The Walnut Tree is a thriving hub at the centre of the community in Weston, when it’s not feeding and watering the customers in fine style the pub provides entertainment of all sorts for all the family – as the sign says above the bar “there are no strangers in The Walnut Tree, only friends you have not yet met”. There’s a dart board above the fireplace whose fire is kept replenished with kindling donated by the locals – a neat way of recycling your old wooden fence or tree trimmings from the garden.
When we called in for supper the pub was dressed and ready for Halloween, grey cobwebs festooned the walls, there was wicked witchery afoot in the corners and an especially clever animated skeleton swinging from the window, his gurning skull turning from side to side keeping an eye on us. It was great fun but not enough to scare away our appetites.
For an extremely reasonable price you can eat yourself silly with some hearty homemade dishes; the ingredients are sourced locally, freshly made and all the pub classics are there. The famous walnut burger (no walnuts were harmed in the making of this, just a nod to the pub’s name) sounded very appealing : fresh butcher’s beef burger, topped with grilled bacon, southern fried chicken goujons, barbeque sauce and melted cheese – crikey that would keep you going for a week.
We decided to start with appetisers, where you could pick any three from the list for £11.00, and we chose tempura torpedo prawns with sweet chilli dip, southern fried chicken goujons with BBQ sauce and halloumi fries. After that, fish and chips, battered cod with chips and peas, and steak and kidney pudding also with chips and peas, to be washed down with a pint of good old Amstel lager.
The pub was packed with cheerful punters; they were hosting a psychic night in the conservatory which I didn’t need to attend as I knew my fortune for the night was to indulge in a bit of a carb fest and go home replete and happy. This process began with our appetisers; the tempura prawns were excellent, and I especially enjoyed the chicken goujons whose spicey and crunchy coating would have given Kentucky Fried a run for its money. Our main courses were great, the fish was lightly battered and fresh as a daisy, chips crisp and golden, and my steak and kidney pudding a treat just like my mum used to make, with tender steak and kidney full of gravy spilling out of the delicious pudding when cut.
Jessica Wileman and her team work very hard to make the pub a lively, welcoming, and interesting place to meet and we think they have certainly succeeded.