The Dancing Jug

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An original, independent review by :

As I enter the Dancing Jug I immediately notice the warm and welcoming air that fills the room.

It’s well-lit with wall lights, spotlights and candles without being blinding after a long day. Acoustic music competes with the general buzz of post-work chatter, but this adds to the homely feeling of a local, without the huge crowds that often populate larger chains.

The cream and mauve walls give the place a more chic feeling than the average bar but it doesn’t deter too far from a traditional pub feeling, with wooden tables and leather bound bar stalls. With only a few round tables at the entrance and a small row of dining tables at the rear, the Dancing Jug is an intimate place, which is perfect for a drink after work or relaxed dinner with friends.

My guest and I are greeted by a very friendly barmaid, who allows us to choose where to sit. We opt for a table towards the back and begin scrutinising the menu, which is printed on one side of A3.

Although not hugely extensive there’s something to suit all tastes, with pasta dishes, salads, burgers or a selection of tapas-style starters. The lunchtime menu also looks appetising, with paninis, soup and wraps, but unfortunately doesn’t run into the evening.

In true pub fashion I go for the ‘secret recipe’ burger, made from locally sourced minced beef and accompanied with homemade chips and a side salad. My guest chooses the less traditional option of a Caesar salad.

After a short wait our meals appear, looking well presented and a generous size. I eagerly pop a chip into my mouth to discover a crispy coating over a deliciously fluffy potato filling and cant wait to taste my burger.

I cut through the perfectly toasted bun –not a burnt bit in sight to reveal a mouth-watering looking burger, topped with tomato and a pesto sauce. Its cooked wonderfully and has clearly been freshly prepared. The sauce is also a pleasant accompaniment, making a nice change from the usual mayonnaise that many pubs provide.

My guest’s salad is topped with a generous amount of chicken and just the right level of Caesar sauce, so the leaves are neither too dry nor drowned in a sea of dressing. The croutons are beautifully crispy, the lettuce tastes fresh and the anchovies offer a fishy kick.

Our meals are cleared and the waitress asks if we’d like anything else. Her smart-casual dress of jeans and heels suitably matches the sophisticated yet relaxed vibes felt in the Dancing Jug. Her smile never falters and she’s constantly polite and friendly, making our dining experience even more enjoyable.

She regrettably tells me they don’t have a desert menu but each night offer a choice of puddings, tonight’s consisting of New York Cheesecake or Chocolate cake, so I decide on the latter.

It soon appears, complete with decorative mint leaf and splashes of raspberry sauce. As I slice through the spongy layers I find they’re lovely and moist, without being too rich. The cream inside tastes fresh and the crumbly flake topping adds a crunch to the hugely tasty desert.

I finish my meal feeling full and thoroughly satisfied, my bill coming to a reasonable £13.95. Although not ideal for a romantic meal, the Dancing Jug is obviously a great venue for a group looking to enjoy a good hearty pub lunch/dinner, or to unwind after work over an alcoholic drink, which I will definitely be doing in the future.

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Currently there are "4 comments" on this:

  1. J Beeching says:

    After myself and some friends bought our Groupon voucher I tried to booked a table for 10 people mid week. I had to ring via a groupon phone number and was told i couldnt booked for 10 people due to the chef not being able to cope with such a big order at once. Strange I thought, so as a group of 10 we went elsewhere.
    My Husband and I went for our Groupon meal last nite and found a large party (10 possibly more) dining. Which didnt start the evening well. We waited 1/2 hour for our tapas which seemed to be at groupon voucher portions 4 chunks of cheese, 3 meat balls & 3 fish nuggets £4.50each from menu
    Main meals arrived about 15 mins later, Steak & burger was ok (steak again groupon size) but the chips were just filled with grease.
    Shame, nice bar area but would not go back again.

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  2. J williamson says:

    {This comment and two others from the same source were removed to comply with Community Guidelines due to content and for spam characteristics}

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  3. Unmasking Pepipoo says:

    We dine out regularly and received a call from some friends who said that they were going to the Dancing Jug in Bournemouth and would we like to join them.

    They said that they had received a coupon deal, which is something that we do not normally look at but thought why not, so I telephoned the restaurant and explained that our friends wanted us to join them but we felt uncomfortable if we had to eat from a different menu.

    The person who answered the phone said that it was the same menu same meal but we would just be paying more. You would think that any decent restaurant would be pleased to sit another two people at the table and extend the coupon offer to the party since apparently the coupon deal was to attract customers.

    Decided to give the Dancing Jug a miss

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  4. Julia R says:

    [This comment has been removed by BHbeat to comply with our community guidelines]

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