The Marquis of Ormonde is a traditional village pub on Codnor Denby Lane, which proudly and rightly, boasts fine ales and quality food. Local businessman John oversaw the restoration of the Marquis in the summer of 2012 and since then this popular public house has grown in strength in what we know is a very competitive industry. He had a vested interest in making sure the Marquis measured up to his standards as it was his local. The crisp, clean, modern décor along with quality furnishings forms a very pleasant place to drink and eat, with comfortable semi circular settees providing ideal seating for families and groups. We were given a cheerful welcome by manageress Kerry who quickly and efficiently showed us to our table, took a drinks order, then ran through the specials board for evening. We warmed to her pleasant disposition and ability to put us at ease quickly. There were one or two gathered around the bar and with my favourites; Doom Bar, Taylor’s Landlord and Speckled Hen on tap, I was a happy man. As it was Friday night the restaurant area was filling up quickly and we watched as some very pleasant dishes of food were served. We both decided to have a paté starter although very different in content. Both were served with a mixed leaf side salad and generous slices of ciabatta bread, mine was a deliciously smooth liver paté with a pot of spiced chutney which set my lips tingling. My wife chose the pyramid of creamy stilton supported by slices of pear, a classic combination. For my main course I just couldn’t resist the ‘Pile ‘em high’ fillet steak. When the starter arrived I immediately doubted my choice for main as the starter was quite large and I wanted room for the steak. I was up to the task though and as I sliced the steak and Kerry asked ‘is everything ok?’ I told her it was and it genuinely was the best fillet I have had for a long time, beating even a five star restaurant we dined at recently. So, impressed by the steak, I asked where it was from and was not surprised to be told that the butcher used by the Marquis is C N Wright at Codnor who are renowned for the quality of their meat. Jane chose the chicken in sweet chili, lightly pan fried with the chili just adding a touch of heat and a pot of sweet chili sauce to dip into, it went well with hand cut chips and a pot of chunky coleslaw. When it came to sweets we were quite full but the display of desserts in the chilled cabinet a few feet away proved too much to resist. Our sweet was part apple pie, topped with a buttery crumble and drizzled with a toffee sauce which, as the sweet was served warm, just melted down between the crumble into the apple, served with a pot of single cream and it was absolutely beautiful. As this is John’s own pub he is often to be seen around and after our meal he came and sat with us to chat. He is delighted with the progress the Marquis has made this past year, and the next few weeks will see further improvements to the outside. It has quickly become part of village life again. The choice of food ranges from fillet steak at £16.95 to the Sunday lunchtime carvery at £7.95. We had a thoroughly lovely evening in a very relaxed atmosphere.