A WORCESTER city pub, known as a friendly watering hole by its long-standing regulars, has introduced a taste of the Mediterranean.

The Saracen’s Head in the Tything, has installed a clay pizza oven in the covered outdoor seating area and offers a range of inexpensive traditionally cooked pizzas.

Chef Dan Bennett said the kitchen space at the pub is very small and they wanted to offer customers something different. “There are a lot of places doing burgers but not many with a pizza oven. We had the opportunity to get one and we went for it,” he said.

“We haven’t done too much food before so to get the oven is really exciting. We are offering the popular range of pizzas but cooked in a traditional Italian way. It is definitely the best way of cooking them. They do taste great.”

The pub owners and staff even cooked a Christmas dinner in the pizza oven. “The turkey was amazing. The colour on the turkey was amazing and it had that little bit of a smoky flavour. The possibilities are endless.”

Dan said the food side of the business is picking up as a result of installing the oven. It is now offering discounts to students and emergency workers like NHS staff, police and fire service employees.

The Saracen’s Head was taken on by Sarah Hardwick and a silent partner in April 2015 after the previous owners closed it due to the cost of running the pub.

Sarah had been a barmaid at the pub for seven years while studying at the University of Worcester and knew the ropes of running it.

Her priorities were to keep a friendly atmosphere, host darts and skittles matches and retain a sports bar where customers can watch high profile sporting events. Even two years ago she had an ambition to introduce a food menu.