What compels you to venture dining out? For me, it is the prospect of a new environment. Don’t get me wrong, I love the four walls of my very pretty flat, but it is the idea of a fresh voice, a new face that is one of the main drivers for me at the moment.


The far-reaching, trans-national impact of Covid-19, both physical and mental, means an overwhelming effect on multi-generations the world over. I for one have found myself wanting to talk even more (yes that is possible) and find that my loquacious tendency is best sated by being surrounded by those who are equally chatty in a talk inducing environ.


Enter The Tap in Derby, situated slap bang in the city centre and boasting views overlooking the River Derwent.


I have visited before for drinks and always loved its buzzy vibe. For review, it is a Thursday evening and we are visiting the second in the Derby Brewing Company stable. I am looking forward to it after a somewhat ‘blah’ week. Following the usual Covid-19 safety guidelines, we are soon seated at a table near the entrance.


The menu is accessible and versatile, serving everything from beer battered fish and chips, to ale and maple glazed pork sandwiches and albondigas.


We order a few sides of poutine and Padrón peppers.



I love poutine. If I see it on the menu, I will order it and earmark to get as a takeaway too. It is twice cooked chips, cheese, and onion gravy – what’s not to love? It is a decent portion, and the meaty depth of the ale and onion gravy makes the chips all the more dunkable. I wish the curds had more bite, but this is a preference, not a negative.



Padrón peppers arrive with customary charred exteriors and I don’t come across any that are hot. Being served with a side salad dressed with pickled onions is something I have never seen before, and it is interesting to see these ingredients together like this.



My beet and bean burger is good. I like the texture of the burger consisting of beans with a slight chew, and smooth, earthy beetroot. What I love about this burger, is that it is vegan without bashing you over the head with it (so it would appeal to carnivores too). The vegan mayonnaise is especially good, and I wish more eateries served this. I have a long-standing feud with regular mayo (made with egg), but more on this later. This burger here, looks like a regular burger (that’ll be the usual suspects of iceberg lettuce, beef tomato and pickled red onion). However, the flavoursome patty ensures a repeat order in the future. 



Partner has trio of butcher’s sausages (wholegrain mash, seasonal greens, beer and onion gravy). Fat, gleaming, seasoned sausages with a hint of thyme, are good to chow down, whilst the wholegrain mash is one of my favourite components of this dish. Yes, I swiped a forkful, no I am not ashamed of stealing mash.


Food arriving at our table is punctuated with witty conversation courtesy of Dave and team. We also make conversation with two other tables in the 2metre+ vicinity and it is so very good to chat to new faces, that we wind up loitering with intent till way after our meal has finished.


The Tap is a wonderful place to be. It is homely and good and the conversation and patrons are what make it all the brilliant. This, coupled with the solid food offering, means that The Tap is on my list of places to revisit.


The Tap is participating in the government’s Eat Out To Help Out scheme. Every Tuesday and Wednesday throughout August you will get 50% off your bill (up to a maximum of £10 per head).


Ordering via the dedicated app is recommended. Pro-tip – download the app before you arrive at The Tap. Although it only takes a few minutes to input info, I find it streamlines the dining process and also gives you time to familiarise yourself with the app. Here’s the link.


Take advantage of the glorious weather and pre-order food from The Tap when dining at Derby’s newest dining experience, Derby Market Place. Don’t worry if the sun isn’t out but the rain is – the covered dining areas mean you can dine al fresco but not get soaked. For more information, please visit the website now.


Food: 7.5/10

Ambience: 10/10

Service: 10/10


Restaurant name: The Tap Derby

Address: 1 Derwent Street, Derby, DE1 2ED


Serving food at these times:


Mon                     Closed

Tues – Wed      5pm–9pm

Thur – Sat         12pm–3pm | 4pm–9pm

Sunday              12pm–5pm


How to make reservation: Email [email protected]

Telephone: 01332 366283

Covers: 80

Head Chef: Sean

GM: Tom

Front Of House: Dave

Caters for dietary requirements: Yes

Wheelchair friendly: Yes

Quietest table: Snug area by turning immediately right upon entering.

How to get there: Situated in the heart of the city centre, is a 2 minute walk from Derby Bus Station

Website + social: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Whilst in the area: Take a stroll down River Derwent and go duck-spotting.