Many Lincoln diners will know of The Duke William on Bailgate, albeit maybe not for the right reasons. Now part of the Lincolnshire Pub and Kitchen Group, boasting three sister sites in Lincoln (The Horse & Groom, The Royal William and The Ferryboat, Washingborough) The Duke William underwent a £500,000 refurbishment early September 2015 and reopened on the 1st of December the same year.
The pub has undergone a large transformation but still retains a traditional pub style and feel. The building dates back to the 17th Century and has retained a lot of original features, walls and fixtures that are listed and kept in beautiful condition.
Additionally nine spacious bedrooms are available in the hotel and there is also an adjoining self catering cottage that can sleep up to six guests with exposed brickwork and a large lounge area.
The Duke William stocks a rotating selection of four ales and on the lager taps they have Sharps Pilsner, Amstel, Hophouse 13, Birra Moretti, Prahva and Staropramen.
We arrived at The Duke on a particularly cold February evening and were greeted with a friendly welcome and a fantastic open fire, which created a warm and cosy atmosphere in the beautifully charismatic pub… a great start.
After settling in a window seat with a rather nice Amstel lager in my dining partner’s hand and a pint of Birra Moretti in mine, we took stock of the food on offer.
The menu offers a traditional and appealing selection of dishes, from Asian duck salad and rigatoni to hearty meals including British beef pot roast and gourmet beef burger. My dining partner and I both opted for pâté of the day with caramelised onion chutney, dressed salad and toast followed by chicken in a puy lentil sauce from the daily specials board for my partner and Moules Marinaire for me.
The restaurant prides itself on quality local ingredients, cooked fresh to order and everything is freshly prepared using only local suppliers. The starters certainly lived up to expectations with the smooth rich pâté, accompanied by crunchy toast providing the perfect bite, sweet home made chutney and beautifully fresh salad going down a treat.
After a short rest our mains arrive which were equally as impressive. Both of our plates were piled high, so you don’t need to worry when it comes to portion size, although you may need to worry about whether you’ll finish it or have room for dessert though.
My partner’s special of chicken in a puy lentil and creamy wild mushroom sauce with crispy kale was beautifully cooked and declared exquisite. My favourite of Moules Marinaire was equally delicious. The mussels were generously sized and perfectly cooked in the creamy Marinaire sauce which was eagerly mopped up with the accompanying crispy on the outside (fluffy inside) hand cut chips.
We did, for once, manage to order a dessert and decided on the cheese plate to share which consisted of generous portions of Lincolnshire Poacher, Stilton, Brie and Wensleydale and Cranberry, served with a delicious chutney and selection of biscuits. An ideal end to a delicious meal.
All-in-all, it was hard to fault our experience at The Duke. The food was great, exactly what you’d expect at a traditional pub, and at the right price. The staff were also fantastic. It’s easy to see why the Duke is now attracting attention for all the right reasons. We will definitely be back to what is a great addition to Bailgate’s culinary scene.
The Duke William serves freshly prepared food 12-9pm daily including their hugely popular roast dinners served every Sunday. Reservations for both dining and hotel can be made at www.dukewilliamlincoln.com
Venue: The Duke William, Bailgate, Lincoln.
Parking: On street parking at the front of the pub on Bailgate (with restrictions).
Cost: £54.85 inc. drinks.
Verdict: Delicious food in a beautiful setting.