I think I'm right in saying, this was our first review in a PO20 postcode, there's an interesting fact for you. After trekking through villages hither to unheard of, we reached the pub promised land, where reviewing could begin in Ernest.
We have recently enjoyed a spate of good weather and alfresco dining, so we were heartened to see that this pub had two garden options, one just for grownups. That is where we headed, drinks and menus in hand. The menu's here are big, big in actual size, and big in options. We always get a bit nervous when we are given a big menu, it is so often the advert of a cheap and cheerful kitchen. However, after some lengthy exploration, we held judgment. The menu was actually quite interesting, and if you can't find something you like the sound of here, you would be better off staying at home with a bowl of cornflakes.
There are baguettes, jackets, sharing boards, basket meals and a grill section, not to mention your standard starters and mains. We were also struck by the value on offer. The basket meals were around £7, and the standard mains were mostly just over £10. We decided to start off with some garlic bread, making the most of the relaxing bubble we found ourselves in. I followed that with a fish pie whilst Dad went for his favourite, ham, egg and chips. It is as always important to note, that the literature made it clear that everything was homemade, and that ingredients, including the fish for my pie, were locally sourced.
Our bread was delivered by the extremely welcoming and friendly landlady, who couldn't have been a better host. It came on a hot skillet, and was very nice in deed. Crisp on the outside and oozing with garlic goodness. Next came the main event. My pie came with a beautiful selection of beautifully cooked vegetables. Generally an underrated part of so many meals, these were possibly the best vegetables I've ever been served in a pub. My fish pie was delicious. As a twist on the standard mash topping, this pie was finished off with more of a cheesy potato gratin, the slices of potato covering the tasty fish beneath. Dad's eggs, plural, were free range, and sat comfortably amongst the good quality ham and well cooked chips.
Visiting The Prince of Wales was an absolute pleasure. The landlady was everything you wish for, making us feel welcome without being overbearing. She was also kind enough to bring our food and drinks out to us in the garden, so plenty of brownie points there. The food was very good, obviously executed by a fully competent chef. It is sometimes easy to overlook the simple things and to neglect the less glamorous element of a meal, but there is a skill to preparing vegetables properly, raising them to become a main feature of a meal, rather than a necessary accompaniment. On top of that, for the food to come in at a very reasonable price was the cherry on the cake. Although I don't like cherries, let's say the grape on the cake. We wouldn't hesitate to come back here, and if you find yourselves in PO20, give it a try.