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Exclusive! The seagull has landed

Not for the gull-ible: The Monro pub on Duke St perches a local delicacy on the bill as Heather (the feather) Smith pecks a punch to report...

Published on January 14th 2010.

Exclusive! The seagull has landed
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OVER the past few years, ostrich, Welsh buffalo and a mysterious batch of ‘lion burgers’ have all appeared on the menu at The Monro, Duke Street. The venue, which is currently in the final stages of an extensive restoration programme, is due to re-open to the public next Friday, the 15th August. To celebrate the revamp, rumour has it that the Monro will deliver their most squawking delicacy to date: seagull.

The notoriously noisy white seabirds are being pitched as ‘the new ocean infused chicken.’ In these times of economic uncertainty, when people are continually feeling the pinch, a green meat is what we need. No intensive farming required. No expensive grain-based animal feed. However hard the credit crunch bites, can it really be true that seagull meat is finding its way on to our plates?

It does make you wonder, though, how might a seagull taste? A little salty perhaps? Or does it all depend on diet and where it spent last night? Who knows?

Stuart Sculthorpe, Monro manager and man responsible for the seagull strategy simply offers "seagull tastes sublime."

I’m not convinced. Surely there must be seagull-selection process. I mean, the greyish scraggy type don’t exactly whet the appetite in the same way as, say, the white majestic sort that egotistically perch on promenade lamp posts.

One thing is for sure, as well gulls green credentials; there are enough of them to go around. The buggers are everywhere. Apparently, the urban gull population has risen across the country in recent years due to the wide availability of food for them, the discarded takeaway tray etc.

They can be violent too. Six years ago, Liverpudlian John Shaw believes he was directly targeted by a gull in the city centre because he was wearing shorts.

The vicious gull (and it wasn't just the accent playing gull-ish tricks), was obviously offended by bare limbs and ‘dive-bombed’ Mr Shaw more than five times, he told BBC News. It is in fact legal for local authorities to take action-in the form of shooting or poisoning- should any particularly aggressive gulls pose a threat to health or safety. Killing a gull for one’s nourishing pleasure is surely perfectly legal.

Unlike with, say lobster, there would be no firing line around the court-yard whereby you could select the individual gull you intend to gobble. No, the Monro are keen to supply only the tastiest seabirds. No scrawny, scabby-looking city birds will be used, only the finest, such as the succulent squad that apparently frequent Anthony Gormley’s Crosby beach masterpiece, Another Place. From there, the seabirds are to be screened for health and fitness before being humanely despatched, ending up on your plate. If you’re dying to try the seagull specialities that the Monro has to offer, you’d better hurry down to the venue from the 15th as, using only elite birds, stocks could potentially fly out.

On a more serious note, in the first week of re-opening, each couple ordering a 2-course meal will get a bottle of organic wine thrown in for free. You can’t flap at that. The Monro rightly prides itself as being one of the city’s great conversation pubs. A bottle of wine or two in the always-friendly Monro environment will no doubt set you on the road to talking gull.



The Monro, 92-94 Duke Street, Liverpool, L1 5AG
0151 707 9933

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24 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

LadyboyAugust 6th 2008.

I'm really rather fond of a bird with a pecker.

OystercatcherAugust 6th 2008.

Waiter, the bill please!!!

I love curryAugust 6th 2008.

Youve convinced me curried gull mmmmmmmmmm.

Charles HawtreyAugust 6th 2008.

"you could select the individual gull you intend to gobble". Definitely a bit of innuendo I say

LadyboyAugust 6th 2008.

A waistline no girdle could restrain is even more of a geographical, and some might say, culinary delight, Mizz Jaques.

DigAugust 6th 2008.

Word of advice for anybody trying the seagull. Avoid the tartar sauce. The waiter drops it on your plate from a great height. The other day he missed the plate and it landed on my shoulder.

KnowlegeableAugust 6th 2008.

I think you will find, Prof, that they are all eating in the Gull-shan.

LadyboyAugust 6th 2008.

Hattie, where are you my Rubenesqe lovely? I long to explore your fleshy mountains and mysterious valleys. Yes, I'm smitten, you are the only gull for me.

A fanAugust 6th 2008.

This will be in there next

Professor ChucklebuttyAugust 6th 2008.

Ready?What time is last orders? T'd like to know when the bells are ringing for me and my gull.Anyway this is one in the eye for MacDonalds. Or Mayo as they call it.Why has there been no comments from Gregory Peck, Anthony Quale, Peter Finch and Walter Pidgeon? Or for that matter, Placido Flamingo,Lark Gable, Duck Van Dyke, Russell Crow, Mia Sparrow, Tweet Williams, Sean Canary, Sir Laurence Oliverbird,Fidel Kestrel, Bela Lugoosie,Donald Pheasants,Amy Winegrouse, Moorhen Friedman, Bird Reynolds, Elisha Rook jnr, Peter Falcon, Kite Winslet, Hugh Grant...well Mrs C. thinks he's a tit.And relax.

DigAugust 6th 2008.


Jonathan Livingstone SeagullAugust 6th 2008.


Bird BrainAugust 6th 2008.

Is it just my dirty mind, or was Ms Smith's description of seagull, 'tasting slightly salty, depending on diet and where you have been the night before' a knowing double entendre?

Rusty SpikeAugust 6th 2008.

Forgive the assumption but Ms Smith seems to have a squeamish side to her gormet nature, although clearly the shrieks of lobsters being boiled to death are apparently acceptable. Years ago before 'gentrification' (ha, ha) erupted along Duke Street, the Monro was run by a cheery Chinese chappie who would dish up the most mouth-watering of fayre - mostly after hours as this was a time when the old rap on on the side window was the order of the day for hard-boiled imbibers and drunkards. Now, as most folk will acknowledge the Chinese will eat everything and anything, so there would have been no qualms then about seagull - in fact I would hazard a guess that we might have often after midnight been tucking into stir-fried pigeon and the occasional platter of chilli seagull beaks.Of course, in those days - the mid 1980s- the 'fashionable and gelled' had yet to re-discover Duke Street and the Rope Walks tag was just being dusted down. Terry Duffy and his pals had established a terrific independent artists and artisan colony in Arena House - of course recently closed down and the 'creatives' banished by smarmy frocks and suits and bureacrats with pads and folders, so that Duke Street could be officially designated, naturally, a 'Cultural Quarter'. Arena - now shuttered and sad looking - was next block down to the Monro - and thirsty and hungry painters, printers, designers, poet, sculptors and other sundry types who live outside the boxes, would stumble for solace into the dark, gloomy and then grubby confines of the Monro which was, thankfully, one of those rather down-at-heel boozers that repulsed pretensions and would have swallowed up and spat out the gormless gaggles of orange tanned fifth rate wannabe 'celebrity' loons that prance around Liverpool these days.Now, of course, the Monro is part of the 'New Livercool' which will soon have dispensed (heh, heh) with all the old-style pubs and drinking dens in favour of establishments that serve up sauteed seagull in a prune goo and spuds roasted slowly over blazing chips of dried bark stripped by hand from ancient oak logs dug out of the bogs of Cheshire. The city is well on the route to becoming bland, meaningless and lacking character - but full of glitter, glass and steel structures that rebuff human frailties.Bring on the seagull, mine host.

Barbara WindsorAugust 6th 2008.

I like a big pecker now and again

Hattie JaquesAugust 6th 2008.

I bet it's all all bang-cock to you. BEND OVER!!!!!

codheadredAugust 6th 2008.

ooh whatever next? kangaroo steaks? oh no its a "Marketing Ploy" how clever..

Joan SimsAugust 6th 2008.

Can I interest you in a flap or two?

jonsonshineAugust 6th 2008.

ha ha ha ha you're a very good writer honey I love this feature x

Sheryl CrowAugust 6th 2008.

I think the Monroe will find that this will be an albatross around their neck

GodwitAugust 6th 2008.

Are you a breast or a leg man?

Doctor NookieAugust 6th 2008.

Oh dear! Matron. That wil be what it means by "Coming Soon" in that picture....Mwhahahhaha!

DigAugust 6th 2008.

A fine establishment trying something new. I'm sure it will be a hit. I can't wait to have a pint in the new surroundings. What more could a man want from a pub? Friendly bar staff, Good ale and nice birds.

John BirdAugust 6th 2008.

They could end up before the beak if they aren't careful

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