Monday, 18 February 2019

THE CRICKETERS INN - Curdridge lane, Southampton.

In the true spirit of pub exploration, we were actually looking for a different pub when we came across The Cricketers. Rather than risk wasting time searching for the pub on our hit list, we decided to go with the hand of fate and see what was on offer.

Firstly, there was a car park, so that's a good start. Secondly, and most gratifying, was the warm welcome we received upon entry. It is the easiest thing to do, and has a huge effect on your first impressions of a pub, but it still astounds us how rare it is. After the standard drinks, menu, table scenario, we got stuck in to the menu. It wasn't massive, but that is no bad thing. When the food is made from scratch, it makes sense not to overload the menu, creating a nightmare for those in the kitchen. Most mains came in just under £14, which is pushing in to the pricy bracket, but we try not to be too judgmental about pricing until we have tried the food.

Since it had been a while, we stripped it back to basics, both opting for a pub classic. Fish and chips for me, and ham, egg and chips for Dad. After our order was taken, we settled down and soaked up the surroundings. We both came to the conclusion that this was a good place to be. A comfortable and relaxed vibe, ably assisted by some appropriate music at an appropriate level, a perfect temperature, and a good amount of light. Now it was all down to the food to finish the job.

My fish and chips came out on a long rectangular plate, which I liked. The main bulk of the meal was bookended by a pot of pees on one side, and a pot of tartar sauce on the other. The fish was cooked perfectly in a light batter. The chips were hand cut, homemade, and all together wonderful. Dad of course had the same chips keeping company with his honey glazed ham, which was apparently very good ham.

On a day where destiny had guided us to the unexpected, all the elements of a perfect pub lunch aligned, leaving us both with absolutely nothing to grumble about. The service was friendly and faultless throughout, the food was great and as I said, The Cricketers is just a wonderful place to be. The food may be a few quid more than some other pubs, but we are happy to pay it when this is the result.

Atmosphere   9
Service         9
Food              9
Value            8
Verdict         5*