Monday, 12 November 2012

The Stable, Weymouth

Pizzas, pies, cider; with a  strapline like that  it stands to reason that The Stable would be pretty high up on my list of places to eat in Weymouth. And, not only was it down the road from where we staying, but it had also been highly recommended by friends who raved about the roast lamb pizza - perfect for a really lazy Sunday lunch - and selection of potent brews.  If that wasn't nearly enough, where possible, all their food and drink is locally sourced from the West Country.

Needless to say there had to be at least one spanner in the works; this time it was the Ewing who, at a Halloween party the night before, had decided to drink rather too many turbo snakebites  (comprised of a lethal mixture of cassis and Strongbow), before passing out in a pile of chips. 

Needless to say she was feeling rather less than dandy the next morning, But, after the clocks going back gave her an extra hour in bed and a slap up breakfast got her back on her feet, she bravely agreed to accompany me to the Stable for lunch. Even if it meant sticking firmly to the lime and soda.

The Stable is located down on Weymouth's, very pretty, Custom House Quay; neatly tucked away next to the Harbourmaster's house. After finding their concealed doorway, we made our way up what felt like infinite flights of stairs to find a large open plan room, complete  with whitewashed brick walls, rows of bench style communal seating and lovely views out over the water.

A flight of The West Country's finest libations. These are, rather helpfully, named to give you some chance of recalling what you've been drinking by the time you reach the end - tasting notes are also available on the chalk boards around the the room. Cider is great (although the Thatcher's Pear still failed to convince me of the merits of perry), I especially enjoyed the refreshing  Lyme Bay Sparkling and the oaky Cheddar Valley.

As well as the cider there's even apples in their puds, in the form of crumble with clotted cream. If you're brave you can even sample a sweet pizza, topped with hazelnuts, mascarpone and Nutella.

But before we could think about dessert, we had our mains to consider - I forwent the lamb for the  special 'Monster Munch' pizza; a combo comprising of huge chunks of Bath Pig chorizo, roasted pumpkin, peppers and Dorset Blue Vinney. Although the flavours were big and bold they worked together nicely, the sweet veg complementing the salty, spicy meat and cheese. The base was very fine; thin, lightly charred and crispy, and the toppings were generous.

The bacon sarnie I had recently eaten for breakfast compromised even my ability to eat everything that is put in front of me. But, after seeing my half finished pie, the waitress very sweetly checked if was everything  was ok, before offering to box up the leftovers for later.

The Ewing plumped for The Joe Gundry: J'ackson’s of Newton Abbot smoked mackerel, smoked salmon, marinated spinach, & mozzarella, topped with fresh parsley & lemon'. Fish on a pizza is a pretty divisive subject, especially when it also comes with a tomato sauce and cheese. And while it may not to everyone's taste, the Ewing adores smoked fish and, even with a first rate hangover, she was looking forward to this. I wish I could give you an insight into how it tasted, but if you snooze, you lose and the Ewing made quite sure I didn't get a look in. 

The beauty of a place that specialises in one or two things is that they can invest all their time and energy into getting those things absolutely right. The downside is that it always seems far more disappointing when they're don't. Luckily, in the case of the Stable, it seems all that practice has made perfect. Good, simple food and a great selection of drinks -including a range of cider aperitifs and cider brandy, if you're up to it - make this a lovely lunch spot.

And, I can also attest to the healing properties of a cold slice of pizza, the perfect cure for a scrumpy-induced hangover the morning after.

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