I had planned to take my Grandparents down to The Joker for lunch when they visited this week to show them the best chicken in town, but I’d forgotten that my Nan had open heart surgery like 30 seconds ago and isn’t ready to walk that far yet (duh) so when they arrived I had to improvise an alternative, ASAP. The Half Moon is about thirty minutes down the road in the car, is cool with me taking pooch, and does banging food, so they were my first thought.
As we pulled in, I saw a sign outside advertising the specials menu at 3 courses for £15 and I almost cried because who doesn’t want to eat three dishes on a Tuesday lunch time before work?
We sat in the super fancy corner right by the window overlooking the gorgeous garden, and Molly was perfectly happy sat under the table with her lead tied to my chair leg.
Depending on what time of day you go, the vibe at The Half Moon can vary. If you’re unfortunate, you may find yourself in there at the same time as a lot of uppity types that give you side eye for looking like you’ve never owned a pony, but most of the time you’ll be among friendly walkers, families and quiet old people. Being there at midday on a Tuesday afternoon thankfully landed us in the company of the latter.
The specials menu well and truly utilised the power of three (an obsession of an old boss of mine) offering three choices for each course, all of them appealing. There was one vegetarian option for the main course and one for starter, the vegetarian main option was pasta which I know some people scorn for being unimaginative but it was a blue cheese situation and did sound nice, I promise. Not nice enough though to steer me away from the pork belly, because crackling.
The bahjis were great – and it’s hard to get the right amount of flavour into those things, I’ve been trying for months to nail them myself – the salad was dressed simply and the sweet chilli sauce wasn’t the glue-like overly sweet kind. The pork belly blew my mind. It’s as delicious as it looks, the mash was a dream and the gravy was lush. I’m 100% drooling right now just remembering it, and I am not saying that for effect (because when you think about it, it’s actually a pretty gross thing to say). I finished on cheese because I couldn’t handle ice cream or bread and butter pudding after all of the above.
After we’d finished each course, we all said something along the lines of “this is great value isn’t it” or “the portion sizes are generous, aren’t they” or “god, this is really good” which is, I’m sure, a signifier of a menu worth dropping in for if you happen to pass through Plumpton anytime soon.