Tasty meals at a price that’s right
TEA-TIME is fast approaching, the relatives have dropped in and stomachs around the room are rumbling so loud they could be mistaken for claps of thunder.
Hunger is reaching high-risk levels but the only person capable of operating the cooker is more “Cordon urrgh” than Cordon Bleu. She has been known to cremate chips in her time and can also lay claim to serving the world’s only Tarmac toad-in-the-hole.
So with no one wishing to devour another road surface, we opted to head out in search of sustenance. We needed somewhere that could satisfy all palettes ranging from still-in-nappies to OAPs without snapping the purse strings.
That place was the Harvester – an establishment where those who like to eat early are royally rewarded in the shape of generous portions and even more generous prices.
Things didn’t start too well as the two members of our party who arrived earlier than the rest were told the could not be seated.
A party apparently has to be complete before they can be given a table which hardly represents a warm welcome on a midweek afternoon when the place was pretty much deserted.
Credit where it is due though, and the chain’s superb Earlybird promotion (which at the time offered discounted dining until 6.30pm, seven days-a-week, but has since been extended to 10pm) certainly pulls in the punters.
By the time we left there was not an empty table in sight and the complimentary salad cart was barely visible through the gathered hordes all attempting a Guinness Book of Records entry for the most mountainous portion possible without spillage.
We ourselves had been there earlier after opting to skip starters and tuck straight in to main courses, but we had hardly had time to settle back down before our selections arrived.
There is a fine line between speedy, efficient service and being rushed out of the door. Our party felt what started as the former turned into the latter when a bill was slapped onto our table without request, barely a couple of bites into dessert.
Back to the main courses though, and we were all pretty pleased with our choices which featured melt-inthe-mouth Scottish breaded scampi and chips (£5.99), a sizable and succulent gammon steak (served with egg, £4.99), a Harvester burger (£4.99) and a bacon and cheese burger (£5.99) which were both tasty and filling if a tad on the dry side.
The two little ones sampled the simply pasta and chunky battered fish dishes from the Young Guest options. The pasta came with a large slab of garlic bread and the fish, chips and beans went down our youngest child’s neck quicker than Usain Bolt bursts out of the blocks.
Both set us back £3.99, which also included visits to the salad cart.
They were followed by desserts of sundae best (£1) and raspberry jelly (50p) which were clearly satisfying but chosen from a rather dull and healthy list of just three options.
As for the adults, the Rocky Horrors (that’s the desserts not the elderly members of our troupe) were terrific with cream and soft vanilla ice cream melting over a warm bed of chocolate fudge cake. They were well worth their £2.99 price tag.
Good reports were also received on the lemon blizzard sundae (£2.99) which was basically a