Enticed by a post in the Parwich Blog and encouraged by the fact that we had had a busy day and there didn’t seem much prospect of a decent home-cooked meal tonight from the chefs at Orchard Farm we eagerly set off for the Druid this evening to undertake some vital research.
And how glad we are that we did! We were greeted pleasantly but not pushily when we arrived at the bar, where several people were sitting at tables eating, drinking and chatting quietly. We ordered a glass of wine, asked to look at the dinner menu and quickly decided to stay while we chatted to the new(ish) young owners and staff trying to find out a bit more about the current Druid situation.
The new owners took over in January, have a new chef who has scaled down and refined the menu, which they descibe as ‘modern Derbyshire’ (with not a hint of the previous owners favoured black pudding as far as we could see) and is making most of what they serve in house, from tomato ketchup up. Apparently it was his night off tonight but we both had an excellent meal. John had ‘Sheffield’ fish cake and chips which was a new one on us (and possibly not totally ‘Derbyshire’ either…). It was layers of white fish and potato, in a crisp batter and quite delicious; it came with mushy peas and the statutary criss coss arrangement of fat chips. I had herby pancakes with ‘mushrooms in a creamy sauce, spinach and feta’, plus a salad and hot green beans and red onion. I loved every mouthful!
Just coffee and no puds for me but John had some ice cream described as vanilla but rather more interesting than that but neither of us could identify what the flavour was. It tasted home made, but we didn’t check. The whole came to £41 I think including tip and two large glasses of wine, so good value whilst certainly not not cheap.
We asked for some sample menus but they didn’t have any and suggested we looked on the website; the website however appears still to be under construction so we didn’t get very far there! However, we shall certainly recommend it to our guests and any friends that ask, and let’s hope the current owners make a go of it (there were only six of us in the dining room…). We are only too aware that owners come and go and repuations go up and down, so we’d be very grateful to be kept up to date and would welcome all comments (please!).
Douglas’s Barn is available to book for short breaks 3 or 4 nights between 2 and 20 May 2016. Bookings usually start on a Monday or a Friday but if you want a break that starts on a different day get in touch. We are very flexible with bookings.
There are some new attractions added to the list of treats available with the Premier Cottages special privileges card. Amongst them are Renishaw Hall, Thornbridge Hall Gardens (new discounts), Hassop Station Cafe, Village Green Cafe Eyam, Carsington Water Sports and Leisure, Hartington Cheese Shop.
There are still a few free dates at the end of March/April in both Tom’s and Douglas’s Barns. Short breaks, 3 or 4 nights, which are not normally available are on offer. Please look at availability and give me a call or book on line.