In my quest to persuade my beloved son that he can eat something other than margherita pizza when we’re out and about, we’re making a point of finding eateries where it isn’t even on the menu! Last Sunday it was bitterly cold, one of those days to curl up in front of an open fire, with some good food, and good company. I may not have actually curled up in front of the fire, but I ticked off my other requirements with a visit to The Fat Fox Inn in Watlington.
The Fat Fox Inn in Watlington is located in the south of Oxfordshire, and is easy to reach from the M40, Oxford and Henley. We’d been warned about road works on the motorway, so headed across country, enjoying the views across the Chilterns along the way. The area seems to have even more Red Kites than we do here, and it was lovely to see them soaring above us.
The pub restaurant is easy to find in the town and there’s ample parking. As soon as we walked into The Fat Fox Inn there was a lovely, comfortable feeling and a log fire burning. Result.
There’s plenty of seating areas within the pub, and a large dining room, which would be perfect for family gatherings and birthday parties. We were more than happy to sit with a view of the fire.
There isn’t a specific children’s menu at The Fat Fox Inn in Watlington but you can order smaller portions of the main meals for £7.00. I found them to be really helpful when we tried to accommodate a rather fussy 6 year old, which was much appreciated, and made my dining experience that much more pleasurable.
We ordered some breads from the appetisers selection and for starters Daddy P ordered The Fat Fox Inn Scotch Egg, whilst I decided on the Country Pate.
The Scotch Egg was served with celeriac remoulade and a mustard mayonnaise. I’m reliably informed that it was extremely good, but the menfolk polished it off, without a thought for me! So I guess if it passes the Monkey son test it must be good. He also enjoyed the toasty hot rolls with a knob of butter.
My Country Pate was served with spiced chutney and toast. The pate and chutney were devine. Another slice of toast would have been appreciated to accompany the generous serving of pate. But I really couldn’t fault my starter at all.
The staff were attentive but not intrusive, and we all just loved the feel of the place. Eating out with children can be stressful at times, especially with a contrary boy who can make mealtimes out an awkward experience at times! Looking through the main meal selection we decided on the Pan Roast Hake for my son. He loves fish, so I knew that would be a good option. He wasn’t so keen on the idea of braised chard and roasted red peppers, so we changed those for sprouting broccoli and carrots. The hake was also served with a pine nut and raisin dressing.
The fish was beautifully moist and an empty plate and a happy child ensured that we all enjoyed our meals.
Daddy P opted for the Roast Topside of Calnans Beef, served with horseradish and trimmings, whilst I opted for Roast local Belly Pork, with apple sauce and trimmings. These were served with enough Sunday vegetables and roast potatoes for all.
My pork was wonderful, perfectly cooked and pull of flavour, with a lovely bit of crackling too. It was just lovely. Daddy P said exactly the same thing about the beef. Really good, hearty roasts, and perfect for a cold autumn day. We couldn’t fault the food at all.
Anyone who knows me, knows that I do love my puddings. Dessert is never optional. Monkey went for some vanilla ice cream, unsurprisingly Daddy P chose the Apple and Berry crumble. I’m a sucker for a Sticky Toffee pudding so that was me sold.
As expected, the desserts were great, the best crumble Daddy P has had in a while apparently. High praise indeed. In fact we were both really impressed with everything about The Fat Fox Inn in Watlington, The food was fab, good value for money and hearty. It’s somewhere we’d make a point of returning to and the atmosphere worked really well with my son. If he’s happy and comfortable, then I’m happy too.
disclosure: we were given a complimentary meal in exchange for an honest review