Fox and Hounds
This traditional English pub is family and dog friendly with top notch food and some of the best pizzas you'll find outside of Italy.
THE LOWDOWN / LOCATION
Tucked away down Bishopsgate Road in the well-to-do village of Englefield Green in northern Surrey, you’ll find the Fox and Hounds. It’s a gorgeous old pub – one of the oldest in the area – dating back to 1870 and has reams of character. It’s in a great location, Great Windsor Park is at the end of the road and there’s a real feeling of being away from the hustle and bustle.
This is a traditional pub with fresh neutral styling – it’s more country-style than olde worlde with scrubbed timber tables and elegant upholstered chairs. The pubs polo connection is reflected in the photographs and artwork dotted around the walls.
It’s a fairly big pub, with lots of different eating areas each with a distinctive yet friendly and unpretentious feel. There’s a bar area at the front with various nooks and alcoves including the cute little Fox Room, plus window seating, and armchairs. Dogs are welcome here. The bar area leads through to an elegant dining room, which feels a little more formal than the bar area but certainly not stiff and starchy. There’s a private dining room off here – The Bishopsgate Room.
At the back of the pub there’s a courtyard with a retractable roof – it’s a great place for a private event (catering up to about 60 people), but also a great place to dine on a sunny afternoon. For alfresco dining, there’s also a courtyard garden at the front of the pub where the much loved summer barbecues are held on weekends from noon when the weather is good.
SCOFF & QUAFF
The food here is excellent. There’s a strong focus on seasonal and locally-produced food – much of the meat comes from the nearby Crown Estate in Windsor Great Park. And fresh fish is delivered daily from Cornwall.
A newly installed pizza oven, and a gorgeous pizza dough recipe, has meant the recent addition of pizzas to the menu – and I can confirm they’re excellent.
I took Mama and Papa Muddy on their recent visit from Australia. The combination of traditional English pub, excellent food and great location made it a pretty ideal choice. We were in the middle of a heatwave so it felt more like we were in northern Spain than northern Surrey – but it only added to our holiday vibe.
I went for the prawn and avocado cocktail to start, my mum chose a grilled nectarine and goats cheese salad from the specials board and my dad went for the soup of the day (butternut squash and parsnip). We also had a homemade garlic pizza bread.
The salads were fresh and full of flavour, and generously sized. If you’re after a light lunch you could easily stop here and feel satisfied. But me? No. They don’t call me piggy for nothing – so headlong I went, straight into a gorgeous vegetarian pizza. Mum went for the Fox and Hounds beer battered fish and chips – being a big fan of English fish and chips – and my dad chose the Mediterranean minted lamb which came served with roasted vegetable couscous and harissa aubergine. Three very happy – and full – customers.
Pudding? Oh go on then! New York cheesecake for me and a trio of ice-cream for my dad. The perfect way to round off a lovely family lunch.
As you would expect from a quality gastropub, there’s a good selection of craft beers and a decent selection of quality gins. There’s also a good wine list.
Yep. Kids are welcome here. There’s a dedicated children’s menu, and smaller portions are also offered on some of the things on the main menu.
OUT & ABOUT
The pub is a short distance from Windsor Great Park offering horse riding, cycling and walking as well as boating on the River Thames. There’s plenty in the area for sporty types including golf at several clubs including the the prestigious Wentworth Club. Ascot Racecourse is also nearby, and for the family Legoland, Windsor Castle, Virginia Water Lake, Savill Gardens and the historic Runnymede are all close.
THE MUDDY VERDICT
Good for: I can’t think of anyone who wouldn’t like this pub: Sunday lunchers, midweek lunchers, girly get-togethers, family gatherings, business lunches, and romantic date nights.
Not for: Those after a super posh dining experience.
The damage: Starters £6-£9, mains £10-£20, steaks £27-£59 for the 32oz cote de boeuf, pizza £10-£14, desserts £5-£10.
The Fox and Hound Restaurant and Bar, Bishopsgate Road, Englefield Green, Egham, Surrey TW20 0XU. Tel: 01784 433098. thefoxandhoundsrestaurant.com