Eatery review: Ratcher’s Tavern, Glenridding (Cumbria, UK)

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Name: Ratcher’s Tavern Bar
Location: Glenridding, Ullswater, Cumbria, UK
Website: Glenridding Hotel
Stars: 4 (****)

As regular readers will be aware, this weekend I visited the Lake District in North Western England. In my caravan park in (if you can say “in”; it’s very spread out) the village of Watermillock on the shore of Ullswater. After a day out “rambling”, that is to say walking along the bank throwing stones into the the lake, taking photographs and talking with the family, I felt peckish, so instead of going back we decided to eat out at some pub or café. As we were in Glenridding at the time, it made sense to look there rather than jump back in the car and drive to somewhere else. Glenridding is remote, but it is full of tourists and food selling outlets. After considering two others nearby by walking around and around comparing menu prices, family friendliness and so on, decided on the Ratcher’s Tavern, operated by Best Western and a part of the attached Glenridding Hotel.

After whiling away half an hour during which I spotted a humorous road sign: 20130409-091856 PM.jpg, which obviously I’ve recreated here as I didn’t think to take a picture at the time. It’s supposed to say Public, by the way. But anyhow, after doing that it was six o’clock which is when the A-board outside the car park had said food starts to be served. We entered. Decidedly pubby feel. Sky Sports 2 playing on overlarge ‘TV’ which turned out to be a projection on to the wall. Lots of men. Pool games. Bar with alcoholic beverages on-tap. None of these things are too bad individually, but a mixed combination of the lot is pushing tolerance boundaries when it comes to family dining places. Fortunately, spotted eating area with a good view out of the windows into the beer garden – typical – and a river running right next to us into the lake, also visible if you stand up.

Service was reasonable, with the food arriving not too long after one has ordered. Waitresses not very talkative, but can’t mark them down on that. Nice enough tasting with plenty of chips, which is usual for a restaurant, I tend to find. The prices for every meal option on the menu aside from the salads were in double figures, but as I wasn’t paying I didn’t complain. Ketchup is served as a condiment along with the salt and pepper, which is probably not unique but rare in eateries. The problem is that it ain’t in the squeezy bottles; they’re in glass ones so had to hammer on the bottom and dig it out with a knife and so on, but got there in the end.

Parted with no trouble except the cold weather which isn’t their fault, so I give four stars out of five overall. Two for value, three for atmosphere, four for service and five for food.

Please look out for my next eatery review!

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