Muddy Eats: The Wheatsheaf Inn
This traditional, family-run pub is quite possibly one of the prettiest pubs I've ever visited and the food is not bad either. Shall we?
The Wheatsheaf Inn is an attractive stone pub in the heart of the quiet, picture perfect and totally Instagrammable village of Woodhouse Eaves. It’s a few miles from the city but well worth the trip partly due to the scenic drive past Cropston Reservoir and along the beautiful stretch of countryside road, shaded on both sides by ginormous trees.
The building dates back to the 18 century and still comes with original features like the wooden beams and stonewalls. When I visited it was too hot to sit inside and luckily I managed to bag the last table outside on the sunny terrace at the front of the pub.
The Nixons have been running the pub for the past two years and have done a damn good job as far as I could see. They’ve paid special attention to the outdoor seating including the colourful flowers dotted around the decking area and window boxes. The exterior of the building is made even more beautiful by the ivy-clad (found in abundance throughout the village) stone facade.
You can grab a pint and sit downstairs at the bar or if you’re here for food, there’s seating to the right of the bar. I had a little wander when I arrived and took a sneak peek at the upstairs restaurant space which had a real homely feel.
SCOFF / QUAFF
The Nixons like to support the local community as much as possible and try and source as much from the surrounding region. The menu changes regularly and it’s not quite gastro territory but it’s definitely excellent local pub fare. I wasn’t too adventurous and picked the halloumi burger – it came with a chunky slice of roasted red pepper, sweet potato fries and coleslaw. I know it’s only a burger but I couldn’t fault it – from the soft, sesame bun right down to the unusual but delicious basil mayonnaise it was well worth the £12 considering the hefty halloumi slice.
It’s worth mentioning that their Sunday roasts look tempting and start from a generous £13 and their Woodhosue Smokies have got quite a good rep – smoked haddock, cooked with white wine, cream and tomatoes with a crunchy cheese topping, served with granary bread.
THE MUDDY VERDICT
Good for: Relaxed families, casual drop inners, Sunday lunchers. Cyclists, walkers, young diners (they have a kids menu )
Not for: Those looking for super-trendy interiors or a posh gastro experience. There’s no play area for the kids and even though the terrace is at the front of the pub, cars drive through this area to get into the car park so it’s not safe to let kids run around here.
££: Middle of the road on price, pub classics from £8.50 and two courses from the kids menu for under 12s is £7.50.
The Wheatsheaf Inn, Brand Hill, Woodhouse Eaves, Leicestershire LE12 8SS. Tel: 01509 890 320.