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Be prepared for a wait at the Rose and Crown, but it’s worth it
THE Rose and Crown’s menu warns you to allow time between ordering and the food arriving.
It’s just as well, but the food is worth the wait. The gastro pub is not the cheapest place to eat in Colchester’s outlying villages, although customers may know that before they go.
But they do go. We arrived at 7.30pm on a Tuesday night and the restaurant was already full.
With price in mind, and the promise of free rolls, we opted for just one starter, the pea and ham soup, a special of the day.
Before that came, we were given our first treat when two plates of goats cheese and sundried tomatoes were set down in front of us.
They went down well. If you like mushy peas, you’ll like the soup, which was served with a seeded granary roll and bits of cooked ham.
My fellow diner opted to order from the more basic bar menu, while I stayed close to the evening carte. She went for the pan-fried sausages, served on a bed of creamy mashed potato and caramelised onion gravy, which was filling without being exceptional. For once, she wasn’t able to clear her plate.
My pan-seared Dingley Dell pork, grain mustard mash and asparagus was impeccably presented. The meat was ready-cut and partnered the mash and asparagus brilliantly.
I was particularly impressed with the mustard mash, which I did not even need to mix with the gravy as I usually do.
I was just about able to finish my plate, but as my dad used to say: “Waste not, want not.”
When our waitress asked if we wanted a look at the dessert menu, I didn’t hesitate.
However, I was the only one as my other half had clearly had enough. But that didn’t stop her dipping into my three scoops of sorbet and ice cream. I opted for butterscotch, vanilla and passion fruit, but at £5.50 I thought it was a bit steep. All in all, though, for a couple who fancy a nice quiet night out, it’s an ideal place to go.
THE BILL Pea and ham soup - £4.50 Pork sausages, creamy mash and caramelised onion gravy - £12 Pan-seared Dingley Dell pork, mustard mash and asparagus - £16 Ice creams and sorbet - £5.50 THE VERDICT Atmosphere: Three stars Food: Four stars Decor: Four stars Value: Three stars Service: Four stars Disabled access: Yes