THINKING small is definitely making a big impact in one Saddleworth venue as its new menu is proving very popular.
The Old Bell Inn in Delph has introduced small plates to its offering, meaning customers who want a bit of variety can satisfy their desires.
But those who want to enjoy one to start, share some or even have on the side of a main meal can also indulge themselves.
And when Saddleworth Independent visited on a Tuesday afternoon, not normally a time associated with packed eating venues, we saw just how well the introduction is going down.
Landlord Phil Whiteman said he decided to introduce the small plates about six weeks before the Independent called in, saying: “That style of eating is getting more and more popular.
“When I go out, I like to have different options – a bit like tapas – and that is influenced from when you go away on holiday.
“And it’s proving really popular too.”
For the price of £22 for three items or £35 for five, patrons can order their choice from honey barbecued pork belly, salt and pepper squid, tikka chicken thighs, tempura courgettes, Old Bell nachos, flatbread and dips, Old Bell meatballs, garlic and chilli king prawns and baked rosemary and garlic camembert.
For an extra £4.95, you can add patatas bravas to your table – and as the Independent found out, each one is cooked to perfection.
You may be in Saddleworth but the tastes can take you to Seville or St Tropez – and the full tables were a clear sign of their popularity.
Available all day, the small plates have proved a great addition to what Phil – who has been at The Old Bell Inn since 1999 – offers.
The regular menu, including the set offering for seniors and those with smaller appetites, remains available.
But this new addition has seen many sample different things, while the hotel at the Huddersfield Road site is proving popular.
“That’s a big part of the business,” added Phil. “And if you get a bit complacent, people can forget about you.
“Which is another reason why we’ve brought in the small plates. That can appeal a bit more to a younger crowd.
“People think, ‘I’m not a senior citizen but I want a smaller plate.’
“And just like you would get in a Spanish tapas restaurant, the food comes out when it’s ready.”
Things may be changing at The Old Bell Inn but one thing remains constant – Phil.
“I could just walk away and retire but I still enjoy it,” he told Saddleworth Independent. “And what else would I do?
“I’ve still got that spark. It’s part of my life. It’s not a job.”