After a boozy evening at Peace & Loaf, it was Sunday and we dragged our hungover selves out of bed to get some fresh air in the marvelous countryside that surrounds Newcastle.
Vallum Farm is a great place for getting away from the city with tea rooms, outdoor activities and a fresh food shop along with David Kennedy’s restaurant.
Arriving quite late on a Sunday, around 3.30pm, we breathed a sigh of relief when we found that not only were there spare seats, but the Sunday roast menu was still being served.
Although I’m a huge fan of tea and love experimenting with different flavours, there is nothing better than a good ol’ traditional English breakfast tea after a heavy night.
Since we were later than most diners, there wasn’t any more roast beef which was disappointing, and from the meat options available, there was only chicken or pork. Leaning towards the fattier meat, we all ordered the pork loin roast which arrived served with yorkshire pudding, tarragon carrots, mashed swede and roasted duck fat potatoes.
The pork was deliciously fatty and was generously portioned with a large chunk soaking up the juicy, gravy. The Yorkshire pudding was also delightful, taking up most of the plate with a good crispy yet soft centre. However, the roast potatoes were the let down of the dish, although crispy on the outside, were dry in the middle. I also would have liked to have a gravy boat for the table, as there wasn’t enough for my personal taste.
Considering the price tag of the set Sunday lunch menu at £13.50 for two courses or £15.50 for 3, it was one of the better roast dinners I’ve had. Especially in comparison to The Flask in Hampstead which was vastly overpriced.
For dessert, my friend ordered a slightly different dessert than the rest of us, lemon posset with raspberries. The dish was sharp, citrusy and deliciously creamy but a little too much for my sore head.
Instead I opted for the more heart-warming, traditional dessert of sticky toffee pudding with salt butter caramel. Just looking back at the pudding makes my mouth water as the sponge cake was moist, light and dripping in sticky toffee sauce. Even after I’d eaten the sponge, I was scooping the rest of the liquid as it was too good to be wasted. If only every dessert could taste this good.
David Williams at the Vallum was a nice surprise and considering we’d left Sunday dinner a little late, was exactly what we needed. The roast dinner wasn’t the worst I’d tried but I’m still looking for the perfect Sunday lunch, however, the atmosphere, service, location and dessert more than made up for the little niggles and overall we had a great hangover lunch.
– David Kennedy at Vallum Farm, Newcastle