Tag Archives: restaurants

Fit for a King…

4

Stunning smoked trout..

A new entry into the best kept secrets archive this week from Evershot, half way between Dorchester, Dorset and Yeovil, Somerset, conveniently located just off the A37.

The George Albert Hotel offers in their words ‘definitely more than just a great night’s sleep’ and I would have to wholeheartedly agree given the gem that is the Kings Restaurant hidden within.

Presenting the pictured fillet of smoked trout, smoked salmon mousse, potato salad, horseradish cream, finished with all the panache you would come to expect from the standard of the AA rosette holding Kings Restaurant.

Definitely worth a pit stop if you are travelling via the A37.

George Albert Hotel (Kings Restaurant)

Wardon Hill

Evershot

Nr Dorchester

Dorset DT2 9PW

http://gahotel.co.uk/

Advertisements

‘A Confident Start’ – No 34 at the Orchid

1

1000 Leaves of Crab..

A restaurant review for a new addition to the Bournemouth dining scene this week. No 34 at the Orchid Hotel packages up a solid re-branding of the hotel and a very impressive dining offering for guests, locals and visitors alike.

Hidden away on Gervis Road, the restaurant is on the left as you enter the newly refurbished hotel. Through modern, sophisticated glass doors we were taken with a friendly welcome into a wonderfully cool and intimate dining area that seemed to snake around the building. This gives the feeling of more private dining as despite plenty of seating, there are some individual areas with no more than 10 covers within. Bread and olives, although a standard partner to accompany a nice aperitif, consisted of a particularly enjoyable selection at No 34, kicking off the evening in relaxed but impressive fashion.

1000 leaves of crab was enjoyed by our whole table, Dorset Crab with layers of guacamole, fresh tomato and vanilla oil. A really refreshing starter with all the indulgence you would expect from beautifully dressed crab. Rich crab with light partners on the plate, a lovely colourful plate of food.

2

Chef’s signature of Biarritz..

Whilst the table also enjoyed a fantastic duck breast dish, our featured pick had to be the chef’s signature hake. Bayonne ham topped a faultless piece of pan fried hake, finished with a typically melt in the mouth basquaise style concoction. Soft fish, crispy skin, lip smacking ham and a soft, moreish medley of vegetables.

Dessert offered up a trio of chocolate delights, a very trendy blackcurrant and hibiscus cheesecake, a classic tarte tatin served with salted caramel ice cream and another top drawer cheeseboard for Dorset.

We had a really enjoyable evening, very intimate with attentive service.  We will definitely return and hope No 34 continues as they have started, with a clearly skillful French chef cooking the food he knows and loves. Very promising indeed.

Funky Fusion To Share…

Soft, sweet and sticky octopus

A new entry into the best kept secrets archive this week from Spitalfields twix Whitechapel.  The nearest tube station to this London hidden gem is Aldgate East.

Yuu Kitchen is the ultimate relaxed, trendy dining experience for South East Asian fusion cuisine, sharing style.  Picking 3-4 dishes per person to share opens up incredible combinations from soft shell crab bao buns to wok fried crispy kale with shitake mushrooms.  The stunning BBQ octopus is one not to miss.  Powerful ginger and soy umami flavours working wonderfully with the soft and sweet octopus.

Funky cocktails, crisp Asian lagers and an excellent selection of world wines pair very nicely with the relaxed but sophisticated food offer.

A unique dining experience for me, and one I could get very used to.

Yuu Kitchen

29 Commercial Street

London E1 6NE

http://www.yuukitchen.com/

‘Edinburgh’s prestige wines’ – Purslane

IMG-20170604-WA0011

Unique flavour combinations..

This week brings an exciting take on one of the most impressive dining experiences in recent memory.  The overall wine, food and service as a package was wonderful.  Inspired by a previous visit to ‘Purslane’ in Cheltenham, when sampling the Edinburgh dining scene, a visit to the completely unrelated namesake in the trendy Stockbridge area of Edinburgh seemed an obvious choice.

The opportunity to sample ‘premium wines’ was too good to turn down here.  It’s a fantastic way to get to grips with world class wines without paying the premium of an entire bottle.  Paired wonderfully with the 7 course tasting menu option, we were blown away by two wines and the port selection in particular and the entire evening guided by our wonderful server and sommelier extraordinaire, Alex.  Purslane is a small, intimate restaurant with approximately 20 covers, a relaxed atmosphere but fine dining quality food on offer.

Kicking off with celeriac veloute, paired with a crisp glass of Delamotte Brut Champagne, a swirl of rapeseed oil will have been a familiar site from last week’s kitchen hero entry.  Everything you want from an amuse bouche, this one.

The first starter of seared scallops with marmalade, pomegranate and carrot puree was very clever.  I have served scallops at home with chilli jam before but the bitter marmalade goes very nicely with sweet scallops and carrot.  The fresh pomegranate seeds cut right through the dish to finish cleanly.

IMG-20170604-WA0001

Pork, black pudding and apple..but not as you know it..

Our first main course, combining pork, black pudding, celariac and apple, each individual element combining for a cuddle on a plate.  Such hearty flavours but executed in a really refined way.  Small apple balls cut into the shape of a whole fruit, very clever.

IMG-20170604-WA0012

How crispy can you go?

Crispy skinned sea bream, mussels and a mussel and saffron veloute was brought to life by possibly our favourite wine of the evening.  A stunning Sauvignon Gris from Chile.  Our first experience of the less common and more mysterious relation of the widely available Sauvignon Blanc, this 2012 variety from Casa Marin was clean finishing but not before wonderful fresh and smoky oak flavours backed up by floral and spicy aromas.

IMG-20170604-WA0013

No yorkshire pud needed here..

Sunday afternoon roast rolled up into one next, with roast beef rump, fondant potatoes, tenderstem broccoli and a rich but tart oxtail and red wine jus.  A Spanish red with 100% tempranillo grapes swept you along beautifully with this one.

IMG-20170604-WA0000

Bakewell tart, Mr Kipling eat your heart out..

Cheese before pre-dessert, with our 1998 late bottled vintage port washing incredibly well with a smashing selection.  A recommendation for Epoisse if you can find it, a strong creamy cheese much like my favourite french cheese Reblochon.  Pre dessert and a twist on classic bakewell flavours with poached apricot was a unique addition to a tasting menu.

IMG-20170604-WA0014

Another fresh orange and chocolate combo..move aside terry..

Finishing with chocolate mousse, with orange, lemon balm and cardamon brulee, it was a truly incredible evening of food in a relaxed environment.  A huge thank you to Alex who went the extra mile for us with wine and food explanation in a relaxed way.  Casual fine dining may sound like an oxymoron, but for me it absolutely sums up this smashing little restaurant.  A must visit when in Edinburgh.

Catch of the day…

20170530_214241

The ultimate seafood platter..

A new addition to the best kept secrets archive this week, with a recommendation for a fresh seafood selection to die for.  The Seafood Platter, Beer is a quaint pub with access to the finest, freshly caught seafood.  A really relaxed ‘pub grub’ atmosphere is blown totally out of the water by the special sea food menu.

Beer is a superb little seaside fishing village, well worth visiting for the wonderful coastal walks and beautiful cove.

The pictured ultimate platter needs to be ordered when booking a table to ensure you do not miss out all of the elements, including tiger prawns, crab, mussels, scallops, oysters and cockles.  Stunning and served simply with lemon, bread, butter and aioli.

Sometimes you have to look into the unexpected to find incredible food.

The Seafood Platter

Fore Street

Beer

Devon

‘25 mile menu of magic’ – The Pig part three

BeFunky Collage

Quirky and indulgent..

Welcome to the final feature on The Pig, taking a look at the main event, an experience of the 25 mile menu evening service.

A dining experience at the Pig can only start with a trip to the bar or one of the comfortable lounges, to sample local ciders, a cocktail or perhaps a gin and tonic from the stunning selection of gins from far and wide.  Moving into the dining room, which is almost green house themed, plants growing naturally and mix and match furniture – our starter choices kicked off in style.  A smashing rich terrine with mustard pickle, and home smoked salmon served simply.  Really simple, fresh ingredients being used in absolutely the right way.

BeFunky Collage 2

Fresh, rich, rustic..

Main course took comfort food to the next level, pork escalope with crispy chorizo and greens, and a lovely piece of soft and sweet hake with crispy clams.  The staff guided us wonderfully through the menu and helped select a superb Italian white wine which was perfect with all our food selections for the evening.

BeFunky Collage 3.jpg

Comfort food on another level..

Custard donuts with a white chocolate dipping sauce is the featured picture on this week’s blog entry.  Need I really say more about that combination?  Wonderfully light donuts though and certainly not as heavy as it sounds.  And how about rhubarb cheesecake and sorbet, a rhubarb lover’s dream!

IMG-20170523-WA0007

Attention rhubarb lovers..

Finishing with an espresso martini each, a brilliant evening of food at the Pig certainly didn’t disappoint.  A wonderful stay with a proper garden to plate experience.  Highly recommended for an indulgent but relaxed, cosy and rustic break.

 

‘25 mile menu of magic’ – The Pig part two

20170504_145809

Foraging through the walled gardens..

Welcome back to my May feature on The Pig.  This week, we venture outside the hotel to take a look around at how garden arrives at plate with some foraging, before a sneak peak at some Piggy Nibbles.

The gardens at The Pig have an extensive selection of veg and herbs, driving the on site foragers to hop through ingredients as the seasons change and the menu organically evolves.  Some rainbow chard ready to pick, some starting to sprout, you get a real sense of menu planning taking place in and around what is available on site.  As you walk around you can picture dishes on the restaurant menu building bit by bit.  Spotting rhubarb and seeing it appear among the evening desserts is really quite something.

BeFunky Collage 3

Rainbow chard, elephant garlic, chives, the gardens continue to grow at the Pig!

Back into the kitchen for a feature of the 25 mile menu – piggy nibbles.  Homemade pork scratchings are often on offer, alongside these beauties below.  ‘Brock Eggs’, a stunning take on a scotch egg, runny yolk included of course.  Homemade sausage rolls are a rare treat in our house, so it was lovely to sample The Pig’s effort – comfort food is clearly taken to the next level.

20170504_192942

The Pig’s fabulous ‘piggy nibbles’

Next week’s final part three will jump back into the dining experience for a full take on the 25 mile menu.

%d bloggers like this: