Thin end of the veg

THE INN CROWD: The Fair­fax won the award for York­shire’s best Sun­day lunch but needs to do bet­ter when busy, writes

Yorkshire Post - YP Magazine - - Front Page -

O be de­clared the Best Sun­day Lunch in York­shire is some ac­co­lade. We know a thing or three about a Sun­day roast in this county and to be called the best is praise in­deed. The proud re­cip­i­ent of the award is the Fair­fax Inn at Gilling, North York­shire. Given the only ta­ble I could man­age to se­cure for a Sun­day lunch was the last serv­ing at 1.30pm, it seems the word is al­ready out there.

I can only imag­ine that Gilling is quite the sleepy coun­try idyll when not packed with cars vy­ing for the elu­sive park­ing places close to the pub. On a sunny af­ter­noon, ev­ery ta­ble out­side the pub was full and in­side just the same. There was no greet­ing from the staff as they were all heads down and busy. The at­mos­phere was fre­netic to say the least, and though only to be ex­pected, I have seen places busier yet much calmer.

We had ar­rived a lit­tle ahead of sched­ule but wor­ry­ingly, by the time they wanted us seated the guests join­ing us had still not ar­rived. There was no flex­i­bil­ity from the gen­tle­man check­ing off names at the bar; if they didn’t ar­rive by 2pm the kitchen would be closed he told us rather firmly. They did ar­rive with 15 min­utes to spare by which time, un­for­tu­nately, we had al­ready started eat­ing.

Given the prom­ise of an award­win­ning lunch our or­der was beef, pork and chicken roasts, but fish and chips, salmon and a veg­etable lasagne are also avail­able. And, for those with the ap­petite and the time, there is also a choice of 10 tra­di­tional starters.

With the meats, there was lit­tle com­plaint. The slices of strip loin beef were thick and cooked pink(ish). There was more gris­tle than ac­cept­able, but we grudg­ingly agreed this was per­haps once again due to the late­ness of our lunch.

The wait­ress seemed a lit­tle flus­tered at our re­quest for more veg.

PIC­TURES: TONY JOHN­SON.

Main pic­ture right, half roast chicken from the Sun­day lunch menu; above, a starter of chicken liver and or­ange par­fait with tomato chut­ney and toasted brioche; far left, banana split, left, sticky tof­fee sun­dae; inset be­low, the in­te­rior of the Fair­fax Inn.

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