Review: The Fighting Cocks, Moseley

It’s now January (happy new year everyone!) and purse strings are a little tighter and social calendars a little emptier. To get us through the January blues, I’m a fan of cheering up the weeks with the odd meal out, but certainly on more of a budget. Now, I’m  not one to turn my nose up at some good ol’ pub grub, so when I was invited down to the Fighting Cocks in Moseley, it was a very welcome addition to an otherwise dull week. I was interested to see if this chain pub could provide that cheap and cheerful meal that so suits the time of year – some comfort food in cosy surroundings. Read on to find out if the Fighting Cocks is worth a visit.

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Located on Moseley High Street, the Fighting Cocks is in a gorgeous old building, which I am reliably informed has been graced by the Smiths! Inside, the decor is more a traditional cosy pub, but with a few stylish touches. A roaring fire and a friendly member of staff greeted us, and the service was fantastic throughout the evening. After ordering from the extensive wine list we browsed the food menu, which all seemed very reasonably priced and with a good couple of options for vegetarians.

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Jack started with the goats cheese roulade. We weren’t expecting much from this dish, but it really was the surprise of the evening. There was a generous portion of goats cheese, the tartness of which was wonderfully offset by the sweet pecans. We both agreed that it tasted far better quality than we had expected from a chain pub – and for only £5 I would certainly recommend it!

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For my starter I opted for the fried squid, which was served with an asian dressing and a kale salad. The squid was well seasoned and went wonderfully with the crunchy salad that was packed with flavours which were all brought together with a good squeeze of lime. The squid itself wasn’t anything to shout about, but again, a very reasonably priced and enjoyable starter.

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For his main Jack went for the red pepper and quinoa veggie burger, served with fries, pesto, and a spicy mayo. We’ve certainly had our fair share of pants veggie burgers in our time, and I’m pleased to say this one wasn’t added to the list! This burger was moist and the pesto really worked with it. The presentation, as with most dishes on the evening, had been thought out without being too much, which is sometimes the case with pubs trying to keep on trend.

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I chose the ale battered cod and triple cooked chips for my main. The cod was huge and really fell apart when cut into. The chips were some of the best I’d had in a while, and very indulgent (which surely, is what you want when you order fish and chips!). This dish was served with mushy peas and tartar sauce, both real winners. As far as this pub classic goes, I can’t think of how this one could have been improved!

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Dessert is where things started to go a bit down hill, which is so often the case in these kinds of places. The menu was small and we weren’t excited by anything, but fancied something sweet all the same. Jack went for the orange polenta cake served with sorbet. This was just fairly average, and very dry without the sorbet. I went for the trio of macaroons with vanilla ice-cream. This is the only course that felt overpriced, as three out-of-the-packet macaroons and a scoop of ice-cream certainly didn’t feel worth £5. It was, however, still enjoyable for what it was, particularly the ice-cream.

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Overall, we were pleasantly surprised by our experience at the Fighting Cocks, having not had our hopes very high before the evening. The service stood out as being a particular highlight, giving it a nice ‘local’ feel that encouraged you to come back. Though this chain pub is nothing special as such, if this is the kind of grub you’re after the Fighting Cocks certainly does it well, for a reasonable price and in a cosy, welcoming setting. Thank you to everyone at the Fighting Cocks for having us!

This meal was complimentary for review purposes. This does not affect my honest opinion.
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