10 reasons to visit Estrella Damm Gastropub Top 50 winner The Unruly Pig

This cod agnolotti is flying off the menu at The Unruly Pig.

This cod agnolotti is flying off the menu at The Unruly Pig. - Credit: Archant

This Suffolk pub has once again been honoured by Estrella Damm. Owner Brendan tells us why it’s so special.

The kitchen team at The Unruly Pig in Woodbridge. Picture: THE UNRULY PIG

The kitchen team at The Unruly Pig in Woodbridge. Picture: THE UNRULY PIG - Credit: Archant

Brendan Padfield, owner of The Unruly Pig in Bromeswell was delighted last week to win Best Front of House Team of the Year in the Estrella Damm UK Top 50 Gastropub Awards 2018.

This follows the country pub’s listing in 2017 as one of the top gastropubs in the UK.

Brendan said: “I’m thrilled. Proud. Absolutely chuffed to bits. This means so much to The Unruly Pig team – it is so encouraging and rewarding for all the hard yards done by them.

“Great service requires constant and consistent attention to detail and that’s damn hard work. To have received this accolade after only being open two years speaks so much, I hope, to what a lucky man I am in having such a dedicated and enthusiastic team. I hope it is also an encouragement to others that anything is possible with determination and focus.”

The Unruly Pig at Bromeswell.

The Unruly Pig at Bromeswell.

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Here are Brendan’s top 10 reasons to visit the award-winning pub.

It’s different and quirky

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There’s only one Unruly Pig in the UK, and according to the Estrella Damm judges the gastropub is a reflection of the personality of the owner!

Britalian food

The Unruly Pig serves fresh, seasonal, local (wherever possible) British food with an Italian influence. Risottos and fresh pasta abound, but there’s something for everyone, be it poached trout fillet with a ragu of white beans, clams, pancetta, artichoke and hazelnuts, or the super fast-selling Pump Street brioche burger with Roquefort mayonnaise.

The salted caramel tart

This scrummy pud does what it says on the tin. It is certainly salty. And it is certainly caramel, with chocolate butter pastry. It can be polarising for some but customers pleaded with us to put this back on the menu. Ninety per cent say it’s wonderful and 10% hate it and say it’s just too salty. It’s certainly on the edge, but when we cut back the salt there were howls of protest!

Some of the best service in the UK

It’s now official thanks to us being awarded Best Front of House Team 2018 by Estrella Damm. We are all about serving great food but without any pretension.

Bags of character - and cool art

The 16th century inn has roasting wood burners, sloping ceilings, oak beams and an eclectic collection of Brendan’s art, which ranges from local artists, to contemporary pop art. In the men’s loos there is even Mao Se Tung propaganda art. Most customers love it but some make the mistake that I may be a Mao supporter. He was a terrible despot!

Very dog friendly

Dogs are genuinely welcomed in the bar area. Customers love that there is a water bowl and doggy treats waiting at their table when we’ve booked to arrive with a dog.

It’s in walking country

The Unruly Pig has also been named a top five UK pub for walkers by the Financial Times.

Over 50 wines by the glass – including fine wine

Almost every wine on The Unruly Pig’s eclectic list is available by the glass, and we have ‘driver’s measures’ of 50ml. Top top that, there are a range of ‘driver’s drinks’ such as damson spritz, made from the damsons picked in the garden.

It’s one of Suffolk’s best bargains

We offer two courses at lunch or dinner for £16 Monday to Friday.

There’s a dedicated vegetarian, gluten-free and dairy-free menu

We embrace customers with dietary needs and deliver at least three to four choices for each course on each of the dedicated menus. I just thought how frustrating it must be to be offered only one or two choices if you have to eat, say, dairy-free only.

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