The Ultimate Burger Time At Sir Nigel Gresley
It feels like cheating coming to review the Sir Nigel Gresley in Swadlincote. The amount of food and pints that I have sank here must be well over the hundreds.
It used to be my non-local local, the place where we would meet after work for a pint or two. Time to catch up on the tales and adventures on what we had got up to over the weekend.
Now it is near a relic, in more ways than one. With the increase of real ales and micro-breweries, the only thing making you walk into a weatherspoons is the cheap prices.
The Sir Nigel Gresley is a different kind of breed though compared to the other weatherspoons in the local area.
You have the Shoulder Of Mutton and Lord Burton which have managed to attract a young crowd with them being close to the clubs in Asbhy and Burton.
With the low prices on drinks it makes it the perfect place to pre-drink and save your wallet from getting harassed by the high price when you make it to the club.
Sir Nigel Gresley doesn’t have the luxury of having a nightclub near it, unless you can call the lounge bar a night club. I think of the lounge bar as more of a testing ground for the latest developments on stab proof vests.
The shame being that the people forgot to bring the vests with them and the free knife pile at the door does become useless. Remember to call for an ambulance yesterday if you are located around the lounge bar.
Due to the lack of nightclub, Sir Nigel Gresely has developed a patronage of relics. Old pit men that have forgotten what it is like to move from their seats. Middle aged men going for a pint to escape their marriage.
The only time that life will breathe in the place is when they reduce their prices down to 20p a pint. But this is yet to happened.
However much crap you can give this place it has a little part to play in my history . For many years when I was younger the most adventurous food that I had was a microwave roast dinner from the supermarket.
It must have been around 19 that I started to find my feet with food and venture into other worldly food. Starting mainly with pizza and kebab.
It was at the Sir Nigel Gresely where I had my first taste of steak.
Having been withheld from protein from the cow gods my steak virgintiy was popped in this here establishment.
Since then I have tried many different cuts of steak but it is like many new things that you try for the first time. They tend to stay with you due to the shock and awe that something as good as this could exist in the world. And the fact that you have only just tried it.
Upon entering the Sir Nigel Grelsey it was as if nothing had changed. There were families in here enjoying an easy 10 pint session for a Sunday afternoon and lots of middle aged men who were slightly looking at each other wondering how long before their wives were on the phone wondering if they will be back tonight.
I placed myself in a corner, thinking to myself am I one of these middle aged men escaping the world. I shook my head to keep those thoughts out of my head and concentrated on the food at hand.
The menu was as familiar as ever so the only decision that I really had to make was what to chose for my starter.
I had decided what I was going to have for my main even before I scanned through the menu in search of what to eat.
The ultimate burger is my go to when it comes to eating at a weatherspoons. Before it used to be the Philly cheese steak sandwich but for some reason they have removed it from the menu.
I’m waiting for the Brexit trade agreements to be made in hope that it will rekindle the dish that was pretty much the only thing that I thought edible at a weatherspoons.
The key things for the ultimate burger in my opinion is the signature sauce. I don’t really know what it is made up of but it makes the burger one of the best pub burgers that I have ever had.
Having no real starter dishes I went for the chicken breast bites from the small plates section. This “Starter” oddly enough came with sticky soy sauce. Not sure what they were going for with this dish but out of the selection it seemed to be the best choice.
Upon reflection I think it would have been best to have gone for dessert, as a quick scan after my meal showed some right gems that I could have had.
Thankfully there are handfuls of other weatherspoons I can go eat at so I will leave that for another review.
I placed my order at the bar peering over at where I was sat to make sure no one was going to hi-jack my stuff.
A short time later and my starter was with me, ready to eat.
The first thing that I thought was that it reminded me of when I had the BBQ chicken from the Tall Chimney.
Served in a metal basket, the chicken breast bites sat huddled together alongside a pot of soy sauce.
I’m not sure who’s decision it was to put soy sauce with this dish. I can’t complain as it wasn’t horrible, but it isn’t something that you grab from the cupboard when you are having some battered chicken breast bites.
The first bite I had made me think of chicken nuggets. Maybe they cannot advertise them on the menu as chicken nuggets due to some sort of copyright issue.
The batter on them was very light and gave a good crunch.
The chicken was of good quality. No offal sandwich in these little clucking bad boys that you might find in other chicken nuggets that you can buy.
The only thing that I think let the dish down was the presentation. Stuffed into a basket doesn’t really give it a “damn son, let’s massage my mouth with these like nuggets of gold.”
I think if it had a bit of a garnish or maybe even a side salad this would have given this dish exactly what it needs.
Half way through my starter I was rudely interpurted by a member of staff.
“Got your burger for you, duck”
I hadn’t even finished half of my starter before having my burger thrusted into my face.
I kinda just abandoned my starter at this point. I didn’t really want to leave my burger sitting there getting cold and I didn’t really want to eat any more of my non chicken nuggets as I would have no time to let them go down.
It’s burger time.
Like I said before, this review is slightly bias due to knowing that this burger is decent. When I next visit a weatherspoons I will go bit more adventurous. Maybe get myself a steak in. Or go for some noodles.
The burger came with a side of chips and onion rings. Again, no side salad on this dish. I am not sure if this is because they don’t believe in salad as being food or if you can order it instead of chips.
The chips were spot on. Nicely cooked, giving them a crunchy coating but nice and fluffy inside. The onion rings weren’t too bad. I have definitely had better onion rings in my life but I would class them as passable.
Now the burger. As I said before, the signature sauce that comes with the burger really does make it. Maybe a bit of mustard, some mayonnaise, and a bit of ketchup.
I am not sure of the make up of the sauce but this is what makes the burger the babe it is.
The beef patty that you get is a good size. No pencil thin burger here. Just a thick wad of meat.
It comes with the standard lettuce, tomato and bacon to finish the package off.
Together, burger as a whole, you get a burger that would frighten the burger shack’s that only specialise in doing burgers.
If you are unsure of what to eat when you go to a weatherspoons then this is an easy choice for anyone. Maybe not a vegetarian but you know what I mean.
The toilets in the Sir Nigel Gresley are of a reasonable size. Located up some stairs and down a corridor you will find the relatively modern decorated house of wee.
Fresh and clean is the vibe I got as stood in the toilet taking in the whole place. The urinals had dividers for those of you that might not perform very well with an audience.
Three toilet cubicles were there for those that are a little shy or are up for something else.
Heading over to Trip Advisor I started to read about what other people thought of this Swadlincote pub.
One unhappy customer made a list of what was wrong with the place. Cold food, missing items of food, hard eggs being just some of comments.
She was blaming this on the chef as when she regularly went in on a Thursday to look for her husband the food was normally a lot better.
The headline from another review read like this:
“The only person missing was Jeremy Kyle”
This must clearly be someone not from the local area. They clearly didn’t know that some of the population of Swad made a living by going on Jeremy Kyle. If that is the case god knows what they were doing spending their time in Swad weatherspoons.
No doubt they left the place and went directly to their therapist for help.
Overall, the food at the Sir Nigel Gresley was ok. Very good for pub food. Good value for money, nice staff. The only thing that you may need to watch out for is that some of the customers may actually bite you. So make sure you are vaccinated up before entering.
Service – 7
Value – 8
Food – 7
Overall – 73%
Telephone Number – 01283 227560