Social media. Love it or loathe it, it’s here to stay.

Three or four years ago we were fairly regular visitors to the Woolpack at Whitley but the licensees back then had moved on and the pub had slipped off our radar.

It was a ‘share’ on Facebook that pointed us back to the Woolpack, a traditional-style country pub with a large dining area.

The Woolpack had now been taken over by the people who run the popular Blacksmiths Arms at Kirkheaton, we were told.

We love the food at the Blacksmiths so it was a no brainer to head back to our old haunt.

On a hot and humid Friday afternoon my partner Sian and I decided to walk up to the Woolpack from our Mirfield home.

The shortest – and most scenic – route was following the paths through Hopton Woods, skirting Dewsbury District Golf Club.

Speaking of social media I’d just taken part in a training workshop on the fledgling social media network Snapchat.

It’s a new way of telling stories in video and pictures and likely to be the next big thing. Remember where you read it first.

Time to get in on the ground floor, I reckoned, so I decided to try out an alternative food review by recording our visit on Snapchat.

Stumbling through the woods I was glued to my mobile phone so let Sian choose the paths to follow. Big mistake.

Video thumbnail, Martin Shaw's Woolpack Snapchat
Video Loading

Even though we’d been through the woods before she veered off towards the golf course and we ended up endangered by flying golf balls.

A minor domestic ensued as I was accused of being too interested in my phone. Lost in the woods. Make a good story anyway.

Well, we weren’t really lost, of course. We re-traced our steps and I took over as pathfinder in chief to lead us to the relative safety of the Woolpack.

Our little adventure made a humorous (in my opinion) Snapchat but for those social media buffs among you let me warn you that Snapchat doesn’t half drain your phone battery.

By the time we sat down in the pub my phone was about to expire. So much for my alternative food review. There was the walk in the woods but, erm, no food.

Sorry, boss, I’ll have to review this place the old-fashioned way. And could I claim one of those nifty phone charging gadgets on expenses please? (No, just remember to charge your phone – Ed).

By coincidence we had arrived on the day the Woolpack launched its new menu. For the first three months it had shared the menu with the Blacksmiths.

The portions at the Blacksmiths are huge, too large if anything. But the food’s great. Fortunately, the grub at the new-look Woolpack is great too.

There’s a good selection on the menu, all the pub grub favourites but with a creative twist. There’s obviously a confidence and a swagger from the chef.

For starters I chose the Fresh Seared Welsh Scallops (£7.95) served with delicious pieces of pancetta and sweet and succulent pea shoots in a mint puree.

It was beautifully presented and had the ‘wow’ factor. And it tasted even better than it looked. The best starter I’ve had in a long time. I wanted to lick the plate. I didn’t.

Sian went vegetarian with the Goats Cheese and Sun Blushed Tomato Parcel (£4.25), perfect summer fare, complemented by a homemade spiced apricot chutney. Lots of thought go into these dishes.

Goast Cheese and Sun Blushed Tomato Parcel starter at the Woolpack in Whitley, Dewsbury.

Lemon Chicken (£10.50) was my choice for the mains. The tender chicken was roasted in lemon and honey. Subtle and delicious. It was accompanied by noodles fried in a wok, which added more flavours to tantalise.

Sian’s Honey Glazed Duck Breast (£12.95) was a well-cooked piece of meat and was served with the spiced apricot chutney again and a red wine jus, which had a lovely consistency and a prominent flavour from the wine. A crispy salad bowl came with it. Lovely.

The portions are generous but not as over-facing as we’ve known at the Blacksmiths.

“Would you like a dessert?” asked the waitress. A loaded question if ever I heard one. Give us five minutes to ‘think’ about that one.

The homemade desserts (£4.95) are on the board. I hadn’t come across Chocolate Bread and Butter Pudding before so had to try it.

Chocolate bread and butter pudding at the Woolpack in Whitley, Dewsbury.

It came with two scoops of vanilla ice cream and could have been stodgy. Instead I found it surprisingly light and the chocolate gave it a richness.

Sian scoffs at the very mention of bread and butter pudding. “A pointless dessert,” she calls it. Fair enough but this is posh bread and butter pudding.

Keeping to the summery theme Sian had the Homemade Strawberry Cheesecake with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Another winner.

With my phone as dead as the proverbial there were no distractions on the walk home. We found a short cut and it was downhill all the way.

I’m sure we’ll find our way back soon.

The Bill

Woolpack Country Inn, Whitley Road, Whitley, Dewsbury, WF12 0LZ

Tel: 01924 490114

Website: No

Opening hours: For food 12noon-9pm Monday-Saturday and 12noon-8pm Sunday

Children: Welcome

Disabled access: Yes

The bill: £55.20 including drinks

Would you go back? Try to stop us!