What’s the best thing going on a day trip or a day out in the countryside? Let me tell you, it’s the food. I love finding a nice proper British pub to rest my legs and dig into a heartwarming meal. A couple of week’s ago, I did just that. I picked a nice, sunny and crisp Sunday to head to Mirfield for a bit of exploring in the wild, before enjoying a three course meal at The Hare and Hounds pub*.
Exploring in Mirfield
Mirfield is a small village in Yorkshire, on your way to Huddersfield coming from Leeds. I got the train which is less than half an hour ride so driving will be an even shorter route. Aside from Ushiwear being located here, I knew nothing about Mirfield prior to going. It turns out, River Calder runs right through it which I walked along, taking me up to Lady Wood. A really beautiful area with a cute arts trail. I was only meant to walk it in a loop but stumbled onto Hagg Wood nearby so I explored there too.
I could most likely have continued walking in the woods to reach my end destination – The Hare and Hounds – but decided I didn’t want to risk getting lost, so I walked the longer way around. It was worth it and also helped me knowing how to get back to the train station in the dark. The pub is definitely more suitable for drivers but if you (like me) don’t mind walking, it’s worth the walk. Besides, it never hurts to burn off some extra calories to fit more food.
The Hare and Hounds
The Hare and Hounds is part of the Vintage Inn family and just like The New Inn at Scarcroft, it’s your typical rustic country pub. I arrived just before the sun was about to set so I decided to enjoy a refreshing drink in the sunshine in their beer garden to start. I was very warm walking up all the hills so it was the perfect resting spot to cool down and enjoy the gorgeous scenery in peace. I’d definitely come back here in summer time, such a lovely outdoor seating area.
Once cooled down, I headed inside and was seated at a table near the open fire. Ahead of me I could see glimpse of the sun setting outside which made for a really nice view. The pub seems very popular with more or less every table being filled and as soon as someone left, a new party sat down. I don’t blame them, it’s a cosy pub with lovely staff and the food is delicious. With it being Sunday, I obviously went for a roast dinner.
The Hare and Hounds Menu
The Hare and Hounds menu is very similar to other Vintage Inn pubs, with seasonal oddities. There’s plenty of options so anyone can come and enjoy food here. There’s a separate kids menu, vegetarian and vegan options and they have a wide selection of drinks too.
When I visited, I was doing dry January but instead of having a soft drink, I tried their alcohol free gin and tonic option and an alcohol free ale (St Peters Whitout) to go with my main. I can honestly say, I actually preferred this ale over alcoholic ones. I know, shame on me, but perhaps because it wasn’t as filling. The T&E Aromatic Botanicals & Green Fruit Notes is a great alternative if you want to enjoy all the flavours of a gin and tonic but be mindful with alcohol. They even serve it in a goblet with traditional garnish so no one would ever know it’s not a “real” gin and tonic.
Back to the food. I went all out, enjoy a three course meal. It was easy to choose what to have. Ever since I discovered black pudding, if it’s on a menu, I’ll have it! I started with Seared scallops & black pudding, served with minted pea puree and crispy bacon. Great flavours all around and they all complimented eachother really well. If anything, it only left me moreish.
The Hare and Hounds offer five different roasts on a Sunday: beef, lamb, turkey, vegetarian roast and a trio of all meat options. All their roast are served with Yorkshire puddings, smoky beef dripping roast potatoes, thyme-roasted carrots, roasted parsnips, beetroot, butternut squash, broccoli and as much gravy as you like. I decided on the Hand-carved breast of turkey with a pancetta crumb and a lemon and thyme stuffing wrapped in bacon. The waitress asked me if I also wanted some cauliflower cheese to go with it, before I got the chance to request that as an option. I take it it’s a common request and testament to them making a scrumptious cauliflower cheese. An yes, I can confirm they do. Don’t worry guys, I’m not a monster. I had to leave some roast potatoes behind as I couldn’t fit it all. I also wanted to make room for dessert. We might have a second stomach for that but not on this occasion. Their roast dinners are humongous!!
To finish off, I had the Rich banoffee pie – digestive biscuit base topped with toffee fudge, cream and fresh caramelised banana slices. I’d craved banoffee pie a couple of days before so it was a given and it did not disappoint. It had the perfect amount of every ingredient, making it impossible not to polish off the plate. Not to sweet, just the perfect end to a wonderful afternoon and evening.
Have you ever been to a Vintage Inn pub? Would you go to The Hare and Hounds after reading this post? It’s dog friendly so no excuses for not being able to go. I’ll definitely be back!
*The Hare and Hounds in Mirfield kindly invited me to experience their Sunday menu, giving me £50 towards the bill in return for a review. All views, photos and words are as always my own.