Prior to setting out for the Roland Arms one lunch time, a colleague of mine became convinced I had made the name of the pub up and it did not, in fact, exist.
Well I’m glad to say it most certainly does exit and I, for one, am delighted about that as I thought it was a thoroughly pleasant place to be.
The Roland Arms can be found off Mansfield Road in Aston and has the appearance of a well established English pub.
A pre-journey trip online to find out a bit about it, revealed that serviced traditional English cuisine.
This was enough to tempt me to make the journey over from Worksop (although to be honest, the words pub lunch are usually enough to tempt me in from anywhere).
On this occasion, I was in need of some R&R after a hectic morning and a trip out to another new place I had not been to before seemed a good way to unwind.
What more incentive did I need?
First impressions were very favourable.
It looked like one of those pubs that had been there a good few years and far from being a quickly-fix inner-city chain pub, this looked like a proper place that had been the cornerstone of its community for some time.
Inside,there was the seemingly traditional fare of dark wood-panelled walls and the red carpet and upholstery that created a warm, welcoming atmosphere.
I found a table in a corner and started to peruse the menu.
This is a pub that likes to do home-cooked food and there were plenty of traditional British pub favourites on there ranging from steak and kidney pie, to gammon steak and rump steak, as well as burgers and fish dishes.
All of them seemed very well priced and there was also a starter menu and a children’s menu too and everything looked to be very good value.
Have been tempted in by the thought of British food, I then went for an Italian meal but choosing lasagne with garlic bread to start with.
The chips I had with the lasagne were British (probably) but the drink was American (you can guess what that was).
The friendly staff offered me the option of having my garlic bread with my main dish as opposed to as a started and I decided this sounded a good idea.
I had wondered about ordered a dessert too but decided to wait until I’d tackled this first challenge before deciding.
It was a good decision. While waiting for my food, a couple nearby were served their fish & chips special and the size of the portions suggested I would be feeling full by the time I left.
And so it proved to be as it was clear the chef had not been told to hold back on the portions when it came to giving you a good feed.
The three decent-sized pieces of garlic bread perfectly complemented the large dish of lasagne which was full of mince and tomato sauce and bursting with flavour.
It looked homemade, it tasted homemade, and it probably was homemade and that made it delicious.
The portion of chips was not huge but that was probably a good thing.
Suitably filled up by the end, my thoughts did briefly turn to a dessert menu that included sticky toffee pudding and a host of other traditional favourites.
But if I’d gone down that route, I’d have spent the afternoon asleep in the office.
Thank you The Roland Arms, that was fine fare indeed.