What is a gastropub?
Have you ever wondered what a gastropub is? Well, you’re in the right place… We’ve pulled together all the most-asked questions about gastropubs, giving you a few interesting facts to drop over your next round of drinks. Oh, but be warned… We’ve included pictures of some of our most irresistible gastropub dishes, so you’re about to be hungry.
The Gastropub, explained!
The word “gastropub” is a combination of “gastronomy” – meaning, “the practice or art of choosing, cooking, and eating good food” – and “pub.” Put simply, it brings together everything you know and love about a classic pub setting, from warm welcomes and cold pints to traditional architecture, and adds one final ingredient to the mix: a high-end menu that puts seasonal flavours and ingredients in the spotlight.
This phrase was first coined in 1991 when David Eyre, restauranteur, and Mike Belben, co-founder, took over The Eagle pub in Clerkenwell, London, turning it into the first ever ‘gastropub’.
For the first time, the beloved pub was elevated from a place to socialise over a few drinks and became a place for all kinds of social occasions. A place where the entire family could get together for mouth-watering dishes, friends could gather for an irresistible Sunday roast, and pairing your favourite after-work beer or wine with a mouth-watering dish became the norm. After all, who could resist? Before the invention of the gastropub, you’d likely have nothing but a pack of nuts or pork scratchings to keep you going until you got home. Thankfully, we’ve moved on.
What is gastropub food?
Even if you’re not quite sure what gastropub food is yet, you’ll remember how it made you feel if you’ve had it before… Gastropub food is restaurant-quality food served in the stylish surroundings of a traditional pub with modern touches. Depending on the pub and the chefs that work there, a gastropub menu can feature all kinds of dishes, but they’ll always have one thing in common: they’ll be crafted with expertise, passion, and using only the finest of seasonal ingredients and flavours.
In fact, gastropub menus will often change throughout the year to guarantee that only fresh, in-season ingredients are used to spoil guests.
So, what will you normally find on a gastropub menu? Well, you can expect upgraded versions of many of your favourite pub classics, including battered, line-caught fish and chips, crispy onion rings, multiple types of chips or ‘fries’, and seasonal pies.
You’ll also discover cuisine inspired by flavours and dishes from all over the world, opening the door to starters like fresh Italian burrata, and main dishes like pan-fried seabass fillets, king prawn, crab and chorizo linguine, and sweet potato massaman curry. For those with a sweet tooth, you might be tempted by gastropub desserts like a home-baked chocolate brownie or a raspberry, cookies & cream, and yuzu meringue cheesecake trio…
That’s just a few sensational dishes plucked from a gastropub menu within the Eat Drink Meet collection, if you’re wondering where we got our inspiration… We have plenty more to tell you about gastropubs, but if the above descriptions have you running to book a table at your near gastropub, we’d understand.