On one of the last mild Sundays we will probably have this year, we went as a family, to review a lovely little hideaway in a park local to us, called Pavilion At The Park. Apt name as it is literally that, a gorgeous Victorian building set in the core of one of Bedfordshire’s finest public parks.
The boys were delighted to be let loose in the glorious acres of leafy space with the promise of a hearty lunch at the end of it. As the early autumn sun shone upon us, we meandered through the vast expanse enjoying the basic pleasures mother nature had to offer. Our weekends largely centre around lazy lunches and this was no exception.
A bit of footie, some bike-riding and an impromptu find of ‘dinosaur imprints’ later, we were all ravenous so we headed to the central point of the Park, situated North of the glorious bandstand to the most welcoming sight.
Draped in colourful bunting, there was no mistaking this as the heart of the park. As people congregated around the bustling kiosk area, feeding their pooches with complimentary treats, it was clear there was a need to feed here.
The menu is not extensive, it is concise. I was relieved that the boys both swooped on the specials selection of pulled pork in a brioche bun option without fuss and to prevent food envy, I jumped on the bandwagon. John is a big pasta man, so it was an easy pick for him.
The neighbourly atmosphere inside warmed our cockles as tea cups tinkled and the aroma of coffee and cakes wafted all around us. The breakfast crowd had reluctantly moved on and a flurry of expectant lunchers descended.
As we waited the short time for our dishes, we enjoyed some warming drinks encased in Instagram-pleasing crockery, you know the kind which will stand up to a good, hand-warming hug? Bliss! I couldn’t have knitted a prettier venue, which is topical as they regularly host ‘Lemon & Ginger’ Monday meets – a must for any local knitting or needlework enthusiasts!
The children got stuck into a game of Gruffalo dominoes to pass their time while the feeling of Zen took over us!
Promptly, our lunch arrived and the boys got tucked in. A deft flick of the garnish on to the side of their plate satisfied them, where usually any sign of a pickle or a rogue sauce would put them right off. But they were so relaxed and at home here, it mattered not a jot. For the record, my garnish was dish-delish, but you know how fussy children can be!
We washed our luscious food down with huge jugs of iced water and lemon, which the children loved being in charge of, as it’s a help-yourself shot.
Mains done and the boys were getting itchy feet, so for our pudding we decided to head out to the alfresco area and watch the park life go by.
Dominic and Harry enjoyed sitting at a table by themselves nearby us, as I took photos and chatted to the friendly neighbours sinking coffee and cakes like they were going out of fashion.
I realise this post is one of my few Prosecco picture free ones – woe is me! However, it was all about the cake and the Pavilion has oodles of events going on including Jazz nights and supper clubs which will provide plenty of opportunity for that! It was a tea & cake kind of a day!
John & I tried to plan for an evening here to enjoy one of the many themed nights going on, and the pop up chefs were high on our lists! They have fab half-term Hallowe’en events for kids too – result!
This place really supports the local community and this was tangible in the art adorning the walls as well as the local produce used in the dishes.
We were loathe to depart but there were so many needy customers eyeing up our table by this time, we headed off for (more – sigh!) football fun. This perfect pit-stop was just the job and we headed home red-cheeked and satisfied after our delightful day at the Pavillion.
Have you been? Where is your favourite leafy eaterie? Let me know and if it’s nearby I will review it!