Meet the Chef at the Rose and Crown

Somerset Life meets Craig Emery, Head Chef at the Rose and Crown in East Lyng, near <br/>Taunton, which offers home-cooked, seasonal dishes, with ingredients sourced practically <br/>on the doorstep

How long have you worked at the Rose and Crown and where have you worked previously?I began working here in May this year and before that I was working at the King Alfred in Burrowbridge near Bridgwater.How would you describe your style of cooking?I would say adventurous. Having only been cheffing for two years, I am still finding new flavours and developing new skills.Where is your favourite place to eat in Somerset? I couldn’t pick a favourite, but whenever we get a chance to eat out, my wife and I enjoy restaurants and pubs that use local produce.What inspires you about living and working in Somerset? Living in Somerset has been a huge inspiration in my work, as I am very passionate about using local meat and locally grown fruit and veg. I think it is so important in small communities to support local farmers and small businesses because sadly so few are surviving these days.What would you like to achieve at the pub?Trade has gradually been picking up at the Rose and Crown since Paul and Shirley took over, so my main goal for now is to continue increasing trade and building a great reputation, not just within the village but further afield.  What is your favourite dish on the menu and why?Call me boring, but my favourite dish is always a good old steak, with the option of a delicious selection of home-made sauces. Having been reared just two fields away, the beef doesn’t get much more local than that.What local beverages would you recommend in particular (alcoholic and/or non-alcoholic)?I would recommend any of our award-winning ales brewed in Devises by the family-run Wadworth, which obviously complement any of our dishes. We also have a very good and varied wine list.What is your perfect Christmas lunch?When it comes to Christmas lunch, personally I am not a fan of the traditional turkey. I prefer a goose with all the trimmings,  washed down with a large glass of mulled wine. Do you have any Christmas traditions you always adhere to?Christmas for me is all about relaxing, as it is the one day of the year I don’t get roped into cooking, so I eat to excess, enjoy a drink or two, and usually by 8pm I’ve fallen asleep watching the same film that I do every year.

Sample MenuStartersHome-made roasted tomato and basil soupFigs stuffed with goats’ cheese and wrapped in parma hamHome-made chicken liver pat� with red onion marmaladeMain coursesTraditional Roast turkey dinner Baked bream with fennel and orangeWild mushroom, brie and cranberry wellington  DessertsChristmas puddingHome-made cr�me br�l�eHome-made sticky toffee pudding

The Rose and Crown, East Lying, Taunton, TA3 5AU. 01823 698948Prices: Starters from �4.10, main courses from �6.95 and desserts from �3.95Opening times: Lunch is served from 12 noon-2.30pm and dinner from 6pm-9pm Monday-Saturday; 12 noon-4pm Sunday

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