The Quart Pot – Runwell
This is yet another of those pubs I’ve driven past a thousand times, I actually spent my first three years living just a few hundred yards away in Runwell – in those days there was road sign at the Quart Pot saying ‘beyond this place be
Since moving back to Essex in 1986 I’ve driven past a thousand times.
I have called in on a few occasions, it’s ‘mutually inconvenient’ for meetings with my friend Jeremy and we’ve enjoyed liquid lunches and sundowners in the past. I can only remember eating at ‘The Quart Pot’ once, in its previous ‘Ember Inn’ incarnation, it was not a good experience.
These days it’s a ‘Classic Inn’ – part of the Stonegate Pub Company empire (they also operate Slug & Lettuce and Yates, among other ‘formats’).
So, Saturday lunchtime, and a lunch with Jeremy at a ‘mutually inconvenient’ pub.
The Quart Pot is located about half a mile east of Wickford on the A132, heading towards the A130 and the Thomas Kemble, which I’ve written about recently (here).
The décor is standard ‘Inn’, or at least the modern interpretation of an inn, a mostly flagged or boarded floor, lots of ‘vintage’ prints, but even more promotional signs.
There are a couple of picnic tables out front – for ‘fresh air breaks’ – and about a dozen ‘out back’ in the garden for sunnier days. There are about twenty five tables inside, each accommodating between two and five customers.
There’s a good selection of beers and lagers, and the bar staff are happy to offer tasters. I tried a taster of the Wild Goose IPA and stuck with it through lunch.
There’s a comprehensive menu, starters, steaks, grills, burgers, pasta… there’s a ‘spice night’ each week serving curry (one of the many publicised promotions ), and they were running a ‘pie festival’.
I chose the long beef rib, which was both tasty and tender – a tad undercooked but no matter – with a side of onion rings and an optional upscale to sweet potato fries.
Jeremy went for the ‘Classic Combo’ which comprised Southern-fried chicken breast goujons, chicken wings, wedges, onion rings, nachos, breaded scampi, garlic bread and dips. Jeremy had asked for a side of fries, but the server suggested that the combo would be sufficient and she was correct, the combo beat Jeremy, despite me offering my assistance.
The combo constituents that I tried were okay, if unmemorable.
A couple of beers each and a little change out of fifty quid, so neither cheap nor pricey, but we left with full bellies.
Overall I wouldn’t hurry back to dine, but nor would I avoid it.