UPDATE: This pub has reopened under new ownership.
North Norfolk is one of my very favourite places to eat. Its seafood, fish, meat, fruits and vegetables are always fresh to the plate. In my search for new places to indulge in some local food and drink, I came across an interesting article written by James Ramsden for The Guardian, which addresses why we return to our favourite restaurants time and again (read “Why we never get fed up of our favourite restaurants”). The Anchor Inn in Morston was recommended by Sarah Pettegree of Bray’s Cottage. Now Sarah lives in Norfolk and makes the best pork pies on the planet… so I took her word for it and promptly booked a table for 2 at The Anchor Inn.
The result? A delicious lunch in a very charming country pub which, by the way, was a one time haven for 19th century smugglers and fishermen!
“We pride ourselves on serving classic pub dishes and innovative cooking in a non pretentious way, using as much locally-sourced produce as possible, meaning our menu varies from day to day. From the freshest possible seafood caught literally minutes from the pub, to fantastic local fruit and vegetables and fine rare breed meats, we’re dedicated to bringing you the best of Norfolk.” (Official Website)
The Anchor Inn has undergone a complete refurbishment since it was taken over by the new owners (Harry Farrow and Rowan Glennie) in June 2011. The pub is quite spacious but it is divided into smaller, cosy areas. The bar area has a lovely fireplace and we were seated at a table by the roaring fire.
There is a varied selection of ales from Norfolk and Suffolk as well as a well-balanced wine list.
Paulo had an Adnams Southwold Mosaic Pale Ale (single hop beer) which he really enjoyed. I wasn’t drinking, so it was Coke and water for me.
The daily menu was printed on a large placemat and there was also a specials board… so lots to choose from!
Paulo really enjoyed his starter, which was potted brown shrimp presented in three round slices… an innovative way to serve them. They came with pickled cucumber, salad leaves and toasted sourdough bread.
We both couldn’t resist the fish and chips as our main course. The haddock was super fresh (and massive!) and the Winter’s Golden beer batter was light and crispy. Served with a piquant and chunky homemade tartare sauce, the haddock practically melted in my mouth. The triple cooked chips were perfect, as was the pea puree with its vibrant, fresh flavour.
We enjoyed the ambience and friendly service so much, we decided to linger a little longer. Paulo ordered dessert… a generous pot of vanilla crème brûlée, served with honeycomb ice cream. Tiny bits of honeycomb scattered over the wooden board made for a lovely presentation and an unexpected treat for me, as I nibbled away at the sweet, crunchy chunks.
The Anchor Inn is a dog-friendly pub so you can rest assured that your beloved pooch is well looked after. Look at this cute bowl of doggie treats by the entrance!
The Anchor Inn definitely merits many return visits. I can see why it is a firm favourite. It’s become one of mine… I just wished I lived a bit closer so I could drop in every day for a drink or a yummy bite to eat!
The owners, managers or staff did not invite me to visit this establishment and were unaware that my experience would be the basis of a written review. It is based on my experience at my own cost and I did not receive compensation for my review.
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