The Stirling Arms in James Street Guildford is one of four pubs in walking distance of our place, each offering something a little different from the others. Currently undergoing a major renovation it is still operating as building is underway, with the bar and pool table all pushed into the dining room – the courtyard is still open and a pleasant place to sit when the sun is out.
The bottle shop is the first cab off the rank as far as the rebuild goes and it is about finished, with the addition of a drive through coffee stop adding to what it offers, while the main bar and lounge are still to be completed – and accommodation upstairs will also be part of the completed pub.
Anyway we went along a week or so ago and with the weather somewhat inclement sat in the dining room and ordered a couple of dishes off the menu – it is basically old style pub food – pies, burgers, fish and chips and the like, done pretty well and good value for the generosity of the serves.
A Beef and Guinness pie came in a pie dish with the puff pastry crust sitting across the top – a small green salad and chips completed the deal – the beef was tender and succulent and well-seasoned, the pastry buttery and crumbly.
Fish and chips was a pretty big serve, again with chips and salad – the batter was crisp and not at all greasy, the fish inside a little overcooked for mine, but enjoyable nonetheless.
A bottle of Dance with the Devil Cabernet Sauvignon from Devil’s Lair in Margaret River proved a fine companion – aromatic mulberries and blackcurrants, with a touch of Margaret River mintiness on the nose, while the medium bodied palate was full of juicy, ripe plum flavours.
We are looking forward to the completion of the renovations and to see what changes are being wrought on the old place, and we will be getting along to check it out when all is done.