I first wrote about my local – The Bird in Hand – a while ago now but am reprising the post as it has just enjoyed a rather viscious battering from food critic, Tom Parker Bowles in Event Magazine – Mail on Sunday. I admit, I don’t really go out to Sunday lunch but on every occasion I have eaten there (and we do go there a lot for weekday lunch), the food has been delicious and it rather annoyed me to see it being so belittled.
The staff are very friendly, the service is brisk and considered – but best of all, dogs are welcome if they are well behaved. All the rather delicious food is homemade and freshly prepared with two courses from the Handy Menu starting at GBP13.50 and three at just GBP16.00. The Sunday Special Roast from just GBP15 for two courses and GBP18.50 for three – and is popular with locals.
Thanks to the local Waterlooville website, I learn that the FA Cup spent part of WWII at this Victorian pub. Portsmouth FC won it in 1939 just prior to the war and the cup had been kept in the City until the threat of bombing raids necessitated a move to the safer surroundings of The Bird in Hand. The landlord kept it hidden under his bed! Due to the war in fact, Portsmouth FC can claim that it has held the FA Cup for the longest period. It returned briefly in February 2009 for a charity fundraising event.
Address: 269 Lovedean Lane, Lovedean, Hants, PO8 9RX. Tel: 02392 591 055. The Bird in Hand is on Facebook too.
So do ignore the food critic and go and try it out for yourself, using your own judgement. If going for dinner or Sunday lunch, we recommend you book a table as its normally very difficult to get in.
Contributer: Sue Lowry
Photographs: Top – Sue Lowry – Multi-food – Website – The Bird in Hand
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