THE Red Rover, near Romsey, is everything a local should be.

With wooden beams, large tables, invitingly soft seats and the cosy atmosphere of a well-worn drinking establishment, this is a place where you can easily while away the hours.

Feeling peckish after a busy day, my husband and I picked the house-sharing platter to start.

This was generously packed with fried offerings, including breaded mushrooms, onion rings, garlic bread, c h i c k e n wings and chips. It was definitely £7.49 well spent, and could well have been shared among more than just the two of us.

The southern fried chicken burger was equally well proportioned, with the large chicken breast bulging from the toasted brioche bun.

The sandwich was also packed with salad and sauce, providing the perfect pub grub accompanied by a refreshing pint, handily included in the price.

Although my trousers were feeling uncomfortably tight following the starter and main course, I had already greedily eyed up the dessert menu and could not refuse the Black Forest gateaux cheesecake.

With layers of chocolate cake, mousse, cherries and vanilla cheesecake and accompanied by a fruit compote, this was definitely the main event for me.

E v e r y mouthful was delicious, and the different flavours and t e x t u r e s worked perfectly.

Although the service was not as attentive as it could have been – I lost patience in the end and ordered desserts from the bar instead of waiting any longer at the table – I suppose it suited the casual feel of the laid-back pub.

And at a grand total of £32 for a three-course meal for two people, including drinks, I really could not complain about a little slack service.

It was basic nosh but left me satisfactorily full without breaking the bank.