In the centre of the pretty village of Upottery in the Blackdown Hills, is The Sidmouth Arms. It is a nice welcoming pub and fairly busy for such a remote location. As always I had rung ahead and checked that they could cater for me as a coeliac – and was very happy with the level of knowledge of the person who answered the phone, so I booked us for Sunday lunch.
When we arrived, we were met with a warm welcome, despite our very soggy appearance. The pub itself is full of character. We were sat in a corner, by what would have been a roaring fire, but it wasn’t lit. That would have been fine for a normal Spring day, but on this particular day it was very cold, wet and miserable and so it would have been nice if it were fired up. However, they did switch on the radiator for us, so we could dry off. Hubby was very happy as they had a choice of three locally brewed beers on draft.
Starter at The Sidmouth Arms, Upottery
We knew we were both on for a big feed (well we had walked in the pouring rain to get there!), so we decided to share a starter, to leave enough room for the other courses. Obviously, normally it would come with bread, but they kindly put the bread to one side, so it wouldn’t contaminate my food. It was a lovely starter. The Marie Rose sauce had the right balance of tart and creaminess.
Sunday roast at The Sidmouth Arms, Upottery
There was a choice of meats to have as part of the Sunday roast. I fancied turkey and hubby decided on the lamb. The portion size of the roast was very generous. The meat was cooked very well and the vegetables were just al denté, which is how we like our veg. Hubby said his lamb was really delicious and my turkey was very nice too. My only criticism was that the gluten free gravy I was given wasn’t very nice – quite watery and tasteless.
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Dessert at The Sidmouth Arms, Upottery
Of course we had to try dessert. Hubby ordered a banoffee pie – he never gets this at home as no-one else in our family likes bananas, so he’s on his own there. He had the choice of cream, ice cream or custard.
I asked what I could have and was told that there was a gluten free lime mousse… yummm…. When it came, it was in a medium-sized sundae dish – full of lime mousse. It was very lovely, but too much quantity and all the same taste. It would have been better with a biscuit (gluten free of course) or even shards of dark chocolate to break up the taste.
All in all the food was really nice – beautifully cooked and presented. Unfortunately the coffee wasn’t that nice – but we are coffee snobs. I get that they aren’t a coffee shop, but a good coffee after a three course lunch would have been the icing on the cake.
Food is served from 12.00 to 9.00pm every day and 8:30 on Sunday.
Gluten free friendly: A very good knowledge of gluten free.
Child friendly: They have a young person’s menu and high chairs.
Disabled access: Access to the bar was okay, I’m not sure about the toilets though.
Dog friendly: Well behaved dogs are allowed on leads throughout the pub.