Dinner At The Fox & Goose, Wigley
Now you all know I love all types of food, but I am rather partial to Fish, especially as the Boy Wonder isn’t that keen so we don’t have it very often in the nest. Therefore when I heard about “Fish Special Week“ at The Fox and Goose I was hopping about with excitement and just had to go and sample their goodies.
The pub itself has a very traditional feel to it, which we love, with exposed ceiling beams and a log burning stove in the bar area. Diners are welcome in this area, but the Man and I went into the Orangery as it was a beautiful evening and the view is just to die for. Honestly, you can see for miles around and even down the valley into the bright lights of Chesterfield. Again, the Orangery has a homely feel to it even though it is very open and airy, with wood floors, decor in shades of cream beige and brown and the most amazing crystal chandelier.
I was sorely tempted to have the Mussels in cream for my starter, but because I was having fish for my main I didn’t want to go completely overboard so I opted for the Baked Blue Cheese Custard. He, unsurprisingly, went for the Ham Hock Terrine. Both starters were served on Slate platters which I know bugs some of the more traditional diners (i.e. my Daddy Bird), but I really liked them.
My chilled custard had a fabulously rich, creamy taste to it with that delicious Blue Cheese twang just coming through nicely. Slices of Pickled Pear added crunch and zing to the dish, and the Walnut Bread was a great partner taste -wise when spread with the custard.
The terrine was beautifully seasoned and chock full of pressed meat that had a great chunky texture to it that really filled the beak when bitten into and the accompanying Ham hock bon bons were equally scrummy. What I really liked though were the Crackling curls - they gave a most gratifying attention grabbing crunch when eaten - and The Boy even tried one!
After a short interlude our lovely server brought out the main courses. I had eventually gone for the Monkfish with Charred Leeks, Chorizo crust, Fennel Croquettes and Brown Shrimp veloute, though I very nearly chose the Hake fillet, and the Cod Burger that was taken to a nearby table also tempted me - it was HUGE. His nibs decided on the Derbyshire beef burger topped with Cheddar cheese and Bacon with hand cut chips and Onion rings.
My Monkfish was a chunk and a half to say the least, and was succulent, juicy and firm - as you know I hate over cooked, dry fish. The Chorizo crust was gorgeous, not overpowering, and I thoroughly enjoyed every morsel. Buttery Leeks that had a hint of crunch left to them and a delicate Fennel croquette finished off the dish perfectly. I was a very happy little birdie indeed with my selection.
The Man Birds burger was massive; even he looked at it in amazement and remarked that he didn’t know if he’d be able to finish it. Anyhow, he tucked in with much gusto to what he described as a thick, tasty, meaty beast of a burger and said it was delicious. The cheese had melted on top and was gloriously gooey in the mouth, and the Onion rings were very crispy - just as we like them. As you would expect, the chips too were yummy, not greasy at all and the potato variety used had a great taste to it. Half way through the Boy had to have a little breather in order to finish his main course, which probably gives you an idea of just how generous a portion it was.
For our pudding selection we went for Orange Posset with Poached Rhubarb, Strawberry and Cream Ice Cream and Pink Peppercorn Shortbread (from the specials board) and Rhubarb and Custard Trifle.
The Trifle was imaginatively presented in a Martini glass and it showed off the delicate blush colour of the Rhubarb jelly to great advantage. My favourite thing about trifle is that giggle inducing “sluuuuurp” you get when you first dig in to it, and this beauty certainly didn’t disappoint. Little things like this just remind me of my childhood and happy family afternoon teas. Anyhow, the jelly had a superb crisp rhubarb taste to it and was topped with delicious creamy custard and a generous layer of whipped cream, with poached rhubarb slices on top for decoration. Having not had Trifle for a long time it was a real change and I loved it. Revive Trifle I say, make it trendy again! Now there’s an idea for a campaign......
The Man Bird was tucking into his Posset with enthusiasm and said it had a lovely delicate fresh flavour to it and was very light and fluffy. Combined with the Strawberry ice cream he said it was like a little carnival of taste was happening in his beak. The shortbread biscuits were lovely and light and crumbly with just a hint of peppercorn so as not to overwhelm the other flavours.
As is our usual custom we sat and finished off our meals with a coffee and reflected on our experience at the Fox and Goose. Throughout the evening our servers had all been very smart, friendly and efficient and gave a very positive impression of the establishment. There had been a mix of couples, groups and families (some with babies) eating too, and there was a birthday party in the function room so clearly the team here are equipped to deal with all requirements. We really enjoyed our time here and can recommend you pay a visit, there is a great “normal “ menu if you don’t make it for Fish week, and they also have a calendar of events throughout the year - just check out their web page for details. “Hot Wings“ to the Fox and Goose, well done guys :)