When was the last time you set fire to something? Not something so benign as a Jo Malone candle or pretty votive, but a full-on flame engulfing scenario? 

 

Just to be clear, I love The Prodigy’s Firestarter, but I am no pyromaniac. Yet somehow I found myself in the hot seat at The Cock Inn Mugginton when I set fire to my napkin whilst dining there. As small flames hungrily licked the napkin, slowly morphing into larger flames, I sat transfixed. 

 

The reason for the mini-fire at my table?

 

The gorgeously distracting pudding, but more on that later. 

 

It was review night and I had a reservation at The Cock Inn Mugginton. I always do a little pre-review research, and discovered that Mugginton, an uncommon name hailing from Old English, loosely translates into ‘farm of Mugga’, an unknown Saxon farmer.

 

I wonder what Mugga would have thought about The Cock Inn Mugginton? I think he would have been suitably impressed, as was I. We arrived at dusk, and took a few long moments to take in the beautiful site.

 

 

A gorgeous feat of architecture, call it the Ryan Gosling of buildings, stood tall, handsome and imposing. An immaculate outdoor garden flooded by twinkly lights was a sight that kept us rooted to the spot for a few short moments, as we made our way indoors.

 

The interior of the building is as striking at the exterior. Endless anthracite walls, luxurious drapes and exposed wooden beams set the scene for an evening of high end, gastro-pub dining. After the delightfully warm reception, we were seated at a table and promptly placed an order (I studied the menu for the past few days and knew exactly what I was to have). For the uninitiated, the delightfully sprawling menu has something for everyone. From nibbles and starters to sharing boards, burgers and Chateaubriand, this is a menu that is good for large parties with varied palates. 

 

 

I started with seared scallops (prosciutto, cauliflower purée, sultanas). I wolfed the meaty morsels with relish, the perfectly cooked, slightly translucent flesh of the scallop rendering me silent (a rarity, I might add) in quiet appreciation. I love cauliflower and the accompanying purée was very good indeed.

 

 

Dining partner had king prawn tom yum (button mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, rice noodles). This deep bowl filled with a hearty broth (could I taste dashi?) was very good. I especially liked the firm texture of the cherry tomatoes, which provided depth to the dish.

 

 

 

I love a good pie, which is why the individual artisan pie of chicken, ham and leek was my main dish for the night. A deep pie chock full of succulent roast chicken, held together by a pastry with a gloriously short crumb, was divine. My mash was generous and creamy, whilst the side of honey roasted carrots drenched in meaty gravy brought the dish together nicely. It is rare that I finish the whole plate, yet I managed to finish this dish and still have room for dessert.

 

 

Dining partner enjoyed his main of miso ramen slow cooked pork belly (soy pickled egg, bok choy). A personal highlight of the dish (of course I snaffled a spoonful) was the pork belly. Fat rendered perfectly, crispy on the outside yet magically juicy on the inside, this pork belly should be celebrated in its own right. 

 

Circling back to the distracting dessert which led me to set fire to my table.

 

The dessert in question was a sticky toffee pudding (toffee sauce, vanilla ice cream).

 

I blame this sticky toffee pudding. It had me distracted so much – I was totally mesmerised by the pervading scent of deep butterscotch sauce – that I failed to notice that my napkin was alight. 

 

The fire was put out within a minute by my dining partner who wondered what on Earth I was doing still ogling the dessert whilst a small fire danced merrily on the table.

 

The pudding sponge was wondrously light, and the sauce, oh the sauce, was the stuff of dreams. I am still thinking of that dessert, and I think this is testament to the great cooking by the team at The Cock Inn Mugginton.

 

From the warm and welcoming front of house and stellar service, to sublime food (I will never forget THAT pudding), visit The Cock Inn Mugginton now for a spot of luxe, casual dining.

 

Rating: (1: Hate – 10: Love)

Food: 9

Ambience: 10

Service: 10

Restaurant name: The Cock Inn Mugginton

Address: Junction of Bullhurst and Church Lane, Mugginton, Derbyshire DE6 4PJ

Opening times: Mon -Thur 12pm-3pm & 6pm-9pm | Fri-Sat 12pm-3pm & 6pm-9:30pm | Sun 12pm-7pm

Telephone: 01773 550703

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