In Search of Sunday Lunch – The Lord Nelson, Ipswich

Isn’t Sunday lunch out great, especially now winter’s lurched into life?  My criteria?  It’s got to be better than I make myself but affordable and relaxed too.  I want to eat a bit too much and chat and linger and well… just one more glass of vino then, go on. We took our chances at the Nelson.  I wasn’t expecting much.  I imagined fusty carpets  clinging to our feet; dark oak panels full of history and festering secrets.  Nope.  It’s light and airy. There are beams, chattering locals and roaring fires though.  When a bus rumbles past the window it becomes super dark.  Seriously, why doesn’t everyone go here? We’d decided not to bother with starters but the cauliflower soup beckoned and oh, ok then, maybe just a few onion rings.
The soup was tasty but not too heavy, warming but not overly hearty.  The brown bread was lightly toasted which made a change from dreary old baguette.  The onion rings were slightly greasy but that’s half the point, isn’t it?  They’re not supposed to be a health food.  I licked my fingers, gazed at the fire and sipped my gin. Service?  Simple but friendly.  Order at the bar.  Oddly, we were asked – twice, in fact – whether we wanted our starters first, before the main course.  Um… yes?  Does anyone want their soup on the side to dunk their spuds in?  At least they asked, I guess.

So.  Beef, cooked rare.  Vibrant greens, roast spuds and parsnips plus a big ‘n’ crunchy but still chewy Yorkshire pudding soaking up the decent enough gravy… I was defeated.

We only managed one pudding between us so it had to be the pear and ginger crumble with custard which was just like my mother used to make (that’s a good thing) but I bet the baked chocolate tart would have been good.

039f1428-d866-48da-bbd0-cddb4684b665-2 With a G&T, a pint, a bottle of quaffable Bordeaux and a cheeky something else after pudding, our bill for two came to around £65.  Our cheeks glowing from the fire and our buttons bursting at the seams, we left the Nelson feeling very happy.  And, oddly, I’m still thinking about that soup.   Lovely.  An absolute hidden gem.

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