Integrity at the heart of every dish never diverts from the path of classic gastropub greatness.
Occupying a supremely inviting location/position twixt proper pub and upmarket modern bistro, the Marlborough Tavern offers an appealing blend of friendly familiarity and a fresh, smart outlook in both decor and menus. Whatever your mood, size of party or occasion, the Tav can accommodate your every whim without the folk next door impinging on your personal space, with big, chunky farmhouse tables giving great group and plenty of smoochy tables for two for the old romantics amongst us. In the mood for a spot of alfresco high-jinks? The private walled garden outback (complete with a considerate all-weather awning at one end) offers an indoor/outdoor experience all year round, and friendly, well-informed staff make any kind of pitstop here an utter pleasure; little wonder, then, that this is one of the most popular upmarket contemporary pubs in Bath, highly regarded for the kind of fabulous food that keeps regulars, locals and visitors to Bath revisiting on a regular basis.
Marlborough Tavern menus are generally of the faultless modern British variety: plenty of twists on classic themes, all made from largely locally-sourced ingredients that boast a perfect pedigree. The kitchen enjoys a long-standing reputation for gastropub greatness… and of late, such an ante has been upped even further, as exuberant chef Jack Scarterfield recently took to the hob as Head Chef; only a handful of weeks into his residency, and we’re delighted to report that Jack has settled in very well indeed…
From a pre-dinner splurge of silky, creamy homemade taramasalata served with a huge slab of focaccia to proper puds that made all notion of calorie-cutting-back-on totally redundant there was, quite simply, nothing not to love about our most recent trek to the Tavern. We shared one starter of devilled lamb kidneys on sourdough toast, the richness of the sublimely sweet/savoury offal cleverly offset by just the right amount of devilment and a broad bean/fresh mint combo. A second starter bought plump, moist, moreish morsels of cod cheek scampi to the party, with pea puree and proper tartare sauce adding pace and rhythm to an already upbeat medley. For mains, for me, tender lamb rump served with Jersey Royals that tasted of fresh air and sunshine and good times, a bold wild garlic puree, sweet little baby carrots and a zingin’ salsa verde; for Him, perfectly roasted Brixham skate wing and cheek on super-creamy mash, teamed with a brown shrimp and caper butter that, to be honest, I could happily slather on hot toast every morning of the week and still not tire of. Cheffy? Yes – Jack’s style is confident, his flavours bold, his combinations exceedingly well-considered. But arrogant? Not in the slightest; there’s a downhome integrity at the heart of every dish that never diverts from the path of classic gastropub greatness.
Elsewhere on the MT’s charm (in)offensive, lunch offers broad appeal to both the speedy, upbeat office break crowd and the long’n’lazy, “let’s waste a whole afternoon” hedonists (surely we don’t need to explain which category The Pig falls in to?) The Sunday Roasts are legendary around these yer parts, and little people are considerately catered to too. Meanwhile, various dining events including the legendary Steak Nights and seasonal tasting menus throughout the year ensure that Tavern time never stands still.
- Wheelchair access ,
- Free wifi available ,
- Dog friendly ,
- Gluten free options ,
- Baby changing facilities
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