I left you last week in a state of suspense – will I ever do another roast review?
Next weekend I am in London so unlikely to be able to produce a review, and this weekend gone I was in the beautiful city of Hull – City of Culture 2017. I assume the cultured among you will be visiting?
But I didn’t want you to think that I was leaving you. I might one day but my work is unfinished. Especially now I even have Get Reading following the blog.
I got back into Reading around 9pm on Sunday night – still stuffed after my mother’s roast dinner (I reckon a 7.4 before you ask) so there was no way I was going to be able to have a roast dinner anywhere. And how was I going to get a Sunday Roast on a Monday?
There was only one solution.
Yes for £7.49 on a Sunday, and just £4.29 Monday to Saturday (except of course on bank holidays, grrrr) – and an extra £1.50 to GO LARGE, there was The World Turned Upside Down. How could I resist?
It isn’t in the most salubrious area. I can avoid making a snotty comment about the clientele as there were not enough clientele to pass remark upon. The ambience was one of near-silence. Perhaps they need some dub techno to set the mood? Possibly the most tenuous way to promote my DJing.
We waited for a short period until the chef appeared, who was very friendly and up for some banter. The gammon looked freshly cooked but the other meats looked dry – as if they had been under heat lamps for several hours. Which of course they had. You could also have pie instead of meat for the roast. Or a half-chicken though it was closer to a third by time the heat lamps had shrivelled them up.
The vegetable selection wasn’t exactly inspiring – peas, carrots, cauliflower ‘cheese’, sweetcorn – they also had chips. Chips???! Though I admit that I have on occasion had chips on self-made roast dinners when I had had too bad a hangover to make roast potatoes.
I chose only the cauliflower ‘cheese’ – two of the vegetables on offer are FOFs (the second word is “off”, I will leave you to work out the rest) and I didn’t fancy plain old carrots. My accomplice did assure me that the carrots did not taste of arse. The cauliflower cheese was ok, quite on the soft side and a hint of creaminess to pass the Trading Standards Cauliflower Cheese test.
As I could have as many roast potatoes as I wanted, I had 8, maybe 9. There were one or two crispy sides mixed in, but generally a rubbery lukewarm feel to them. Vaguely acceptable.
Having the special golden large ticket, I was granted a sausage. The sausages had clearly been cooked some hours ago, but it was edible and porkish. Something close to a Walls sausage.
The special golden large ticket (it was actually just a white receipt and the same size as a normal sized dinner receipt but my accomplice works in marketing and it seems to be rubbing off on me) also granted a large Yorkshire pudding instead of unlimited small Yorkshire puddings. As the large one needed to be made fresh, I chose that option. Crispy sides and a delightfully soggy base, it really wasn’t too bad at all. Far from award-winning but acceptable.
I cannot really pass too much comment upon the stuffing. It was a slightly different colour and taste to what I expected, and a touch on the stale side. But at least it was attempted – I wish more places would do so. Granted I accept most places are going for a higher class of customer (or “better” class of customer as Get Reading managed to suggest those shopping at the Oracle are compared to those shopping at Primark…ouch) and stuffing balls may not be part of the staple diet in Henley.
Just to clarify, I am working class. At least when I’m in Henley. In Hull I am upper-middle class.
Onto the meat and I chose gammon, which I normally don’t go for. However it looked freshly cooked unlike the other meats and it tasted gammony, a touch salty with a wide brim of fat, but it was quite enjoyable.
The other meats looked awful – beef, lamb and turkey but I noticed a fresh turkey had been brought out and placed near the vegetables – however Adolf’s chirpy and banterous nature did not cheer him up enough to allow me the fresh meat so I just plumped for the turkey.
Did you get it?! Plumped…turkey…
Frankly it was some of the worst meat I have reviewed so far. Cold, dry, stale. It was your step-auntie’s turkey from Christmas Day – at the New Year’s Eve party that you really didn’t want to go to.
So onto the gravy. The most complimentary thing to say was at least it wasn’t jus. Is it complimentary or complementary? I’m normally pretty good with my spelling despite going to school in Hull. It was quite thin but generally acceptable. Unlike my schooling.
I did not have high expectations for this. I think it beat my low expectations. Had it been freshly cooked then the score would have been a little higher.
It was better than the Toby Carvery – the meat had taste to it for a start.
I’m going to give it a slightly controversial 4.4 out of 10.
Next weekend I am partying in London on the Saturday night and with the first train home being the Waterloo stopping service at 7am, I doubt I will be able to move, let alone eat come Sunday afternoon. But you never know.
By the way, if you are looking for a Christmas present for your soon-to-be ex-wife/husband, look no further then the below great offer.
Can you imagine the joy on their face?