7 April 2014

& other places: The Old Drum, Banh Mi Bay & Bill's

The Old Drum
A 16th century pub in the heart of leafy Petersfield, we ended up here after a hungover trip down to Southampton to scope out furniture for D's new place. We hadn't seen the good write-ups but were instead drawn to it like a beacon and a source of a much-needed Bloody Mary. Carefully refurbed and complete with a pub dog, there's a lot to look out for. I went for the homecured gravadlax with the crunchiest, sweetest homemade pickles as an accompaniment, while D went for the pease pottage and ham hock which he couldn't get enough of (even if it isn't quite my idea of tasty). The steaks were perfectly cooked and served with triple-fried beef dripping chips and an inspired, chorizo and pancetta stuffed beef tomato. Dessert was in the form of sticky toffee pudding and deconstructed lemon meringue pie - all scraped up and declared good. Book in advance and they'll serve you a roast to carve at your table, or if you're after something light, they also do a great selection of English tapas.

Banh Mi Bay 
Sometimes after spending a morning moving office from Soho to Gray's Inn Road (sob), you need a good something to keep you going. Just round the corner from our new place is Banh Mi Bay, a very popular little Vietnamese cafe. As the name suggests, they do a roaring trade in Vietnamese banh mi (baguettes) and the queue for take-out was out the door. We each ordered a different one (I went for the chargrilled prawn), added sriracha to taste and wolfed it down in no time. You'll also find the usual rice boxes, summer rolls and bun noodles here if you're after something a little more substantial - and I was hugely relieved to see that they serve pho to go. Perfect for those fragile days at work that we really shouldn't talk about.

Bill's
Bloggers' favourite, Bill's, recently opened its doors in Chichester, half an hour or so away from my parents. Continuing an ongoing dad and daughter day theme (we try and meet for lunch once a month or so), we dropped into Bill's having heard good things about their burgers. Ever one with eyes bigger than her stomach, I started with the honey and mustard Cumberland sausages - sticky and sweet and, frankly, probably enough for me. Dad and I both ordered the burger and stuffed it full of bacon and cheese. No messiness here, this is one firmly held together sandwich and the patty was admirably big. Skinny fries and horseradish mayo added a little something something, but we couldn't resist a plate of hot cross buns with cinnamon butter (Dad) and a lemon meringue cheesecake which I, predictably, failed to finish. With friendly service and a nice little thing going on, I can totally see why it's taking towns by storm. A one-stop shop whatever you fancy; nice.
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