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A bit about the chain Wetherspoons is a chain of pubs all around the UK there are hundreds of them. Each one is different they range from small, traditional pubs to large, modern, contemporary buildings, airport bars and even hotels.
I have never stayed in any of their hotel pubs but for future reference I just looked up The Briar Rose in Birmingham (I'm going there in a few weeks and havent booked a place yet) A family double for 2 adults and one child is coming up at £39 for the Thursday night ant £55 for the Friday night. It sounds and looks lovely but they always do on the websites so I can't comment. If we do choose to stay here I shall update as and when.
They are well known for low cost food and drink and you can find one in large towns and cities. I have visited the Victoria train station bar in London, the Gatwick airport bar, Liverpool airport, York Punch Bowl, York Postern Gate, Castleford Winter Seam, Manchester The Paramount and Leeds Beckett Bank. There are probably more that I can't remember. Each one that I have visited has looked different both inside and out but the standard of food and drink remains the same. It is pub grub, it's not fine dining have no doubt about it but it is tasty, filling and best of all cheap.
The Menu The menu is much the same in each of the Wetherspoons pubs, the menu has got much bigger in recent months, here is some of what they have to offer:
Breakfast - Full english, breakfast roll, pancakes and porridge. I only ever got scrambled egg on toast, thankfully it wasnt that awful scrambled egg you get with a skin on the top and water running out of it. It was about as ok as scrambled eggs get.
Starters - Nachos, sandwiches, salad, soup and fishcakes. I've tried the nachos which were tasty but I'm not too much into starters. My friends and I got a sharing platter before which was just what we wanted and surprisingly large. We just fancied something to nibble on whilst having a few pints there was wedges and chicken wings, onion rings, chips, chicken strips, wedges and mushrooms. Probably a couple of other things but it was a while ago. We all enjoyed it and it came with a couple of dips.
Mains - Gammon, egg and chips (not over adventurous but very nice), Carbonara with garlic bread (had lots of times beats many italian restaurants only beaten by frankie and benny's), scampi, chilli con carne, steak and chips, fish and chips (bigger portion than expected very nice), roast dinners, lasagne (standard lasagne), burgers and baked potatoes. There is much more it's quite an extensive menu these days. I was there a couple of weeks ago I got steak and kidney pudding which was on the small side but had a good bit of meat in it and was very nice, my friend had sweet chilli noodles (vegetarian) and really enjoyed them but again it was a bit on the small side.
Desserts - cheesecake, ice cream, fudge cake and apple pie or crumble with a choice of ice cream or custard.
There is also a childrens menu which also has quite a big variety on it in comparison to a lot of places there are pastas, roasts and chip dishes.
My friend is a vegetarian and used to avoid eating in pubs and tended to go to more restaurants due to the lack of vegetarian options but she was impressed with the range last time we went.
The menu is informative on what is suitable for vegetarians and vegans, it also contains calorie information and allergy advice.
Wetherspoons also do special offers and food nights. They were having tasting nights the week after we went last but unfortunately we didn't make it. On Tuesdays they have steak nights, Thursday is curry night and Sunday has to be roast day!
The portions aren't huge but they are not so small that you'd still be hungry or want to complain about them. The price is good you'd get a nice meal for 5 or 6 pounds. The burger and chips with a pint is only 4.95. I went with my mother and aunt and we got 3 meals a dessert and 2 bottles of wine for just over 20 pounds.
Another thing I liked was the prices were the same in the airport and rail station branches where often other hike them up.
They have a wide selection of drinks, lots of lager and ale choices, a good few wines and champagnes and they also do pitchers and glasses of cocktails. This summer a pitcher of pimms is only 5.99. Most pints are around £2.
Overall wetherspoons is good for everybody whether you just want something to eat, just want a drink or both. It is a family friendly pub too it would be good for the whole families early on although some of them get a bit rowdy if there's any big football matches on and the later the evening gets.
The only problem I ever had was at the Postern Gate Wetherspoons in York. The place is very large and has a big outdoor beer garden but it was quite busy when we went and we ended up sitting on high stools eating our dinner in between two tables of hen parties. The table was also near a door which wouldn't close on it's own so the food went cold and we just got sick of leaving the table to get up and close it. In a Wetherspoons this size there is no reason not to have a designated dining area up until a certain time, it was only 6pm. Also, they brought my peas and gravy out a good 7 or 8 minutes after the meal. On this occasion the place was extremely busy so I wouldn't let me put it off in the future.
If you haven't yet been to a Wetherspoons, find your nearest one and give it a bash with the peace of mind of knowing that even if it's not 10/10 it's not going to break the bank!