The Roebuck Inn at Mobberley, Cheshire

“Im not sure its possible to get more ‘country pub’ than this. Mobberley in Cheshire seems to have ‘rustic’ and ‘quintessentially english’ completely wrapped up!’

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The Flame and I used up a days holiday just before Christmas. A little scoot round Knutsford for last minute presents saw us heading out a couple of miles to The Roebuck Inn in Mobberley for a lazy lunch. It has been restored to an astonishing level of glory by the Cheshire Cat Pubs and Bars. Apparently they have done the same to several others including its super neighbour The Bulls Head (reviewed here) and the A49’s The Cholmondeley Arms (reviewed here). You could say they are a sort of Alan Titchmarsh of pubs, transforming weedy patches of backyard into lush, vibrant plumage!

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The Roebuck is a small hotel too. One can presume the rooms are pretty smart as the pub itself is a riot of homely comforts, red leather sofas, hanging plants, eclectic tables and chairs, log fires and a wonderful bar decanting local ales and fine wines. It even boasts a stunning mock ‘twitchers’ lair that leads on to a beautiful terraced garden.

We took a wonderful old table by the window and ordered up a local pint of ‘Buck’ bitter. Super stuff. We pondered the lunchtime menu. I suspect the plan is to get you to share? Sharing plates do feature as well as small plates, middle plates, main plates and sides. Theres quite a mix in terms of cuisine. Head chef Lloyd is Italian and so the sunnier European areas feature. If any help is needed in choosing, the artistic blackboard gives you all the pointers you need.

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I wanted to start with Toulouse sausage cassoulet, but as the sausages were off I went for the French onion soup with gruyere croute (£5.95). After the initial disappointment I was soon back up to speed, the soup was delicious, sweet caramelised onion in a rich broth with melted cheese dripping all round. Glorious. The Flame had (at my request!) the warm crab and kalamata olive cakes with red pepper mayonnaise (£6.95). They also, were rather splendid. The taste of crab there in abundance.

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We then had the Roebuck sharing board (£14.95) featuring fennel salami, Toulouse sausage (replaced with a copper pan of pulled pork), duck liver and wild mushroom parfait, home cured ham served with coronations, sundried tomatoes, olives and crusty bread. This was all quality stuff. I also had an unusual dish of slow cooked curried lamb shank, rice, Dahl and coriander yoghurt (£16.95). As you would expect the lamb fell off the bone. Bucking my usual mantra to not have curry in a pub, it wasn’t quite spicy enough for me, but most rewarding all the same.

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I then had probably the best tarte au citron (£5.50) I can remember. Homemade, as are all the desserts by Lloyd and his team, it was simply historic. It had the right ‘wobble’ and the right lemony tartness. matched with a blob of creme fraiche it was a complete must have.

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With it’s sister The Bulls Head over the road it too features the idea of nipping for a brisk Cheshire country walk either before or after a sumptuous snack. A route map is provided. The meal for two came in at £54. Decent value for fresh, local produce cooked with style. It’s gone pretty close to the top of our list…….we’ll try the brunch on a sunday next.

The Roebuck Inn,
Mill Lane,
Mobberley,
Knutsford,
Cheshire,
WA16 7HX
Telephone 01565 873939
www.roebuckinnmobberley.co.uk

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