Every time we went to visit Grandma in the later years, and certainly since I moved abroad, she would like to treat us to a nice lunch out. There was only one or two places that would pass muster, and Jacoby’s was one of them. With that in mind, there was really only one place that we could have had dinner in our last visit to Ware.
Mum and I had been planning this restaurant stop since we decided to drive up the night before the wedding. As the beautiful Hanbury Manor was fully booked and we had to stay at the horrible Premier Inn, we decided that we should at least have a nice dinner – and not at the Beefeater horror attached to the hotel. As such, I had been looking at the menu for weeks. When I took poorly a month or so before my trip, one of the things that upset me the most was that I may not be able to have dinner there. Turns out that determination is a great healer and although I couldn’t eat every bite, I could give it a really good shot!!
To start with Mum and I shared the brie in bredcrumbs with sweet chilli dipping sauce. It was served on mixed leaves but that was just a waste of tummy space in my mind.
It was incredible. The breadcrumbs were perfectly proportioned and cooked – they were light and crispy, while the brie inside was warm (not scalding thankfully) and gooey. The chilli sauce was a great balance of sweet and spicy. It was an incredible dish!
Next up for me was the slow roasted pork belly with mashed potato, honey roasted roots and cider jus.
This was really average, sadly. The pork had great flavour but because it was the belly and it hadn’t been cooked particularly expertly, it was revoltingly fatty. There was also no crunch or even bite to the skin so that was just rubbery and disgusting. Also, the honey roasted root vegetables weren’t. They were plain and not even particularly well cooked. The mashed potatoes tasted instant and had a bit of a wall paper paste texture. The only redeeming thing aside from the flavour of the pork when you had cut around the excessive amounts of fat, was the cider jus. That was utterly delicious.
I couldn’t eat much and I didn’t have the energy for a discussion, so I didn’t tell the wait staff when they took my plate. In fairness, given that there was a good 75% of the food left on the plate, they didn’t ask either. Latterly, when the bill came I did mention the fat issue with the pork and the staff member rambled on with words that they didn’t quite understand how, not realising that I am somewhat of a pork belly connoisseur. Not only can I eat it like a pro, I can cook it that way too! I gave up trying to explain, nodded and smiled until they went away again.
Mum had MUCH better luck with her main course of home cooked ham, duck egg and triple cooked chips.
It was utterly delicious! I can say that from a personal opinion because she was kind enough to let me have a try! The ham was very flavourful, the egg was warm and runny, and the chips were soft and fluffy on the inside yet crunchy and crisp on the outside. It was a total winner, and was big enough to share too. Really very good menu choice!!
Next up was dessert, and I had to leave Mum to it. I had eaten more than I had in days and didn’t want to push myself any further. Also, much as I am a bit of a chocoholic, I randomly don’t have a hugely sweet tooth for puddings. I would rather have a larger starter and main course.
Mum’s choice, which won’t come as a surprise to anyone who knows her, was the raspberry crème brûlée.
Apparently it was very nice indeed! I trust her opinion on this because she pretty much has crème brûlée every time it is an option, so she is a connoisseur in this field!!
Despite my hugely disappointing main course, I would go back to Jacoby’s if I found myself in Ware again. I would also recommend it to anyone who happened to randomly find themselves in Ware too. Not that I think that is likely, but maybe someone who is Googling “Best Restaurants in Ware” will see this and give it a try. Just maybe avoid the pork belly!!