Not a review on a particular meal but some scribbles about one of my fairly regular fun dinner haunts over the years.
Situated on the A34, south of Congleton, Pecks offers a single sitting (the place used to have the broader name of Peck’s Dinner at Eight). Food on offer is a five course table d’hote menu for £29.95 during the week – soup, starter, main, dessert and coffee & petits fours. Reflecting the popularity of the place, this rises to £38.95 on Friday and Saturday – but you get an additional two courses – “appetiser” and cheese.
And this is where it gets wacky. Wacky in way I’ve never come across before. Wacky in way that can be so theatrical as to have you giggling. Even a miserable so-and- so like me.
Your order will be taken for soup only. That will arrive (unless, of course, it’s an “appetiser” night). You eat. Your plate is taken away.
Then, when everyone’s plate has been cleared, a sample of each starter is paraded round all the tables. One server carrying one plate and it is explained to each tabel. A server then returns to take your order and, in very quick time, it arrives.
The process is repeated for mains. And for desserts. Desserts take a long time – Peck’s has lots of desserts. Pecks has so many desserts that, by the time they’ve finished, you can’t remember the first one – so you say to your dining partner “what was that pear and mango thingy”.
Told you it was wacky. And theatrical. And fun.
But this isn’t mass catering. Perhaps around 100 covers. And they get the cooking right. And the ingredients – the current month’s menu features a starter of Whitby smoked haddock and mains of Goosnargh duck and Charolais beef.
It’s a bit of a schlep for us (luckily the driving isn’t a problem as I don’t drink these days) – and the seven course affairs are a long evening – but worth the trip a couple of times a year.