Queen of the Loch is a fairly new addition to the restaurant scene in Balloch. The restaurant is a branch of carvery chain, Marston’s, so it was a cheap but decent option for five adults and my cousin’s two year old. The branch has been open less than a year, so everything is shiny and new, including the small section with toys for children. The atmosphere is pretty relaxed – we picked our own table, and you order your food at the bar having chosen between the carvery and the other menu options.
Both my mum and my eldest cousin went for the carvery, selecting the medium plate at a very reasonable £6.25. This allowed them to choose from three different roast meats – from which they were able to have one slice of each. Alongside this, they could choose a Yorkshire pudding, stuffing and as many potatoes and vegetables as they wanted. All in all, you can get a pretty sizeable plateful, and it’s not too bad a choice for those trying to be healthy as you can return for extra vegetables if you wish to.
The rest of us chose from the main menu, which offers the typical pub main courses, including a number of burger options. I went for the Golden Breaded Scampi with Chips, Peas and Tartare Sauce. The scampi was indeed golden and crispy and there was definitely plenty of it. The chips were fine, although I’ve had better – not quite as crispy as I would have liked but at least they were cooked through. My aunt enjoyed a good sized portion of Chicken Tikka Masala served with Rice, Naan Bread and a Poppadum, whilst next to me my cousin tucked into a towering Bacon and Cheddar Cheese Chicken Burger and Chips. Even my cousin’s little boy tucked into a reasonably sized Cheese and Tomato Pizza served with Chips and Beans. While it’s hard to guess the quality of the pizza it was definitely enough to please Adam.
Service was fine, although when my cousin stopped mid-meal to take advantage of her free drink refill, she had to wait for quite a while as there was only one person working behind the bar. Other than that there were no complaints.
Everyone was going their own way after lunch so we only had one course, but I was drooling over the desserts in the cabinet we passed on the way out. Huge cakes, pies and other desserts took up the shelf space, and I think I would return just for a taste of one of them!