Midge Hall, Leyland

Alma Stewart-Burgess took a walk into the unknown with this week's restaurant review - and the sun was shining.

On a lovely, spring lunchtime whilst driving along in the sun, not quite knowing where I was going, I came across the Midge Hall pub in Leyland.

The reason I stopped here was because of the dazzling array of flowers adorning the front of the building.

Judging by the number of cars in the ample car park, the signs looked good that this would be a decent place to eat.

I believe this is the first time the Guardian has reviewed the establishment, so I hoped it would be a positive experience.

When I entered the pub, all the tables were just about full of diners, the majority of whom were over 50.

The decor was traditional: patterned carpet, pink velour built-in seating around the walls and a pink ceiling.

After perusing the menu for a few minutes, I went to order my feast at the bar and was warmly greeted by the waitress who was very friendly and even offered to come and sit with me as I was on my own!

I didn't really have the time or the appetite for a starter although among the 10 very traditional starter/light bite choices were favourites such as prawn cocktail, haggis and baby black pudding.

Having noticed a children's climbing frame around the back of the pub, there was also a small box of toys and books to keep little ones amused.

I noted the six choices for children: burger, chicken teddies, fish fingers, sausage, scampi and gammon and egg.

If I had my children with me, I would have probably have also considered something from the 'special' or 'cold' sandwiches section or even one of the baked potato options.

I ordered the aptly named 'Chicken Midge Hall' which according to the description is 'diced chicken breast sauted with onions and mushrooms in a rich cream sherry and cheese sauce'.

I spent last week being put through my paces at Leyland's newest gym FX Leisure so I had to think long and hard about what I wanted it served with.

In the end I opted to have it with chipped potatoes and vegetables. (Note to self: Contact the gym).

I hoped it would be worth 8.65. I also ordered a Coke which was 1.10.

Within a few minutes, a waitress had cleared away glasses from the last diners and wiped down my table.

It didn't seem very long either before my meal arrived. The chicken was served in a separate dish on the plate.

The chips looked good but the chopped carrots and green beans were a little dull.

The food was piping hot and I dived into the chicken which had large chunks of the breast within the generous amount of sauce and there were lots of freshly cooked mushrooms.

The chicken was a little dry for my taste, despite the sauce.

The chips were fine but unfortunatley, the vegetables were a little disappointing.

All in all, the menu has great potential. There is plenty to choose from and there's the option to order an accompanying sauce such as Dijon, tarragon and dill.

I would certainly return to Midge Hall to enjoy a very friendly welcome - although I'm not sure they can guarantee the sun will make another appearance!


Name: Midge Hall

Address: Midge Hall Lane, Leyland.

Tel: 01772 422466

Opening hours: Open for food Monday-Thursday 11.30am-2pm; 5pm-9pm. Friday, Saturday, Sunday: 11.30am-9pm

What's special: Outside space with a children's climbing equipment. Country location with a charming array of flowers in hanging baskets and pots. Ample parking.

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