When the sun comes out in England everybody dons on their summer wear and heads out in to bask in its rays. Last Sunday was no different, despite it being predicted to rain from 6pm (and boy did it rain) hence the quick race out to somewhere pleasant to enjoy it. We're running out of 'new ' places to explore but having passed Grassington on the way to other Dales delights we decided to take a drive up and explore a little.
Grassington is a small village in the southern part of the dales just slightly North East of Malham. It's often used as base for walkers and you'll find numerous B&Bs and eating establishments in the main square.
It took is about 30-45 minutes to walk round the entirety of the shops in the centre. We arrived around lunch time, pub grub was mentioned prior to our wanderings and as we walked past a couple of pubs the more pub food became cemented in my mind. With it being a rare sunny summers day we had our hearts set on sitting outside and making the most of it, however after we wandered around the village twice more in the hope of finding a table outside it appeared everyone else had their hearts set on this too. We meandered off to the river hoping to kill some time and avoid the lunch hour rush to be able to return and find somewhere to perch our weary behinds.
On our return we still weren't having much luck in alfresco dining options and so began to think defeat was imminent and so began perusing the inside menus of the local pubs. We wandered in to the Devonshire hotel (pub) and the dark dreariness sent us scuttling out. We walked a little further down the road and looked at the Foresters arms but at £15 per meal per head it seemed a little steep for a lunch time bite to eat. We continued our search and reached the Grassington House, peering over someone's shoulder at the menu board the sandwich offerings seemed appealing and substantial and then as luck would have it the occupiers of the shoulders upped and went! Hallelujah! Our outside dining wish was granted and fiddles to the menu we'd eat whatever it presented.
D went in search of menus and returned with laminated A5 sheets, there wasn't much on there but sandwiches and light bites which was fine for me. We were later informed that a more extensive menu was available inside within the restaurant.
Normally I'd opt for a cold glass of ale but I've made a vow to myself not drink beer until I go on holiday, in a vain attempt to lose a pound or two before we go (it isn't working, the beer has gone but the weight remains). Instead I rather sensibly (possibly) and more lady like (possibly) ordered a glass of diet coke. Served ice cold with lemon it was just as refreshing as that pint would have been, or so I'm telling myself.
Waistline once again firmly in mind I ordered an open sandwich, I'm told less bread is the way forward in weight loss techniques (if that's the case I should probably cut out my morning toast too). The open sandwiches consisted of a couple of seafood options and a cheesy mushroom concoction (which I saw later on the next table and was glad I didn't order it as it appeared to be cheese on toast with mushrooms hidden beneath the greasy orange cheese) and something similar to a Club sandwich. I chose the later, a chicken, bacon, lettuce, Mayo sandwich with a drizzling of basil and mango dressing. (£6.95)
Everything went together well and was one of the better club type sandwiches I've eaten, in addition to this I rather liked the pesto and mango dressing and may seek to make something similar at home. It filled a spot with the accompanying chips D and I shared. The chips were hit and miss with some good crispy ones and some greasy undercooked ones, but I'm just being fussy.
D who evidently is not watching his waistline (and balked at the idea of sharing chips) opted for a closed club sandwich which came with three layers of bread.
Like my own it came with chicken, bacon, lettuce and Mayo but in addition to this had a tomato too. It was a little charred around the edges but he finished the lot in the record timing, probably through prolonged hunger.
The staff at Grassington House were exceptional, although we ate from the bar menu on a picnic bench outside the restaurant that encroached on to the street we were subjected to high class service and not a breath away from what I would have expected inside with it's posh glassware and tablecloths.
I'm glad Grassington House had a free table and we swerved the pub grub. It was much cheaper too at just under £20 for two, whereas the pubs were grossing from £15 per head just for food, and I suspect a nap would have been needed shortly after eating all the grease and gravy.