The Cross Keys
The Cross Keys is located on Main Street in the pretty village of Epperstone. It has ample car parking, extensive outside seating front and rear, and a delightful family garden. There are a couple of chickens scratching around and even room for the pony if you choose to arrive that way!
As much a countryside fine-dining experience as a local pub, the Cross Keys has been recently refurbished, creating a classic but relaxing space. In ‘The Kitchen at the Cross Keys’, as this pub is branded, chef Des Sweeny focuses on simplicity and quality, with fresh seasonal menus changing regularly depending on what the butcher and fishmonger have to offer.
All fresh ingredients come from fully traceable sources, including vegetables from the pub’s own kitchen garden. In the restaurant, dishes range from pan-fried pigeon supreme with crisp pancetta & raspberry dressing, to grilled salmon and monkfish kebabs, beetroot and goat’s cheese rissotto, and Iberian pork cheeks braised in apple sauce. There is a lighter menu, including mini burgers and a huntsman’s pie with homemade chutney for eating at the bar or in the garden. And the pub prides itself on its ‘house’ bread and butter pudding with butterscotch sauce.
The Cross Keys is a characterful village pub with an excellent menu and a delightful setting, and to top it all has also been shortlisted for the 2016 Nottingham Post Food & Drink Awards.
By Abby Brennan, Nottinghamshire editor