You know those lovely evenings out that happen by accident, when you have nothing planned and the sun is shining? Well we were lucky enough to experience exactly that at The Railway pub in Cheltenham a few weeks ago.
Picture a really hot Tuesday and as usual James was doing some DIY on the house (just casually single handedly laying a patio this time) and I was trying to stay comfortable and cool in the heat whilst doing a little gardening at 37 weeks pregnant. We decided late afternoon we had done enough and needed a rest so I suggested a drink in a beer garden somewhere would be nice.
Off we toddled just over the road to The Railway, a pub which fairly recently has changed its food menu from sausages to Thai and I had on my list to try one day. We took Jack the dog as he likes The Railway, there are dog rugs to lie on, a nice shady beer garden and treats at the bar. We settled down for our one drink mid afternoon to enjoy the relaxed atmosphere while playing a few board games which are also in abundance near the bar. Now I understand that board games are not to everyone’s taste but it is safe to say that we are fans of a board game night and a pub with a good selection of games always goes immediately up in my estimations!
One drink turned into three and I noticed when I went back to the bar they started serving food at 6pm…so I did the deadly thing of asking for a menu “just to have a look”.
I had heard very good reviews about the food and everything on the menu sounded delicious, we decided that we have nothing in the house to eat that we fancied and why not make a night of it and eat out. So without further ado I ordered pretty much the whole menu and we sat in the early evening sun and stuffed our faces with the tastiest food I have had in ages.
The food is served tapas style and comes out when it is ready, with the idea being you can share plates and savour every dish at its best. The food is smoked and BBQ’d over applewood and oak which gives another level of flavour and as the dishes arrived, served with a smile they all tasted fabulous. We had smoked chicken satay with peanut dipping sauce, sweetcorn bean fritters, Koisoi BBQ chicken northern styled yellow curry with Thai picked lettuce, hiosin aromatic duck pancakes, roti bread and spicy prawn crackers.
The chicken curry was a revelation and tasted not to dissimilar to a massaman curry which I think is one of the tastiest things on earth and if I ever had to choose my food heaven it would certainly be up there…..that or a proper beef roast dinner depending on what mood I am in.
We snuck some of the last bits of duck to Jack and left feeling stuffed full and happy.
I cannot recommend The Railway enough, not only for the amazing food which has been well reviewed by many local food bloggers but for the atmosphere. It is one of those rare local gems which is comfy, cosy and unpretentious but totally delivers on good beer, service and food quality. A top place to choose for one of those rare nights out with no plans that end up being the nights to remember for a long time.