and custard or jam roly poly to a mum’s favourite of coffee & pecan mousse with vanilla pod cream.
Beers include choices from West Berkshire Brewery, so raise your glasses to a great family feast.
The Crown, Playhatch
This lovely 16th century pub, handy for Reading, Henley and Maidenhead has an excellent outside area as well as being very pretty inside. The team are proud of their family-friendly offerings and children have their own menu offering dishes such as a small steak with chips and salad to burgers for those who won’t look further, all at £6 each, with desserts of fruit salad and ice cream, or just ice cream at £2.95.
Of course if they’ve accompanied you on Sunday there’s the children’s roastie option for £7 while adults tuck in to the carvery meats, seasonal vegetables, Yorkshire puds, roast potatoes and hearty gravy (£13).
Non-meat eaters will also find some choices, alongside those looking for something a little different. The owners have a South African background so as well as pub classics you’ll find a dinner menu featuring Durban Chicken & Prawn Curry (£14) and Bobojie (£13.50) a traditional and very tasty South African mince bake dating to the 17th century. Steaks can even be served with what they call ‘Monkey Gland sauce’, although we’re assured there are no monkeys in it!
The pub also has rooms so you or guests can stay over – handy for family big occasions.