We simply couldn’t resist an invitation to review the new menu at the recently refurbished Beaufort Arms in Stoke Gifford, so I went along with my friend Andy to partake of this culinary treat.
On arrival, I was immediately impressed by the redecorated, freshly painted interior. Also by the bar staff, who were friendly and welcoming. Customers were already gathering, and after meeting our busy host, Mark Falzon, we made our way to a table in the dining area, and were soon sipping our introductory drinks.
In the dining area there were a number of round or square wooden tables, complemented by a diverse range of low and high-backed chairs to suit all tastes and comforts. From our table there was a lovely outlook on to the green, with the gorgeous weather that day enhancing the overall experience.
It was hard to pick just one item per course from the extensive menu a la carte, but I finally selected a Prawn Cocktail starter, followed by Surf and Turf main course, and Crème Brûlée dessert. My friend ordered from the set menu, Beer Battered Mushrooms, then Beer Battered Whiting and Chips, and Treacle Sponge. Alas! the treacle sponge was obviously so popular it had already been demolished, so Andy chose Banoffee Pie instead.
The prawn cocktail arrived on a wooden platter, very attractively presented and tempting the taste buds. The seafood sauce was not too sweet, a refreshing change, particularly good for a diabetic. Andy’s beer battered mushrooms were presented in a mini-bucket and looked very appetising, with sour cream and chive dip, and pronounced delicious!
When our main courses arrived, I was pleasantly surprised by the generous portion of Surf and Turf, comprising lovely thick piece of juicy, tender rare steak, with succulent scampi balls and big, tasty chips. An added touch was the knob of parsley butter, which complemented the flavour of the steak. Andy’s beer battered whiting and chips were very well presented, with not one but two fillets, garden peas, and tartare sauce, and he enjoyed every mouthful.
Feeling pleasantly replete, awaiting our desserts, we had a chance to relax and take in the general ambience of the dining area, including the gentle buzz of conversation from other, obviously contented patrons.
Desserts arrived; mine was the delicious Crème Brûlée, and our host informed us that a former guest had commented that she’d travelled the world and this was “the best Crème Brûlée she’d ever had” … I’d have to agree! Although the piece de resistance in my opinion, was Andy’s gorgeous Banoffee Pie, topped with butterscotch sauce, whipped cream and milk chocolate shavings, that just gave it the edge. From the smile on Andy’s face (and the envious one on mine!) it was clear he found it totally delectable.
All in all, a truly scrumptious meal, cooked to perfection, with generous portions. Absolutely no reason to leave with anything other than that full, satisfied feeling! Many thanks to our host Mark and his friendly team. We will return with friends!
Photo: Staff of The Beaufort Arms, Stoke Gifford.
Author Karen Dean and her friend Andy enjoyed a complimentary “preview lunch” at the Beaufort Arms on 31st October, hours before its official reopening following a five-day closure for refurbishment.