Hearty meal on a dark night

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It was a wild, stormy and very dark night when we gingerly crawled our way along the miles of narrow country lanes.

Huge puddles and deep ditches just inches away from the snaking roads were nearly enough to make me forego dinner and turn back.

But I am very glad I persevered as the food at the Plough At Eaves was both hearty and delicious.

This country pub, which at the time seemed like it was in the middle of nowhere, but is actually quite close to Barton and Woodplumpton, is one of the most characterful in the Fylde.

And it feels like it’s been here so long it’s become part of the ancient landscape. Reputed to be the oldest pub on the Fylde, it exudes an authentic rustic charm found in only a handful of pubs in the area.

It was early on a Tuesday night when we went and there were only a few locals about - both round the bar and in a games room in the back.

We took our place in the corner of a dimly lit side room, curiously decorated with portraits of leaders from the English Civil War while waited for our drinks to arrive.

We forwent starters and went straight to the main course.

It’s easy to forget about the specials board - but not here as a four-foot high blackboard was plonked down in front of our hungry faces.

Off it I chose the fillet of beef stroganoff with rice and chips (£12.95) while my elder daughter went for the steak and kidney pudding with chips, mushy peas and gravy (£9.95).

The food was simple and hearty but there was a real quality about it.

There was a generous amount of meat in the stroganoff and it tasted like steak.

The steak and kidney pudding was also a hit - that rich and comforting taste was perfect on such a bleak night.

My wife, as is her custom, ordered a medium steak. In this case it was an 8 oz ribeye for £14.95.

It was tender and suitably steak-like to justify the extra expense.

Some steak sauce would have been appreciated and we had to make do with ketchup and mustard.

Off the children’s menu my younger daughter went for a margherita pizza and chips for £4.95. It went down nicely but it was perhaps a little unimaginative and doughy.

The bill with four soft drinks came to £48.

The Plough At Eaves may be out of the way but it is worth the journey.

Gazette rating: 7.5 out of 10