Reviewed by Norman Totton
On Saturday 7 March, my wife, our two daughters (aged 5 years and 2 years) were invited to an open day at Brewers Fayre Old Brickworks family pub to celebrate the relaunch of their children’s play area.
We turned up with high expectations as we had been promised a good afternoon out for us and the children, and I have to say we were not disappointed. From the moment we entered the pub to the moment we left we were looked after by the wonderfully friendly staff, every one of whom went above and beyond the call of duty to ensure that we and our children (and everyone else and their children) enjoyed our time in The Old Brickworks.
The revamped soft-play area was a treat for the children, not so big that an eye couldn’t be kept on them but not too small that the children would be tripping over each other all the time. My wife and I felt very comfortable in sitting back to let them have a free run around knowing that they were safe within the very well-padded and very clean play area.
The play area has a Beano theme (think of the comic book!) and Dennis the Menace features highly. Our two kids had never heard of Dennis the Menace but they were instant converts when who should appear in person, but Dennis, meeting and greeting adults and children alike. He also appeared a while later with his dog Gnasher under his arm. Our children fell in love with Dennis and Gnasher on the spot (we’ve been told we have to get Dennis and Gnasher DVDs).
Of course, as well as the soft-play, the other main reason that someone would go to a place like this is the food. The menu is extensive, and I would challenge anyone (even the fussiest of kids), not to find at least a couple of dishes that appealed. I opted for the old favourite or fish and chips, and I have to say, it was really very good. A generous portion, served with chunky chips and mushy peas. The batter on the fish was light and crispy, and the meal came out piping hot. Top marks for that one. My wife is an altogether more difficult proposition when eating out, being a sufferer of coeliac disease. Possibly only someone with personal knowledge will understand just how difficult this makes eating out, but full marks to The Old Brickworks for this one. The allergen menu was brought out, and the General Manager took the time to discuss not only the options available, but also the procedures in the kitchen to avoid cross contamination etc… Utterly fantastic and even her cutlery was brought out separately and we all felt really reassured about kitchen practices. She chose a jacket potato topped with prawn mayonnaise and a side salad and said it was excellent.
The kids’ menu is all Dennis themed, which our two thought was great. They chose sausage and mash (tasty, and an excellent portion size) and a cheese and tomato pizza (fresh, not at all stodgy and the perfect size for a young child). Both ate really well and thoroughly enjoyed their meals. Puddings were just as good: chocolate brownies for the girls and a lemon cheesecake for me and the most fabulous looking banana split for my wife.
We had opted to eat at one of the tables in the soft play area, so the kids zoomed off after finishing their food for another play whilst we were able to enjoy a relaxing(ish) coffee and digest our food. Obviously, we could equally have chosen to eat in the main part of the pub, which offered quieter surroundings, but the kids were enjoying themselves so much, we stayed in the play area.
We had an amazing day. The food was excellent, a cut above the usual soft-play chain pub fayre, and the kids having such a wonderful time meant we could really relax. Every single staff member was friendly and helpful, and engaged really well with the kids as well as the adults. The toilets were really clean – my wife commented that the ladies near the soft play could have done with more than two cubicles, but that really is the only slight issue about the whole day.
The food and the soft play both offered excellent value for money, and we will absolutely be returning.
Well done, Brewers Fayre and The Old Brickworks. Wonderful for adults and kids alike.
For more information, to view menus or to book a table click here or call 01132 879 132.
Brewers Fayre, Wakefield Road, Drighlington, BD11 1EA | 01132 879 132