Lancashire tastes great

Following the horse meat scandal, where equine DNA was found in beef burgers, I suspect there will be an increase of people who will be thinking more about where their food comes from.

Sunday, 3rd February 2013, 11:00 am
The Villa, Wyre Green

So it was refreshing to go to a restaurant where it was possible to know everything was locally sourced.

Not only that but one of the producers was actually in the room to tell us about the meat he produces with his family.

The first Taste Lancashire Produce Event of this year was hosted at The Villa, Wrea Green, this week, and it proved to be a very tasty experience.

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Marketing Lancashire’s Taste Lancashire Produce events, such as this one, is aimed to demonstrate the food available right on our doorsteps.

The venue for our Lancashire evening was a country hotel in the village of Wrea Green.

It was once the residence of a 19th century gentleman, and judging by the size of the hotel and lavish surroundings, he must have had some money.

As well as a spectacular venue, it’s convenient to get to, just off junction 3 on the M55.

I had never been to The Villa before but it was easy to get to from the motorway. The eaterie is a Taste Lancashire Quality Assured restaurant and is located next to the bar.

It has a historic feel with wood panelling and antique furniture, and is also cosy and welcoming.

A roasted parsnip soup with honey veloute started off the evening for me. A real winter warmer, this was just what was needed for the cold weather.

My friend began with Leagram’s Nannykin goat curd salad, complete with shallot, cauliflower and beetroot mousse.

It was all laid out in fine Masterchef style, yet there was plenty to eat and her verdict was a thumbs up for tastiness.

Lentil hotpot, with roasted root vegetables, was her healthy main course, which scored highly for being delicious.

I opted for Pugh’s Piglets porchetta medallions, with potato Anna layered with black pudding. The potato and black pudding looked a little like mincemeat wrapped in pastry and tasted as great.

The pork was tender and sumptuous and it was good that there was plenty of it to eat. Cider veloute added a delicious sweet taste to the meal.

Local producer Richard Pugh, from Pugh’s Piglets, told diners about his family’s farm.

I was pleased animal welfare was important to them.

We just about had enough room for dessert after such good food.

My friend had chocolate and pistachio cake with vanilla parfait, while I had a plate of buttermilk pannacotta, pineapple fritter, apple sorbet and 
apple sherbet.

Such a choice, but the portions were just the right size. We left feeling pleasantly full.

The Villa’s bar and restaurant is open daily for morning coffee, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner. For bookings ring 01772 804040 or visit For Taste Lancashire events go to