*We last visited The Night Jar in November 2017. This is an archived post*
The Night Jar Inn in Aylesbeare is one of East Devon’s newest foodie destinations – catering for a growing market of local foodies who appreciate modern country style and who aren’t afraid to spend their hard-earned cash on quality food & drink.
Open throughout the week – except Sunday evenings & Mondays – The Night Jar Inn offers its guests the opportunity to sit back in a relaxed contemporary pub atmosphere and enjoy a menu sourced from within a 15-mile radius of the Inn. After seeing one too many tempting images of the Inn on social media, we couldn’t resist popping in last week to see if The Night Jar was going to be a real contender on the Devon foodie scene.
*I’ll keep this post short and sweet, for no other reason than the fact that I don’t have many good photos from our recent visit… The lighting just didn’t quite agree with my camera and I therefore didn’t manage to get many images to do the restaurant justice. Next time!
The Decor at The Night Jar Inn
As I mentioned previously, The Night Jar Inn seems to have been designed with a specific audience in mind. The thirty to forty-something country crowd will no doubt appreciate the finer interior design details at The Night Jar. As well as a large fireplace and cosy leather sofas, the owners have opted for a Country Living colour palette, alongside some industrial-chic elements and the occasional decorative skull (I think I counted about six of them in total, but there may have been more).
There’s also a nice split level aspect to the restaurant, in which diners seated upstairs can look down into the bar below. All in all, I thought that The Night Jar was very tastefully decorated and I can see it appealing to those who place ‘dining out’ near the top of their hobbies.
The Food at Night Jar Inn
Of course, the most important aspect of the evening was the food and I was intrigued to see how The Night Jar compared to other Gastro Pubs and ‘Destination Inns’ such as The Five Bells or The Jack in the Green.
For my main, I couldn’t resist ordering the local Venison. How a chef tackles this ingredient is usually a good indication of their skills and frequent readers of The Devon Foodie will no doubt be aware that I recently raved about my venison dish at The Church House Inn, Rattery. Well, the venison at The Night Jar Inn was also very well executed. I found the portion size to be very generous and the meat was beautifully cooked (nice and pink).
Loin of Venison, Cauliflower, Blue cheese, Pear & Fondant Potatoes was priced at £25. I’ll admit, this surprised me. I wouldn’t think too much about paying that sort of price in a fine dining restaurant, but for a newly opened Inn I did think that was a little steep. Having said that, I maintain that it was a very tasty dish and money aside I would definitely order it again.
My dining partner opted for the classic Fish and Chips. At The Night Jar Inn, this takes the form of Greendale Battered Hake, Chunky Chips, Homemade Tartare Hollandaise & Mushy Peas. At £14.50, this was again at the top end of pub prices. However, the fish was meaty and very flavoursome – with a lovely light batter that won’t leave you feeling like you’ve over-indulged. The homemade sauce was also a nice touch and the mushy peas seemed to go down rather well!
Overall First Impression of The Night Jar Inn
All in all, our dinner at The Night Jar Inn was a success and I would certainly encourage you to try it out for yourself. With an estimated 27 British pubs closing every week, it’s great to see a new establishment opening its doors to the local community. I will certainly be intrigued to see how the prices will be received by locals, but when it comes to the quality of the food and the excellent levels of service, I should imagine that The Night Jar Inn will be here to stay.
Have you been to The Night Jar Inn? Let us know what you thought below!