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the queen's head, belton, leicestershire.

Found in the Leicestershire countryside, The Queen's Head is a cosy pub and restaurant that boasts five refurbished rooms. The Belton based establishment pride themselves on using the best ingredients and local producers to create seasonal menus mostly inspired by British and European cuisine. The bar area is dog friendly, whilst the restaurant has a more modern and refined feel for birthday meals, special occasions and date nights alike.

Entering the restaurant, you're met with a snug seating area lit up with fairy lights and candles. Although we were waiting a while to the staff's attention, it was a warming and welcoming area that gave off a great atmosphere.

Since we're finally seeing the beginnings of Spring, it was a nice touch to see fresh daffodils on the tables alongside the candles. Upholstered pews were a nice touch, set back with leather seating, wooden tables and quaint heart chalkboard for reserved signs.

To begin, we went for Crispy duck egg, cannellini beans, chorizo and spinach (£8) and Mussels steamed in a Thai red coconut broth (£8), which both arrived promptly with our wine. Although quite pricey for starters, they were both elegantly presented and full of inviting, fresh colours.

On an earthy bed of pulses and smoky chorizo, the mouthwatering runny egg yolk and crispy outer shell was just delicious. A starter I'd definitely recommend, regardless of the price tag. There were a generous amount of mussels, with fresh herbs and chilli to set off the spicy and fragrant broth. It was a shame it didn't come with bread, a spoon or lemon bowl though, as it meant you couldn't lap up the delicious sauce or clean your hands afterwards.

For mains we opted for Queen’s Head Cheese and Bacon Burger (£14) and the 6oz Fillet Steak (£24). Both coming with triple cooked chips, the double burger was served in a homemade bun with in house ketchup, topped with a gherkin and a pickled onion. It was tricky to eat, but that was expected. The burger patty itself was satisfyingly pink and flavoursome, with great seasoning. It was a shame the brioche bun was a little dry to really set the burger off.

The steak was a great cut of meat, which was cooked to medium/rare and well rested. With an extensive wine list, we enjoyed a couple of glasses of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot to marry perfectly with red meat. The peppercorn sauce was evidentially homemade, with a great kick and smooth texture.

And the chips. Oh, the chips. Too often these are overlooked when accompanying burger and steak dishes, but these are the best I've had in a restaurant in a long while. As you can see, really crispy, golden and rustic with plenty of cracked black pepper and sea salt.

To finish, we went for a Stem ginger and pineapple pudding and Chocolate fondant with peanut ice cream. Not something I would go for, the steamed pudding was a generous portion and well enjoyed with classic custard. I went for the chocolate dessert, with a seriously indulgent ice cream with great textures.

Overall I'd definitely recommend The Queen's Head as a countryside, foodie destination. It was a really busy Friday night and with minimal waiting staff they were rushed off their feet. However when we did get their attention, the staff were friendly and eager-to-please. It seemed like large groups, families and double dates were enjoying themselves, with a musical act planned that evening to entertain the crowds.

Have you been to The Queen's Head in Belton? What are your favourite pub restaurants in Leicestershire?

The Queen's Head2 Long StBeltonLoughboroughLE12 9TP
We dined as guests of the restaurant. All opinions are honest and my own.


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