Pumpkin & Ginger Soup


Roast Beef



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© John Farren

Meeting 359 -" Lunch at The Belgian Arms"
Sunday 2nd December 2012

       Every year the Berkshire Branch chooses a new and interesting restaurant to have Sunday lunch around Christmas time. This year 26 members visited the Belgian Arms at Holyport. Over the years this pub has been a favourite local watering hole with a growing emphasis on food. In the late summer 2012, the pub re-opened under the ownership and guidance of Nick Parkinson, whose Royal Oak at Paley street achieved its first Michelin Star in 2009.
       Organising the event was easy and everyone we met was very helpful. This continued on to the actual lunch where we were served efficiently by the friendly staff who ensured that the food was delivered to the table promptly.
       The glass of house prosecco on arrival was excellent, setting one in the right mood. For me the star starter on the menu for me was the Wild Mushrooms on Toast with a Poached Egg but the Paté de Campagne and the Pumpkin and Ginger soup were also appreciated. Mains included deliciously cooked beef, still red in the middle, but also provided better done for those who wanted it that way, and Skate wing. There was a vegetarian option based on Spatzle. Puds included a very tasty Crème Brulée with Shortbread, Chocolate Tarte or Cheese and Biscuits.
       This was accompanied by two of Nick's house wines. Nick has negotiated a deal which allows him to provide a range of his own wines rather than those from the brewery. This enables him to offer the Picpoul de Pinet and an excellent South African Shiraz from Partnership Vinyards which we all enjoyed. These, and other house wines, are available in half litre carafes, a very suitable quantity for two people dining together.
       Altogether a very pleasant environment to have Sunday Lunch with friends and enjoy good food and good wine - it even came in on Budget! We wish Nick, the head Chef Dominic Chapman and their team all the best and look forward to visiting again soon.(Chris Graham)

       The Starters presented a choice of:

Pumpkin & Ginger Soup
Paté de Campagne
Mushroom Ragout on toast with poached egg

       The Main Course choices were:
Spatzle with mushrooms & squash
Skate wing
Roast beef (cooked medium rare)

       The Dessert choices were:
Crème Brûlée
Chocolate Tart
Cheese and biscuits

The Belgian Arms

Crème Caramel

Chocolate Tart