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REVIEW The Strutt Arms, Milford, Derbyshire

By Molly Scott – 18th October, 2020
arancini and halloumi at The Strutt Arms
What I loved about The Strutt Arms:

Having known this pub either be mediocre and old fashioned or lying derelict for almost a decade, it is wonderful to see The Strutt Arms back open under new owners, and back on form as a desirable gastro pub. The decor is impressive – it’s been stylishly and confidently refurbished. The food was great and the service friendly and attentive, yet unobtrusive.

Let’s get the C stuff out the way – The Strutt Arms were taking the all the safety measures seriously. Masks were insisted upon, the NHS track and trace system was being used, there was plenty of hand sanitiser and a clear one way system. I felt entirely safe throughout my visit – but also relaxed and comfortable.

 

Worth paying a babysitter?

Absolutely! The Strutt Arms would be the perfect destination for date night or a catch up with the girls. You could of course take the bambinos, there’s a children’s menu, plenty of high chairs and it’s all on one level so easy access for buggies etc. Most importantly the staff were lovely – which ultimately is what I think truly makes anywhere family friendly. But rest assured it’s refined enough for a civilised childfree rendezvous!

 

Expect:

Excellent gastro pub fare in stylish, relaxed surroundings. Attentive, friendly service.

 

Value for money: 10 out of 10

The lunch menu offers exceptional value at two courses for £12.50 (or three for £15.95). Check out their website or socials for full details of various offers – including half prize pizza night, a great steak offer and pie night!

The details:

I used to live in Belper, just round the corner from The Strutt Arms. In my time in the area, it was a very nondescript pub which then spent several years empty. It had always puzzled me, that somewhere in such a prime location (slap bang on the A6 about half way between Derby and Matlock, next to the river in a World Heritage site and with it’s own car park) wasn’t wildly successful.

Thankfully, the current owners have lovingly refurbished the beautiful old building in a bright, contemporary style whilst retaining the original features such as the lovely stained windows. We marvelled over the tiled floor and the designer wallpaper. It really is a wonderful space.

Coincidentally, my visit to The Strutt Arms ended up being the day before my own local area was redefined as tier 2. As such, this would my last meal out (at least inside!) with anyone not in my household for Lord knows how long. The last hurrah!

We perused the menu over a very pleasant glass of Sauvignon Blanc. I ordered the crispy halloumi with sesame seeds, sweet chilli sauce and a few salad leaves. It was utterly delicious! The generous portion size would lend itself well to sharing if you were so inclined. My friend ordered the ricotta arancini but we were both tempted by several other choices including the baked Camembert.

I really enjoyed my main of five spiced pork belly with potato dauphinoise and pak Choi. The meat melted in the mouth and the five spice complimented rather than overpowered. The accompanying pak choi had been lightly sautéed with mustard seed which were delicious but made me cough (and it is NOT the time to be coughing in public, is it ladies?!). My friend had the burger – described on the menu as ‘fully loaded’, it was exactly that – complete with a fried egg and topped with a hash brown! Perfectly complimented with chips and creamy kale slaw.

Purely in the interests of reporting back to you lovely lot, I forced myself (a blatant lie – I’d had my beady eye on it the whole time) to order the sticky toffee pudding. Beautifully executed and adorned in edible flowers, it was another generous, delicious portion. Next time I’ll be leaving ample room for the dessert trio (miniature portions of double chocolate mousse, chocolate and orange tartlet and a white chocolate and raspberry mousse).

We finished with a lovely coffee, served with a miniature biscotti and the warm glow of having been well fed whilst we set the world to rights for a couple of hours. It is meals like this that I will yearn for until I am allowed back out (with anyone other than my own family). And I will definitely return to The Strutt Arms. I sincerely hope it can weather the current storm. It’s an asset to the local area and deserves to be incredibly successful.

 

For more information visit: https://www.struttarms.co.uk/

Enjoy!

 

Molly x

REVIEW:

This is a Girl About review. I was invited by the management to dine at their restaurant free of charge in exchange for an honest and frank review. All my opinions are my own and in no way have they been swayed by their kind invite. Girl About reviews are always 100% honest. We only publish reviews that, for the most part, are positive.

Molly Scott Derbyshire
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