Tuesday, October 16

Expensive pub food

According to the latest Pub Guide (today's Times), ordinary pubs are cashing in on the success of gastro-pubs and overcharging by almost 70 per cent for standard meals such as steak pie or fish and chips. An average two course lunch with glass of wine comes in at £20; a steak & kidney pie £10.50. The Guide contrasts this with the average Brittany restaurant where £6.60 buys a litre of wine, mineral water and coffee - and as much as you can eat from the buffet. As a frequent visitor to Brittany restaurants I’d advise you take this claim with a large pinch of Saxo; and lets face it, we don’t always relish dining out on stewed horse meat and garlic flavoured crawly things. That said, 9 out of 10 English pubs do serve a vastly inferior product and bill you in gold pressed latinum for the privilege. Too many kitchens are staffed by the landlord’s wife (think Stan Ogden with tits); ex-local authority dinner ladies mit frying pan; or spotty-faced graduates from catering college that believe they’re the next Jamie Oliver, yet can barely microwave pizza. I know from past experience that finding competent chefs/cooks for run-of-the-mill restaurants is a near impossibility; finding bodies to cook decent pub food is a virtual non-starter. Ergo, pub food is crap and its price should reflect this. Pound to a penny someone will determine it’s all Thatcher’s fault.

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