Review: The Sun Inn, Chobham
The best known antidote to wintery weather is a boozy night out in a cosy pub. And we know just the place – The Sun Inn in Chobham.
Tis true that here on Muddy we go a little weak at the knees for a good pub in a pretty village surrounded by cracking walks. And The Sun Inn, in Chobham, ticks all three boxes. We visited just before lockdown.
It’s in the charming old-worldy village of Chobham between Woking and Sunningdale where you’ll find a lovely collection independent boutiques, gift and interiors stores, jewellers, restaurants and cafés. Chobham Common is nearby offering up a plenty of walking opportunities.
The Sun Inn is a Grade II-listed pub that underwent a major spruce up a couple of years back, which saw the addition of a new dining room. The result is a pub that offers the best of both worlds: a smart dining room and an old pub that is full of character, with lots of nooks and crannies and gorgeously warming open fires for cold winter day or eve. And for the sunnier weather, there’s outdoor seating at the front, as well as a courtyard at the back.
My most recent visit was a blustery Thursday evening – just before lockdown – and despite the weather, it was busy and bustling. There’s a small carpark to the front and side of the pub, but if it’s full up, as it was on the evening I went, there’s a car park just off the High Street about 5 minutes walk away.
SCOFF & QUAFF
Food wise, it’s a combination of French classics and British pub favourites: slow-cooked Boeuf Bourguignon with creamy mash, beef and ale pie, Moroccan lamb tagine and rope-grown mussels.
There’s a seasonal a la carte menu, a good-value monthly-changing set menu at £12.95 for two courses, and a bar menu offering up moreish nibbles.
My husband and I started with a drink first in the older part of the pub – an ale for him from the extensive list and a glass of sauv blanc for me. We were in a lovely nook, not far from a roaring log fire and it was lovely way to start our evening.
But the lure of food soon too hold and we moved to our reserved table in the dining room. I was in the mood for Moroccan and went for the Moroccan mezze platter for one to start followed by the Moroccan lamb tagine for mains. And both really hit the spot. If you’re not feeling hungry the platter could easily be a light lunch or dinner for one. It also comes as a sharing platter for two. The lamb was lovely, tender and falling off the bone, in a tasty sauce which was mopped up nicely by the couscous.
My husband followed a fish theme – starting with the potted Cornish crab with guacamole and moving on to the Malabar fish curry for his main dish. He demolished both, which pretty much says it all.
We honestly thought that we couldn’t squeeze in another morsel but then our lovely waitress mentioned the caramel soufflé on tonight’s specials board and it was sayonara to any self-control. My husband predictably chose the chocolate indulgence – a chocolate and orange mousse with chocolate ice cream and a chocolate almond crumb.
While the soufflé looks huge – it’s actually so light and fluffy it’s almost like eating air. At least that’s what I’m telling myself. It was the perfect way to round off the dinner. The chocolate indulgence was deliciously rich and indulgent according my husband, and probably far too sweet for me.
The menu caters for children, with a dedicated menu for the little ones, and for older children or those with a smaller appetite there’s a half price, half portion on selected items on the main menu.
OUT & ABOUT
Chobham Common, just to the north of the village, is the largest National Nature Reserve in the south-east, where more than 300 species of wild flower grow and 100 different bird species live a lovely protected life – and there are plenty of walking options here.
Closer to the pub, the pretty Church of St Lawrence sits proudly in the middle of the village – a bit of a relic, it dates back to 1090.
THE MUDDY VERDICT
Good for: Ladies who lunch, couples, families (there are baby change facilities), groups of friends, Sunday lunchers, walkers, including those with dogs.
Not for: The food is firmly in the gastropub sphere, so if you’re after something more high-end, this is probably not your place.
The damage: Mid range. Starters are around the £7-£8 mark; mains were £12.95 for the cauliflower steak up to £24.90 for the 8oz filet steak. A two-course set menu is £19.95, add £3.50 for three courses.
The Sun Inn, High Street, Chobham GU24 8AF. Tel: 01276 859 190.