Saddle Inn adds a touch of Naples to the menu

pepperoni pizza from the stone bake oven at the Saddle Inn, Lea
pepperoni pizza from the stone bake oven at the Saddle Inn, Lea
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On one of those rare fine summer days my husband and I decided it would be a good enough excuse to lunch out.

We took a trip to the Saddle Inn, Lea with our two children and the dog and dined al fresco, lapping up the sun in the quintessentially British beer garden, surrounded by those fabulous country views whilst the kids merrily entertained themselves in the large fenced in park area.

The beer garden at the Saddle Inn, Sidgreaves Lane, Lea

The beer garden at the Saddle Inn, Sidgreaves Lane, Lea

It’s a terrific spot and feeling a tad smug on my ‘day off,’I gloatingly sent a picture to my friends, wine in hand “Loving Wednesday.” Not hard to imagine the response.

I didn’t bother with a follow up of our freshly baked pizzas, straight from the pub’s pizza oven.

What a stroke of genius to branch out from the usual homemade pub fayre.

“If only they did takeway?”

This week in making amends for my boasting and with it being my turn for our ‘tea club’ I decided to share our new secret find and even provided the wine.

Pizza is after all the perfect go-to for a stay-at-home meal to entertain friends.

A quick call to the team at the Saddle and they were more than happy to cook up a fine selection of authentic tasting pizzas, pepperoni, vegetable, two all out meat feasts and a tomato garlic bread.

It’s a 10 minute drive from our Fulwood home. Mark was sent out for the pick-up and I put the oven on just in case our food might need warming through.

I didn’t get as far as heating the plates. As soon as those cardboard pizza trays landed, there was a hands frenzy in the kitchen.

There was still pizza left and there was no washing up - result.

The crusts were perfectly baked , slightly crisp around the edges but with a soft base and just the right amount of topping and cheese, which beautifully bubbled on top but did not overpower that fresh-bake smokey taste.

I enjoyed them all but the flavour of the pepperoni itself was exceptionally good and I found myself picking at the remaining pieces over the rest of the evening.

The rest I found left on the worktop the morning after , when I discovered the four-year-old had decided she wanted to help herself to an alternative breakfast.

Given the development in the area and few ‘takeaway’ options, I’m sure the Saddle Inn has hit upon a new niche and the very best of luck to them, we will definitely be amongst the regular punters.