Saturday, 23 June 2012

Horndon on the Hill

Before we talk about Horndon on the Hill I thought I'd give Grahams on the Green a little mention.  Writtle's number one restaurant with views of the green and well populated duck pond.  I've visited this restaurant on numerous occasions and enjoyed every visit including this Friday's lunchtime excursion.  However, the restaurant is beginning to show signs that it is now in need of a little tender loving care from the management.  The front of house team do a great job, always very welcoming and entertaining which is somewhat lacking in many British restaurants today. I don't know how you've done it but customer communication and care is top notch at GOG!

In these frugal times we decided upon the new Special Lunch Menu at £9.95 per person which includes a main course and your choice of beverage.  The menu selection is fairly extensive providing a good choice.  After much deliberating we finally went for the following dishes Classic Hand Cut Suffolk Ham, free range eggs and homemade chunky chips; Pie of the Day - Steak and Kidney and House Salad with poached Salmon!

The Suffolk ham was soft, succulent and delicious, free range eggs perfectly fried and enoromous chips were just perfect.

Steak and Kidney Pie was a delight, soft kidneys were a joy none of that rubber like texture!
Eton Mess
Eton Mess, a seasonal must, includes crunchy meringue, fluffy cream and delicious berries was just too tempting by far to pass by!  Desserts are £3.50 each and they don't mind if you share. Overall, a great venue, great food and brilliant friendly service.

Okay lets go to Horndon on the Hill, situated in Thurock, just off the A13 which sounds about as delightful as a petrol station on the M1. Well, you'll be amazed at how attractive and charming this little village is with commanding views of Sheerness on a really good day and the odd petroleum station in the distance. You just wouldn't believe that you're in the beating heart of industrial Essex.  The village is mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086 as Horninduna and also the possible location for an Anglo-Saxon mint.  The church sits atop the hill, dedicated to St Peter and St Paul, consecrated in 130AD, is reputed to be the last resting place of Anne Boleyn, whose ghost is said to haunt the area. 

The Woolmarket is the historical jewel in the crown for Horndon which was erected in 1525 by the Shaa family.  Today the centre of the village is closed to traffic and turned over to a varied selection of food and craft stalls to help celebrate the feast day of St. Peter and St. Paul.  Staffordshire bull terriers are very popular in this part of the world with many a proud owner parading their favourite pooch up and down the high street.  Fancy some ferret racing, old car gazing or perhaps some bee training?  The food side of the fayre is not up to the likes of France but there are some great stalls selling chocolate, fudge and cream teas to name just a few.  There are also some very interesting craft stalls that demonstrate true crafting skills, including Marquetry that might take your interest.

Overall the event provides an entertaining walk for everybody whether you're out for a pint or a chance to catch up with some old friends!

Well worth a visit - Saturday 23rd June and Sunday 24th June, open from 10am to 5pm.

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