“An outstanding roadside destination pub” is how The Inn at Yanleigh describes itself on its Facebook page. It’s a place we’ve driven past many a time and been intrigued by, with its location seemingly in the middle of nowhere on Bridgwater Road.
With guest rooms on-site and offering easy access to both the city centre and Bristol Airport – and with plenty of parking – it’s always seemed like a popular place when we’ve passed. I can’t comment on the overnight accommodation, but we’ve now been for an evening meal and can report back…
It’s an enormous place – plenty of seating downstairs, complete with attractive fireplace, and an upstairs area with seating surrounding the central staircase, a sizeable bar and even an outdoor terrace with views of the A38.
Drinks are ordered at the bar while food orders are taken at a separate order point – and if you’ve got young children, make sure you take some coins if you want to buy them one of the activity packs on sale at the bar, which are cash only.
Food-wise, The Inn at Yanleigh promises “fresh, locally-sourced produce”. As well as their breakfast menu (served from 9-11.30am), there’s a sizeable main menu served from 11.30am right through to 9pm.
The menu’s divided into starters, pub grub classics, dishes from the grill, sandwiches, sides and desserts – and it’s great to see that certain dishes can be ordered either as a small or a large portion depending on appetite.
There’s a kids’ menu, too, with breakfasts, starters, mains and desserts – and while the lists of starters and desserts feature some more exciting choices than normal (like BBQ chicken wings and an Oreo sundae), the choice of mains (sausage and mash, fish/chicken goujons/burger and chips or tomato and mascarpone pasta) was a little uninspiring.
At £5 each, though, the kids’ mains aren’t badly priced – and the four year old was pretty happy with what came out of the kitchen. The shape of the burger suggested that it was homemade, and the patty had plenty of flavour – again, though, I wish that places would ask if kids want anything else on there apart from a dry bun and a patty! The chips were good and chunky, and for this one, baked beans are always a hit.
Having already been out for lunch the same day (see my review of The Lazy Lobster!), the fact that the menu at The Inn at Yanleigh offered smaller portions of certain meals was a bonus! On the other side of the table the small beer battered fish and chips (£9.50) was still a good amount for the money, the fish cooked perfectly, the batter crisp and flavourful, and more of those large, crispy chips. The size of the portion of mushy peas was a little underwhelming, but the rest of the meal was perfect.
When it comes to pub grub I’m a sucker for a lasagne and this one (£8.75 for a small portion) hit the spot. With plenty of beef and tomato, perfectly cooked pasta and a sea of melted cheese on the top, it was a decent pub lasagne – and more than enough for me on a normal night, let alone when it was my second meal out of the day.
It’s an odd place in some ways, The Inn at Yanleigh. It feels like a cross between a family chain pub, an independent and a motel. No complaints from us, though – the food was decent and the service was swift and friendly, with the team behind the bar particularly great with the small child. It’s a clean and tidy pub with a down to earth feel, there’s plenty of parking and it’s easy to get to. I have no doubt that we’ll be back…