MARY and I always enjoyed eating out and over the years we found numerous places in Essex and further afield where a good meal could be had. On average we used to eat out twice a week and each venue we visited has been given a Moth rating of between five and one according to quality of food, value, service and surroundings. We never really came across any "one" ratings!

Top of our list of favourite places to dine

The John Barleycorn, Threshers Bush, Nr Magdalen Laver, Harlow

Yet another great find . . . Have had several lovely Sunday lunches. . . a must visit place!

The White Hart, Little Waltham

Two for one fish dinners on a Tuesday . . . the plates were overflowing!

The Fox and Goose, out on the A414 towards Ongar

All refurbished, excellent meals. Celebrated my 80th Birthday there in June 2016.

The Square and Compasses, Fuller Street

Excellent food . . . Must try the meat pie!!

The Spotted Dog, near Barnston

Fantastic food served in excellent surroundings . . . well worth a visit. Special set menus on certain days. Had our Christmas Dinner there in 2014.

The Channels Golf Club, Little Waltham

Ideal for that Sunday lunch or special occasion. Bar meals also available.

The Angel and Harp, Great Dunmow

Part of the same group ast The White Hart at Little Walham. Food just as good . . . Tuesdays is 2 for 1 pie day!

The Ship, Tiptree

Yet another latest find . . . do a great lunch . . . steak pie and veg is my favourite and all at a reasonable price with special rates for the oldies!!

These venues are also worth a visit

The Chequers, Wickham Bishops

Had a great Steak and Guinness Pie there with eight vegetables.

The Anchor, Danbury

A very comprehensive menu with their "sizzlers" being a speciality.

The Six Bells, Boreham

The 4-moth rating is given for lunchtime meals only as not  eaten there in the evening for quite some time.

The Old Ram (on Norwich Road north of Diss)

First-class meals served here and they also do great breakfasts so if you are on your way to Norwich one morning you should call in. Accommodation is also available.

The William Boosey, Hatfield Peverel

First-class menu . . . do a lovely fish and chips!!

The Unico Italian Restaurant, Epping

We celebrated Mary-2's 30th birthday here in January 2005 and found it excellent with a good choice on the menu and a really great atmosphere.

The Clockhouse Restaurant, Epping

Simon and Mary treated us to a very nice meal here to celebrate my 69th birthday. Yet another restaurant in Epping that is well worth a visit.

We also regularly visited other chain restaurants

Vintage Inns Restaurants

Fowlers Farm, Braintree; Fox and Raven, Springfield; The Angel, Broomfield; The Running Mare, Galleywood; The Seal, Woodbridge; The Crown, Ardleigh; The Kings Head, North Weald.

Open all day and serving excellent good value meals off of a standard menu so you know what to expect whichever venue you visit.

Beefeater Restaurants

The Albert, Colchester The Oyster Reach, Ipswich.

These restaurants offer a  good standard of food at a reasonable price and are now only located where there is a Premier Inn. Do a good value meal deal if you stay at a Premier Inn.

Miller and Carter Restaurants

To be found at Epping, Harlow, Chelmsford and Lakeside.

These restaurants took over from some of the Beefeaters and are of an excellent standard with a reasonably priced meal for the early diner.

Other venues we have visited from time to time

Carvery Restaurants

The New Times, Tiptree; The Old Ferry Boat Inn (near St Ives, Cambridge; The Artichoke, Brentwood; The Toby Jug, Runwell; White Hart, Stanway; Chelmer Tavern, Chelmsford; and a recently opened one in Braintree.

All very similar in presentation with choice of meats and plenty of vegetables (especially as you help yourself!)

Country Pubs

The Green Man, Howe Street: The Three Elms, Chignal St. James; The Pig and Whistle, Chignal Smealey; The Fox, Mashbury; The Mitre, Wickham Bishops; The Woolpack, Fryerning; The Three Horseshoes, Bannister Green; The Castle, Great Leighs; The Cock, Little Maplestead.; The Hurdlemakers Arms, Woodham Mortimer.

We enjoyed some good meals at all the above but cannot comment on the current standards on offer as they have not been visited on a regular basis.

Enjoy Fish and Chips? Then try these places

The Cafe on the beach at Dunwich, Suffolk Coast

Again great fresh fish and chips in a basic beach cafe setting right on the beach with plenty of places to walk it off afterwards. Ideal if you are having a day out on the Suffolk Coastline.

Baileys Fish Restaurant, Southend-on-Sea

Another good place for fish and chips . . . on the front at Southend just past the Kursaal going towards Shoebury. Eat in or take away.  I think it is still there!!!

The Upper Deck, High Street, Aldeburgh, Suffolk Coast

Great eat in fish and chips here. Same company as the one further up the street where you buy the take-away meals.

The Green Dragon, Notley

Saved the best till last. Just up the old main road from Great Leighs this pub does take-away fish and chips and it is really lovely! Freshly cooked from order . . . Yum, yum!!!!







Eating Out

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