Yesterday afternoon Bailey and I decided to drop into The Horse and Jockey in Chorlton for a nice spot of Saturday lunch. We've been boozing to the Horse and Jockey loads of times and love going there, not only for its quaint location on peaceful Chorlton Green but for the range of good quality beers, cosy atmoshphere and mainly the opportunity to nosy at people's cute dogs - of which there are many (being the famously dog-friendly establishment that it is!)
We've been meaning to go there for food for some time but yesterday decided that we'd save a trip to the Horse and Jockey's actual restaurant for another time as we were both feeling in the mood for a good bit of pub grub.
Well I have to say that on our travels around Chorlton today, particularly around Beech Road, you wouldn't have guessed we're in a recession - with every pub and café packed full of people - and the Horse and Jockey was no exception. We were lucky to get a table and there was a big queue at the bar. On the plus side, this did mean there were plenty of dogs to gawp at, including possibly the cutest pug we've ever seen. I will say this though, one of the dangers of eating at a pub full of dogs is that there's the possibility of the piercing sound of barking interrupting your meal!
Anyway we had some drinks while perusing the menu which offers a selection of simple pub classics like burgers, sarnies, jackets, salads and grills before putting our order in. Bailey was pleased to relive our Barcelona experiences with a lovely pint of Estrella Damm while I had a really good Cappuccino.
Being impatient, I did find the wait at the bar a little frustrating and I think there could perhaps have been a few more staff on and the lady who served me seemed a bit glum. Perhaps no one had expected such a busy lunchtime. All the food everyone around us was eating looked and smelled ace so I was happy that we didn't have to wait long for ours at all. Our food was brought out by an absolutely lovely man looking just as mouth-watering and nicely presented.
Bailey's Ultimate Burger looked really impressive, presented on a large board with a basket of golden chips, colourful coleslaw and a floury bun.
He enjoyed every bite of his delicious burger consisting of a flavoursome patty, a fresh, soft burger bun and salty, crisp bacon for texture. He thought the chips were absolutely "spot on" and loved the coleslaw which was packed with cabbage. His only complaints were that the BBQ sauce advertised on the menu appeared to be absent and he thought the patty was just a bit on the pink side for his tastes. Also he didn't think the 'Ultimate' burger quite lived up to its name as he could quite easily devour the whole thing!
I was a bit uninspired by the veggie options and did think there could have been a few more meat-free and fishy choices. I decided against the Vegetarian Platter but regreted it when a few minutes later I saw the couple next to me have one delivered which looked awesome! Definitely getting that next time. Anyway, I'd gone for the Houmous and Roasted Vegetables Sandwich on a Wholemeal Torpedo and also the Add Soup for £2 option which seemed like a great deal.
My lunch also looked really good and I thought it was dead cute that my soup came in a mug with a picture of the Horse and Jockey on! My sandwich had the perfect amount of fillings in, the salad had a really yummy dressing on and the generous portion of hand-cooked crisps that came on the side went really well with the sandwich rather than just being plonked there for presentation. The soup - Red Pepper and Sweet Potato, was absolutely lovely - bags of flavour, creamy and warming - perfect for a cold day. I was really pleased I had it because my Torpedo Roll was quite dense so it balanced that out nicely. I thought the roast veg weren't really that flavoursome but a shake of salt and pepper into my sarnie sorted that out and I really enjoyed it.
As always we really enjoyed our trip to the Horse and Jockey and will definitely be returning for food again - I think we will try out the restaurant upstairs some time soon. In the meantime we all know that dogs + good food + great beer + picturesque setting = a superb place to spend a Saturday lunchtime, so we recommend you pay the Horse and Jockey a visit especially if you are taking your dog out for the day!