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Traditional pub pleasures at The Full Moon in Little Kingshill
SOMETIMES you visit a pub and can only hope it lives up to the promise it makes as you enter.
The Full Moon is just such a place. Nestled out of the way in Little Kingshill’s countryside, the building has a lovely, old-fashioned appearance, along with a very inviting garden area.
It’s exactly the sort of place that looks like it should serve a good pint and a fine plate of food, and my wife and I hoped we weren’t in for a disappointment as we strolled in.
It has a warm, comfortable feel that sums up everything a good English pub should be. There was a nice, cosy buzz to the atmosphere on the night we visited.
The service was good – attentive and efficient, with courses coming at the perfect pace. But next came the acid test – the food.
And thankfully there wasn’t a single disappointment across any of the three courses we sampled.
The a la carte menu is offers a plentiful choice without being overwhelming.
After being briefly tempted by a sharing selection – a mezze and an oriental platter caught our eye – both my wife and I decided to take to the seas for our starters.
She went for black tiger prawns pan fried in brandy sauce, served with rocket and a garlic and lemon aioli, and was delighted with her choice. The prawns were tasty and succulent, and she thoroughly enjoyed the punchy balance of flavours.
I opted for whitebait, deep fried in spices and served with a salad dressed in a tasty wholegrain mustard sauce, along with a dollop of tartare sauce. It was my first try of whitebait, and I enjoyed every mouthful it, the flavour of the fish given a warming zing from the spiced flour.
For main I decided on lamb shank in red wine and rosemary sauce, served with a healthy portion of mash and green beans. It may be a tried and tested dish, but this version didn’t disappoint. The meat was full of flavour and beautifully cooked – it fell off the bone with barely a nudge of my fork. The sauce was delicate but hearty, perfect for mopping up with the smooth, thick mash.
My wife opted for the duck breast served with crisp sautéed potatoes and plum sauce. Again, she enjoyed a generous portion of perfectly cooked meat, it’s flavours complemented by the tangy sauce.
Feeling pleasantly full, we decided to share a pudding. The desert menu is crammed with familiar favourites such as bread and butter pudding, chocolate brownies and sticky toffee pudding. But we chose the intriguingly named elderflower, blackberry and Madagascan pudding. Not sure what to expect we were left with a light, spongy pudding adorned with almonds and with a layer of blackberry at its base – a perfectly enjoyable end to the meal.
It was a pleasure, then, to discover The Full Moon is one of those pubs that delivers exactly what it promises - a good range of beer, a nice selection of wines and some splendid dishes that offer good value for money. Steak lovers can take advantage of a dedicated Tuesday night menu, while a selection of lunchtime specials all come at very reasonable prices.
The Full Moon may not be reinventing the wheel but that is precisely its charm. It does a superb job in celebrating the traditions of the English pub menu and fits right into the scenic Bucks countryside.
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