Sunday, 4 October 2009

What a Birthday celebration......

What a Birthday celebration and in fact what a great few days we've had altogether really..... after trade dying off quite suddenly around Tuesday / Wednesday - come Thursday, pow - back to being really, really busy, amazing!

Anyway - back to the beginning.........Thursday was just incredible. As usual with these sorts of things the evening started off fairly quiet and I did the usual 'no one's coming' routine.......but of course they did, and not only did our friends turn up so did a complete restaurant (and then some) full of customers. I don't know if it was the balloons or the general party atmosphere - but we never expected to be as busy as we were. Of course we had launched our new winter menu that day as well so that had a bit more impact as well I think. Here are a couple of photo's of the Victoria Inn and some of our lovely friends helping us celebrate the 1 year event in style! Here's to the second year..........

Now then, although we eat quite often from our menu, this Friday, SOH and I became 'customers' to test out not only the new menu, but also young Damian who is training up to be able to cook for when James our Head Chef is off. He also who wants to become a fully fledged Chef - so we are supporting him with training and much more importantly the experience and confidence that this will then bring to him. Also, doing this 'secret' tasting, mean's that we get exactly what the paying customers should be receiving - not any thing extra or different because we're 'the boss'........ plus, it gives us the opportunity to sit and listen in to the comments of other diners!

We swore the waiting staff to secrecy and had the order put through the till just like any other customer order........... Scallops simply pan fried in a light Garlic dressing to start - wow, cooked to perfection! Scallops can go a bit rubbery if you overcook - but these were fantastic, and bursting with flavour. Next, Devilled Kidneys for SOH and Marinated Steak for me............ oh YUMMY is all I can say - constructively - the sauce on the steak could have been a fraction hotter, and the sauce with the kidneys a fraction less - but overall a fantastic 9 /10 - and my steak cooked EXACTLY as I like it! Pud for me only - but I chose our new Lemon Syllabub with crushed Amaretti biscuits.........oh my goodness! It was sublime..........just delicious.!!
We were SOOOOO proud of young Damian - and it wasn't as though we were quiet - we had almost 70 covers for his first night! he handled it like an old timer - took it all in his stride (including the critique!) and since then did another similar service Saturday night and an even busier Sunday lunchtime today...... I think he'll go far!
So yes, the new menu has been well received - my idea of a classical British Pub menu is going down very well - the slow roasted half shoulders of Lamb are selling probably the best and the marinated Rib Eye Steak a close second, with the home made Steak and Kidney puds not far behind - and with nothing more expensive than £15.95 - I think great value for money as well.
What else..........??? Well, our lovely area manager Jim paid us a visit on Thursday to talk about some planned maintenance and improvements to the Victoria that we shall hopefully be starting in January - I promise to talk a bit more about that in the next post. We've had various contractors coming in to give us quotes for pieces of work - so that's been quite interesting, and then it will be sifting through for not only the cost but workmanship as well.
We both realised today that since we lost our Beth we hardly go out any more - at least with her we had the excuse for a walk - so today while the sun was still shining we sat down by the lifeboat and had ice creams and generally watched the world in Salcombe harbour drift by for a little while - and very pleasant it was as well (although SOH has the cold I had!). There's no doubt about it Salcombe is best in this season, and the customers are mostly older or young with families and really just delightful! Now it's a little quieter as well, you can give a much better level of personalised customer service, and I don't mind being in the bar all day every day when it's like this....
For now though - I have to go and watch one of two shows I just can't miss - X Factor......... who gets through to the final 12 and who doesn't!! I think I can already predict the winner.....!
Have a great week my lovely friends - I'll post again next weekend.... X


Jennifer said...

Happy Birthday to the Victoria Inn from sunny California! What a fabulous year you have had and so very well deserved! We toast you all to many more!

Jenny and Colin.

Sam and Ella said...

We had a great evening. Love the new menu especially the scallops