Our search for high quality pub food is taking us to King William in Bath. In the latest Good Food Guide, King William is described as a local gem that serves seasonal, robust modern British cooking – let’s see how bright this gem can shine!
The beers on tap look suitably interesting. Rock tries the Funky Monkey – a fruity English pale ale with hints of citrus from the Milk St Brewery of Frome. I’m in the mood for something dark and the Plotline dry stout fits the bill perfectly. Brewed by Kettlesmith in Bradford-on-Avon it successfully manages to combine chocolate and fruit flavours but it is not as full-bodied as I normally like in a stout.
Knowing that she has the appetite of a small child, Rock asks for two dishes from the children’s menu. The first is a version of the King William tasting board. Chicken popcorn, croquette of Bath chaps, spiced beef brisket, juniper cured salmon, basil pesto and Bertinet bread.
I have the spiced beef brisket with red cabbage jam and shallot. The beef is beautiful and the rich red cabbage jam brings the whole dish alive. Time for another beer and I move on to pub’s own King William ale – not sure who brews this for them but it is a good malty bitter.
Rock’s next dish is battered fish with crushed peas and chips. It is a suitably modest portion but the best things often come in small packages. The fish is fresh, perfectly cooked and wrapped in a crisp batter. The crushed peas and the chips are of the highest quality! Although a staple dish on many pub menus, most pubs deliver a very average fish and chips – but here it is fantastic. I have the pan roasted hake with crushed turnips and Bromham carrots. Another perfectly cooked fish with firm flaky white flesh and crispy skin.
Finally, we share a cinnamon and pumpkin creme diplomat with golden syrup ice cream and candied pecan nuts. The diplomat is very creamy, the ice cream is not too sweet and the whole dessert is enhanced by the textures of the biscuit and the pecans. Excellent.
We’ve had fabulous food and great, friendly and helpful service. The pub has not been too busy, which is a shame because this really is a local gem… some of the people of Bath and some of the visitors to Bath are clearly missing out!