Me: Ham hock terrine, (because I am always insanely jealous when other people order it) and rib eye steak (because the steak and ale pie was sold out), and chocolate creme brulee.
Himself: Garden Pea Soup (more for the bread than the soup, I suspect) followed by the rib eye again (for the same reason as above), and sticky toffee pudding.
Mother of Himself: Salmon fillet, and sticky toffee. Salmon because she didn’t want a lot of food at that time of night and sticky toffee because they’d sold out of strawberry cheesecake.
I can only speak for myself, though the pictures do say it too.
The terrine was succulent, substantial shreds of ham populating a well seasoned jelly. Plenty of ham. It came with what was described on the menu as picallili. Cadmium yellow cauliflower florets, two tiny onions and a piece of carrot. Not picallili as I thought I knew it, though the pieces tasted like it.
As I ate it all up, I realised that the dry pickles were essential for the balance with the succulent terrine. They foiled the richness and didn’t add extra goop to the plate. An edge of sweetness was added with a swirl of molasses-sweet syrup, just hinting. And though I pined for thickly buttered, brown bread, it couldn’t have been possible. The portion was quite substantial enough for a greedy starter. It is the greedy person’s continual lesson that their eyes are bigger than their stomachs.
The rib eye steak came exactly as I had asked (medium-rare, erring on the rare) with more than enough giant wedge chips and hidden beneath the steak was half a Portobello and some roast cherry tomatoes with their stalks still in.
No green veg to take your mind off the prize. More importantly, no side salad cluttering up the plate. The steak juices that lightly washed the plate gave each mouthful a warm, spicy suggestion. The tomatoes were sweet and juicy and the mushroom seasoned just so.
The chocolate creme brulee was divine; heady, addictive and lucious on the tongue. Its accompanying homemade shortbread biscuits crisply broke and then melted in the mouth. The combination of the rich chocolate and a slight malt cream basenote was a hedonist’s luxury. Added to which, the portion was generous. So often creme brulee is presented in a wide, shallow ramekin. It could have been 150ml, maybe even more.
It was a rocking meal. Big flavours with modernism and tradition at its core. The Kings Head in Ravenstonedale is a must-eat for any who haven’t been yet.