Spring has sprung in Winchester which means weekend walks in the sunshine. While it’s not quite warm enough for me for outside dining, I now do like to have a Sunday lunch rather than dinner in front of the fire.
My sister in law was visiting for the weekend and I’d gone all out for Saturday night dinner, lamb tagine, homemade flatbread and a lush red (or two) from Toscanaccio
We didn’t really do breakfast so instead decided on a lunch out before she headed home. Thus began the ritual ringing of places to see if they had a table. First up was King Alfred. We’ve only been there for breakfast and drinks and really like it there so I wasn’t really suprised that they didn’t have tables with one hours notice. Gotta be more London style prepared for there. So instead we decided to give Westgate a whirl. I think I’ve only been there a couple of times for a drink and like lots of pubs in Winchester, it’s nice, clean and worth a punt. We called but they said there would be no need to book. You can take it as a positive or negative I suppose, but I don’t particularly like jostling for spaces when I go out, so fine by me.
Comfy seats when we arrived and a short but straight to the point menu. Three choices of meat roasts: chicken, lamb and beef and then a couple of vegetarian options which almost took my fancy. However the roast came with cauliflower cheese and bread sauce which I only ever have at Christmas so I went for the chicken. Boyo went for the lamb. We also ordered a selection of bread and butters too. I have a thing about butter. And bread.
While we waited I had a Bloody Mary (obvs). It was good. Not too spicy, but they brought me the worcester sauce to add myself. Would have liked some tabasco to add and fresh peppercorns, but actually the tomato juice was flavoursome enough.
All arrived at the same time as we requested.
Things we liked:
- bread was fresh, warm, with three different varieties.
- butters – not all of us were into the anchovy butter, but I was a fan. Maybe add in one plain butter for the more fussy consumer
- The chicken was really well cooked – crispy and nicely seasoned skin. MMmm chicken skin
- Lamb – really nicely cooked
- Veggies were cooked al dente
- Cauliflower cheese – pucker
- portion sizes were great, we were full but not leaving waste
- Gravy – was on the side so we could pour our own. Halleluiah – praise be.
Things some of us liked, some of us had opinions on:
- I like a Yorkshire Pud – these were of a goodly size. My companions prefer more soggy ones. I like to make mine soggy.
- Bread sauce – I again was a fan, but the others thought there was too strong flavour of cloves
- The number of potatoes. I think two is enough. Husband doesn’t agree. But then again he’ll eat potatoes till he starts sweating so I’m all for someone imposing a limit on him
Service was good, I had a nice glass of wine.
All in all we were very happy with Westgate as an option. I see they do a number of offer nights, steak and wine, two cocktails for a tenner. Good stuff Westgate – keep it up and we’ll be back for sure.