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“too many bossy chalk boards”
Review of Parkers Arms

Parkers Arms
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$8 - US$32
Cuisines: British
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine, Child-friendly
Dining options: Dinner, After-hours, Breakfast, Lunch, Delivery, Reservations
Description: A contemporary country inn with its fair share of history, The Parkers Arms is located just outside of Clitheroe in the prettily sleepy village of Newton in Bowland where, so we���re told ���you can hear the grass grow���. The beautifully traditional whitewashed inn, hung with colourful baskets of flowers and lined with parasol shaded outdoor tables, invites guests in with the promise of glorious regional food and a relaxed but sophisticated atmosphere ��� both of which it delivers in spades. The cuisine is rightfully British, with a few global treats of course, based on local and seasonal ingredients cooked using creativity and imagination as well as a little tradition too (and speaking of tradition we absolutely insist you try the fantastic Sunday roast here at The Parkers Arms). Pints of good local ales are joined by delicious wines from all over the globe, so whether you���re resting after a bracing dog walk or celebrating a special occasion, The Parkers Arms has not only the food but the drink to suit too. Indeed, balancing modern and classic style, informal and efficient service and relaxed and special food, The Parkers Arms appears to have created what could quite easily be the perfect local inn.
Reviewed 5 July 2014

we enjoyed a nice couple of drinks in the beer garden in the lovely sunshine at the parkers arms. What was very off putting were the chalk boards around the place telling people it was £8 per person to consume anything not purchased from them in the beer garden. and £5 to park on the car park. fair do's they do serve food but its a bit pricey and if a pub is quiet (which it was very quiet despite the lovely weather) and if you have ordered a round of drinks so were spending money in their pub what's wrong with having a bit of a snack brought from home???? This really made us wonder if the owners want custom or not. Maybe it would be best to just drive passed and pull in somewhere else that welcomes all customers equally.

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6  Thank meenbanad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Parkersarms, Owner at Parkers Arms, responded to this reviewResponded 6 July 2014

We are not a public park and we have to pay very high council tax, gardener's wages, staff wages, electricity, water, rent etc. We cannot afford to maintain our lawns and tables and car park
for you to have a picnic on tables for dining customers. It is most unreasonable to expect that and you were told very nicely and you were allowed to finish your picnic and park your car for the afternoon. Please feel free to drive past and find another pub that is happy to let you picnic on their property during opening hours, we certainly cannot afford it. We are a food pub and we make our living from serving food. It is therefore odd that you wonder if we are looking for custom when it is not custom you were giving us. Enjoying your food in our dining area cannot possibly be construed as "custom" surely. There are plenty of benches in Newton in Bowland you could have used and had it been raining you certainly could not have used the indoor dinning tables to enjoy your "packed lunch" so why do it outside despite the signs.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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251 - 255 of 476 reviews

Reviewed 30 June 2014

I rarely if ever write a TripAdvisor review; it's not because we don't eat out much - in fact we try and get out once during the week as a couple, and at least once at weekends -, it's more that it just never occurs to me to put pen to paper on the subject.

So when my wife suggested that we should contribute a little more often, if nothing else as a post-prandial 'thanks' to the various places we enjoyed (and of course a bit of a 'kick-up-the-backside' to those we didn't) there was only really one place I could start.

We've been eating at the Parkers Arms for about two years now. We've been with family, with friends and by ourselves, at the weekend and during the week, and have experienced the whole kit and caboodle of Stosie's cooking, from simple salads through to the complete Sunday lunch. We've eaten outside - drinking in the magical views up to Waddington Fell -, and we've eaten inside in front of the cosy fire on a cold winters day; we've eaten early when we were the only ones there, and we've eaten during a busy lunch service when we had to wait patiently in line. (We even turned up when they were closed once, for which I have no-one to blame but myself).

So in summary - we're not 'regulars', but I do reckon we know a little bit about the place.

Let's get the criticism in first; sometimes, when they are very busy, they run out of menu items. This of course means that you can't get exactly what you want. And occasionally - say during a very busy lunch service - orders seem to back up in the kitchen. This is course means that you have to wait to be served. Are these issues a problem for us? Categorically not. Are they unique to the Parkers Arms? Again, categorically not.

Quite frankly, I quite like the fact that occasionally they'll have a run on something particularly toothsome and exhaust supplies - I just put it down to my bad luck and hope I can be a little quicker off the mark next time. And as for waiting for my food? Well, anyone who knows me wouldn't be concerned for my health lest I waste away (I'm on the large side), and besides, hunger is the best sauce*, isn't it? Unfortunately, nothing's more likely to make me feel hungry than watching Stosies delicious dishes making their way through the Parkers Arms, which I suppose is a bit of a double-edged sword.

So that's those microscopic nuisances dealt with; on to the review proper.

Last time we went - the middle of May if my memory serves me correctly - I had the black-pudding sausage rolls and the game-pie, both recommended by AJ, and my wife had the Bowland steak salad. And well, I'm pleased to say, it was all absolutely splendid.

The pastry on the sausage rolls was light, flaky and buttery, and the filling unctuous and deeply-flavoured, coating the mouth in a way that only food that's properly good can do. A little pot of crunchy, powerful pungent picallili to cut through the richness of the rolls, and a scattering of well-chosen salad with a light drizzle of oil as a garnish - the perfect starter.

My wife usually adopts a thoroughly disapproving expression when I choose a course like this - sort of a 'you're a grown man, I shouldn't need me to tell you how calorific that is'. But it nearly turned into a cutlery-at-dawn affair once she realised just how good these little babies were. Battle-lines were drawn, hostilities commenced, casualties counted and we called it a draw.

So to the pie. At first glance I wasn't bowled over, a squat little thing, hand-shaped and supplied without seperate gravy....however, don't judge this book by its cover (even when the cover is probably amongst the best pastry I've ever eaten - sturdy and crunchy but nowhere near heavy or dry). The filling was a sensation - so moist that I didn't need nor want any more gravy-frippery, and unbelievably tasty, with a really gamey, herby, swiney flavour that lingered oh-so-long. I read elsewhere that they use mostly game, but add pork to keep things nice and juicy and I'm very pleased that they do, because let's be honest - game can be a bit hit-and-miss sometimes. Superb crunchy triple-cooked chips and a selection of propely-cooked vegetables were a perfect accompaniment.

Yeah, the wife had a salad, bully for her. I'm sure it was great too, but I was far too interested in my pie to care (actually she loved her salad, particularly the excellent steak which was superbly trimmed and cooked, and which gave very little plate-waste).

So the food was great, terrific, superb - what about the service? Well, if you pick up the dictionary and look up convivial, there's a picture of AJ.

He was - as he always is - extremely helpful and courteous, jolly with it, and deeply knowledgeable about the food. On the night we visited, they'd just won the Visit England Silver Award and it was heart-warming to see just how much that clearly meant. Too often we see a lack of passion or commitment 'out front' - well, no-one can say that about AJ!

When the pub's quiet, you can hear him, chuntering away as he is wont to do with regulars and one-time visitors alike, swapping stories and sharing little anecdotes. For us he's part of the charm of a trip to the Parkers.

So there you go; I'm sorry if this all looks a bit sycophantic, but to be honest I don't give a monkeys. We love the food, we love the service and the hospitality. And to be brutally frank, it's not expensive either - you can pay for more for far less in the Valley.

Our only other problem with the Parkers Arms? Well, only that we don't live in Newton and could visit more often.

*I should note that good old HP runs hunger a close second as to 'best sauce', in my view.

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12  Thank S K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 June 2014

Having read so many twitters and food blogs about Parkers arms, we decided to make the hours drive on a lovely sunny Sunday. We booked online that morning and went on our way. The drive up is lovely and scenic.

On arrival, there is plenty of parking and we sat on a table/bench right outside to make the most of the "British Summer". The surroundings are absolutely stunning!
I told one of one of the waitresses we had already reserved and was given some menus. On ordering, I think it he was called AJ, who knew I was a twitterer and made a quick note to the kitchen so we got our #twittertreats. He was so chatty and welcoming and generally made our visit a delight.

Our twitter treat was a bowl of crispy potato skins, not something I would have ordered but a nice touch and the OH polished them off with no complaints.
The menu was not massive which is just as well or we would have never decided what to have! i Do wonder if there is a different menu during the week or evening as there were things I have read about that werent on the menu.

For mains, we ordered the jumbo prawn salad and the lamb & cockles pie. Both were presented very nicely and so obviously made fresh and using good quality ingredients. We also had desserts, a gooseberry sweet and a chocolate mousse cake, again both very good. I found the service from the waitresses a bit hit & miss, had to ask for condiments (which never arrived) and then we were given dessert menus never to see them surface again, it was AJ to the rescue again who ran out and took our order.

All in all, we had a lovely lunch/afternoon at Parkers arms, quite expensive in comparison to what we would normally spend for a "casual" lunch but lovely for special occasions/days out. £50 for 2 mains, 2 desserts & 2 drinks, maybe i'm not used to spending this much for a pub lunch but i guess worth it for the quality
Thanks to bloggers such as foodgeek & Hungry Hoss for shouting out about this place

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6  Thank Kittyf75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 June 2014

We have just had a lovely lunch at the Parkers Arms.The mushroom parfait was delicious and the black pudding sausage rolls were wonderful. Our mains were equally as good. I was delighted with my gooseberry ice cream because I think gooseberries are really underrated, you can keep your blueberries and phyllis.
I only wish I could say something negative because the landlords replies have kept me sniggering all afternoon. There's a book here you know!,
However all I can say is that we had a scrummy lunch washed down with a tasty beer and
I got to indulge my love go gooseberries.

We'll definitely will be back! Blackberries in September perhaps?

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8  Thank Maureen J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 June 2014

My wife and I have been visiting The Parkers since we moved to the area some four years ago. The welcome from AJ, and the standard of the food is second to none! The quality of the food and the sheer passion that Stosie and her team impart into it are evident from the first mouthful- and it only gets better. I often visit at lunchtime with my young (12 month old) son who loves the place and has even sampled some of Stosie's wonderful cooking- I envisage expensive children's birthday parties in years to come!

To quote a recent critic, "They do only what they do. And they do it bloody well."

I can add little else; go, you will not be disappointed!

10  Thank James H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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