Thursday, 2 July 2015

THE BAT AND BALL - Hyden Farm Lane, Clanfield/Hambledon




Although I have visited this pub many times since my last review, I hadn't realised how much time had passed. This caused for a review and refresh mission. I was to be joined on this particular adventure by a clutch of family, ready to assist me on a lazy Sunday afternoon.

As is always the case here, we were greeted warmly and shown to our table. Menu's were distributed and drinks orders were taken. Being a Sunday, there was only ever one outcome for me. I'm sure you already know this, but it is a scientific fact that roast dinners are the finest meal ever created by mankind. Three of our number joined me in the roast camp, covering all the options. Beef, Lamb, vegetarian, and chicken for me. Just to balance things out, George went for the burger. Some of our number are rather keen on the homemade pork scratchings they make at The Bat and Ball, but we came across something new and exciting. Cheese straws, (Another of man's finest creations). We ordered both to nibble on while our mains were being prepared.


The scratchings have always been good, and good they remain. I was personally far more interested in the cheese straws, and I wasn't let down. They were big, flaky, delicious, and I wanted more. I did manage to restrain myself, knowing that the main event wasn't far behind. There aren't many smells which can compete with that of a quality roast dinner. It is deep and rich, an entirely different smell to a sad inferior version. When our food was placed before us, that smell came too. What I really like about the roasts here, is the quality of the vegetables. The very rout of our five a day, they are so often just thrown on as an afterthought, I'm looking at you frozen peas. We were given roasted carrots, mashed Swede, red cabbage, and best of all, a big bowl of cauliflower cheese.

I would like to congratulate The Bat and Ball on their Yorkshire pudding policy. They have fallen in line with my campaign against the, "You can only have a Yorkshire pudding with roast beef", nonsense. The Yorkshire puddings in question were of a good size and graced each of our plates, apart from the one with a burger on it. The meat was all cooked perfectly, the potatoes were tasty, Georges burger was good, and the cauliflower cheese was beautiful.

I think I've made it fairly clear that I visit this pub regularly, and there is a reason for that, and it's not just the wonderful food. The service has always been excellent here, even when the pub is very busy. They are always happy to help, and will do what they can to accommodate. I would happily come here every Sunday for a roast, neatly answering the question... Would you go back? I would, and I do, and if you've never been, I suggest you give it a try.

Atmosphere          8
Service                 10
Food                    8.5
Value                   8
Verdict                 5*

THE BAT AND BALL - Hambledon Although I have visited this pub many times since my last review, I hadn't realised how much time had passed. This caused for a review and refresh mission. I was to be joined on this particular adventure by a clutch of family, ready to assist me on a lazy Sunday afternoon.  As is always the case here, we were greeted warmly and shown to our table. Menu's were distributed and drinks orders were taken. Being a Sunday, there was only ever one outcome for me. I'm sure you already know this, but it is a scientific fact that roast dinners are the finest meal ever created by mankind. Three of our number joined me in the roast camp, covering all the options. Beef, Lamb, vegetarian, and chicken for me. Just to balance things out, George went for the burger. Some of our number are rather keen on the homemade pork scratchings they make at The Bat and Ball, but we came across something new and exciting. Cheese straws, (Another of man's finest creations). We ordered both to nibble on while our mains were being prepared.   The scratchings have always been good, and good they remain. I was personally far more interested in the cheese straws, and I wasn't let down. They were big, flaky, delicious, and I wanted more. I did manage to restrain myself, knowing that the main event wasn't far behind. There aren't many smells which can compete with that of a quality roast dinner. It is deep and rich, an entirely different smell to a sad inferior version. When our food was placed before us, that smell came too. What I really like about the roasts here, is the quality of the vegetables. The very rout of our five a day, they are so often just thrown on as an afterthought, I'm looking at you frozen peas. We were given roasted carrots, mashed Swede, red cabbage, and best of all, a big bowl of cauliflower cheese.   I would like to congratulate The Bat and Ball on their Yorkshire pudding policy. They have fallen in line with my campaign against the, "You can only have a Yorkshire pudding with roast beef", nonsense. The Yorkshire puddings in question were of a good size and graced each of our plates, apart from the one with a burger on it. The meat was all cooked perfectly, the potatoes were tasty, Georges burger was good, and the cauliflower cheese was beautiful.  I think I've made it fairly clear that I visit this pub regularly, and there is a reason for that, and it's not just the wonderful food. The service has always been excellent here, even when the pub is very busy. They are always happy to help, and will do what they can to accommodate. I would happily come here every Sunday for a roast, neatly answering the question... Would you go back? I would, and I do, and if you've never been, I suggest you give it a try.   Atmosphere  8 Service  10 Food   8.5 Value   8 Verdict  5*

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