The Dragon, Willington


I’m officially on the countdown to our wedding!

Thursday marked our “-1st Wedding Anniversary” – that’s a thing, you know? – so we took ourselves out for dinner to celebrate the occasion.

We’re lucky to have a number of amazing pubs and restaurants in our area, despite living in a tiny little village, and although we’re regulars at The Dragon, we haven’t eaten there since their menu changed.

Inside, the fire was roaring, which was a very welcome sight compared to the November drizzle that was outside.

There are two parts to the pub; the bar area is very casual; with sofas, cushions, twinkling candles lighting the tables, you feel as though you’re in the comfort of your own living room.

The restaurant is different; our table was an early booking but as the night continued, it soon became bustling with people which oozes a real atmosphere of romance, chatter and friendship.

We sat down to order drinks; I opted for a Sauvignon Blanc with a dash of lemonade (‘drivers wine’), and Mr. W ordered a ‘Clod Hopper’ ale, which is brewed by the pub’s own micro-brewery in the next village along.

I read the menu as if it were a raunchy novel; each dish sounding a little naughtier than the next, with me making “oohs” and “aahs” at every single thing on the menu.

It’s rare to find a menu with not one single thing I don’t want to eat.

In the end, I opted for the wild mushroom ravioli.

Drenched in a delicious nutmeg and parmesan cream and covered in toasted pine nuts and sautéed spinach.

It was the ideal starter; I kind of wish I had some bread to mop up the cream, but then I definitely wouldn’t have had room for what was to follow.

Robert chose Moroccan spiced lamb balls.

Perfectly spiced meatballs on a bed of fluffy chick pea & lemon cous cous, served with harissa & mint yoghurt. Deeeeelicious!

The main dish is what I was most excited for.

Delicately pink lamb chops served with a delightful display of dauphinoise potato, wilted spinach, roasted shallots and wild mushrooms.

Drizzled with flavoursome red wine jus and sweet potato puree, it made for the absolute ideal Winter Warmer and it left my belly with a gorgeous fuzzy feeling of content.

Mr. W opted for the sticky barbeque pork ribs

Coated in the Dragon’s signature barbeque marinade and served with a corn on the cob, sweet potato fries and house salad, with sweetcorn and jalapeno relish on the side.

Rob didn’t finish his; I was desperate to lick my plate.

Our server – whose name I forgot to take but was so wonderful for the evening – asked if we’d like to see the dessert menu.

Usually the first to say, “oh, no thank you, I’m so full”, I almost snapped off his hand as soon as he mentioned salted caramel and almond ice cream.

I was presented with a gorgeous little platter which included soft and fluffy caramel mousse drizzled with chocolate, almond praline & almond ice cream, along with salted caramel chocolate chip cookies and a little jar of salted caramel sauce.

We decided to go back into the bar area to finish our drinks, surrounded by the laughter and chatter of the people around us.

I could have stayed all day, happily sipping on wine and getting caught up in conversations, but with a serious food-baby, I was ready for a lay down! I have absolutely no doubt that we’ll be back soon though; there were far too many things on that menu that I simply have to try!

If you find yourself in the area, then please book a table. Even if you’re not in the area, you can book yourself into one of their B&B rooms and make a trip of it; it’s highly recommended!

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