Favourite Tables

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Midsummer House

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Well what can I say other than this was a magical evening and emphasised the reason why Midsummer House is my favourite Michelin Star restaurant. Such a fantastic warm and friendly welcome on our arrival that made us feel right at home straight away.

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We were first served a lovely homemade Gin & Tonic which was lovely. We decided to have the 8 Course Tasting Menu to which we were asked if we’d like to see the Menu or be surprised we decided to be surprised. So firstly the Amuse Bouches were a delight before moving to the first course a Pumpkin Veloute then Braised Pork Knuckle & Raclette Cheese simply stunning followed by a fantastic Scallop dish

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Then came the signature course of Roast Quail with Shallot Purée & Sour Dough simply Devine then came a delightful Monkfish course then I have to say my favourite course which was Venison accompanied by amazing Venison sausage rolls

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Before Dessert we chose to have a Cheese course and they had the most wonderful Cheese trolley

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Now on to my favourite part of any meal Desserts and both were fantastic firstly the Aerated Pear with Blueberry then the Passion Fruit,Yoghurt Sorbet & Dark chocolate then when you think you can’t eat anymore outcome the treats some amazing Doughnuts and Chocolates.

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I would like to thank the Sommelier for a fantastic selection of matching wines that just went perfectly with every course also to every member of staff who’s service was exceptional. I hope that Midsummer House soon gets a third Michelin Star because based on this visit they certainly deserve them.

The Palomar

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Had been meaning to visit The Palomar restaurant for a while now to try a new type of cuisine from the heart of Jerusalem and I have to say I’m very glad to have done so.

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It’s a small but very friendly place as you walk in they have a walk in service where you can sit at the counter and watch the chefs work but we were lead through to the dining area at the back which was very nice & cozy. Our waitress Olge was excellent asking us if we’d been before then took us through the menu advising us of how many courses from each section we should order.

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We started with the Rip & Dip section where we had the most amazing Bread & dips along with Fish Falafel. We then had the special of the day which was a lovely dish that included White Crab Meat just stunning then onto the larger of the sharing menu dishes to which we had the amazing Octo-Hummus and the fantastic Jerusalem Mix with a side order of Josperised Aubergine plus a Fattoush Salad.

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All the dishes have this delicate charcoal,nutty and slightly creamy texture but taste delicious Now on to my favourite course of any meal Dessert and we weren’t let down in anyway we decided to go for the sharing dessert called a Jerusalem Mess which was fantastic but me being me I couldn’t settle for that and when I saw they had a Chocolate Fondue with Peanut Brittle I couldn’t resist and I’m so glad I didn’t it was gorgeous.

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Definitely looking forward to returning soon and I would highly recommend this restaurant

 

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The Artichoke Restaurant – Amersham

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This was the first time we’ve been here for an evening and what an excellent dining experience it was . A very warm and friendly greeting on arrival then escorted to our table to let the festivities begin. We decided to go for the Tasting Menu with matching Wines and I have to say it was heaven.

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Starting with a fantastic Trout dish then an amazing Crab Thermidor followed by a delightful Artichoke dish and stunning Cod course then on to the main courses and my highlight a glorious Venison with orange curd and the braised Beef which was very rich .

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The matching wines were a delight coming from Italy,Hungary,Austria,South Africa and France. Now to dessert a fabulous Poached Pear Galette and a Cambridge Cream & Rhubbarb .

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All in all it was truly a fantastic evening which was made even better due to the great warm and excellent service from every member of staff . So if it’s a fantastic evening with amazing food and wine in a great little town then take a trip to Amersham and visit this restaurant. I’m already looking forward to returning in June

 

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Haywards

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Couldn’t think of a better way to end the year than visiting our favourite local restaurant Haywards. This was our 21st visit of the year and the food & service was consistently as good as always .

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If you like fine dining but don’t want to go into London then this is the place for you. The restaurant serves excellent European Cuisine and also has great Wines to match your food . The restaurant has a nice friendly atmosphere and is a great place for couples or groups and can host bigger parties in the Stable

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#epping #Essex #restaurant

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Mash London

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I am very keen to eat steak if it is good quality. Mash London does not just deliver the quality, but also the option of meat from different countries (see website for more information) in a lovely atmosphere that reminds me of the setting of the Restaurant of the Titanic.

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I can never get tired of a really quality made steak, that is why I keep coming back. Mash London, Steakhouse with a Danish twist my regular dinner location that I recommend.

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Indian Summer

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Authentic regional cooking with a mix of  traditional family recipes passed down through the generations and new creations with a modern gastro twist.

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The menus features popular Mumbai street foods such as the Bhel Puri – a tasty  snack of puffed rice, gram flour sticks with potatoes,  chickpeas, tomatoes and red onions.

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My main of Indian Summer Nariyali Swordfish steak in a coconut, chilli, mint & yoghurt marinade served with roasted fennel potatoes, mixed salad and cumin raita was outstanding.  This was followed by an excellent Chilli & Chocolate Sponge with vanilla ice cream Mango Bruleé with shortbread .

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On a different planet to the Bangladeshi fast food curry houses that populate every high street in the UK which serve ersatz Indian foods, which their chefs would never eat at home.

 

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Giggling Squid

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Hard to fault.  Great location.  Smart, stylish, modern decor. Welcoming staff.  Efficient service and the best Thai food to be had anywhere in Essex.

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Lunch times offer “Thai tapas”, which are great value and allow for sampling several small dishes, which are ideal for sharing.  If, like me you struggle to choose from the array of tasty sounding options, they off “big plate” sets, with a  complete meal, are a good choice.  They also allow for prompt service if you need to get back to work inside an hour.

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Although all the food is cooked on site from fresh, we’re assured.   You only have to taste it, to know.

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The evening offers more extensive options.  The red curry is, in my opinion, is unsurpassed, although the signature squid dish is it’s rival.  The tempura vegetables are sweet and succulent in a light crispy batter.

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Riverport Grill – St. Ives

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We visited this bistro style restaurant for my son’s 17th birthday and were pleasantly surprised by this little ‘gem’ . This cosy restaurant is located  very near to the River Nene, it’s simple yet classy interior decor  is cleverly lit to give an intimate feel without making the menu’s unreadable.

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The menu although not vast  offers a good selection of  varied and interesting food  plus the  daily specials board with some rarer and unusual choices.

Portions are not huge but sufficient and satisfying  ( they also have a children’s menu) the main courses were well presented and some of the most flavoursome tasted in this area for a long while and the desserts were simply scrumptious !

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I chose the Greek pulled lamb ,feta and cucumber bun which came with a choice of skinny fried or chips – the chunky type which is what I opted for and it had a side of shredded vegetables, it was delicious! Two other members also opted for other types from the many choices of  filled buns and were equally impressed , the cost for my main course was  a very reasonable  £8.50 and worth every penny !

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The restaurant is obviously very popular,  we had booked our table in advance but whilst there we saw many turned away it was completely fully booked for the evening -so  I highly recommend you book in advance.

A good experience , lovely food , relaxing ambience, we shall return  !

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The Beacon

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There is something lovely about eating at The Beacon in Tunbridge Wells

Whether it’s looking over the fine grounds ( 17 acres apparently ) from the terrace or sitting near the Bar with the warmth of the fire

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The staff were attentive and yet not overly fussy , the food was served promptly yet I didn’t feel rushed and there was a good buzz, it wreaked of a place that had a lot of attention to detail , but wasn’t formal or stuffy

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My wife had a lovely ricotta stuffed Courgette Spaghetti , and I had a 28 day aged Stirloin with Chips , delicious , just pink enough !

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I followed  it up with a Dark chocolate tart with honeycomb , lovely!

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It was good to catch up with Dave , the general manager , who explained a great deal about the heritage and the refurbishment that has made it the go to venue in Tunbridge Wells and it’s environs

All I would ask to improve we’re longer summer days , so we could have enjoyed the views from the Terrace for longer

I hope they continue to improve , it was a lovely , reasonable treat for my wife and I on our anniversary

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Gurkha One

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Earlier this year we had the pleasure of trying out the top rated restaurant in Nottingham – Gurkha One.

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As we went quite late there were only a couple of other diners in.
We were seated and given menus. Our first surprise was that the prices were much higher than those advertised on the website. I can only assume that the website hasn’t been updated or they are the takeaway prices (we are talking about £3 cheaper for a main meal onlne).
Regardless, we ordered a couple of poppadoms. These came with mango chutney, onion salad and mint yogurt. The mango had quite a kick to it which wasn’t well received by a certain non-spice eater at the table!
Drinks prices were very high so I ordered a small Cobra, bottled, at £3 for 330ml.
For mains I went for a vegetable madras with pilau rice. The others went for vegetable vindaloo and saag aloo.

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The staff here are very friendly and chatty! The owner was telling us about the history of the restaurant, it has only been open since November and got to the top of Tripadvisor reviews by March after a quiet few months. He told us how they prepare everything from scratch in the kitchen and how that differs from most places.
On trying my madras (which came out very promptly) I could instantly tell this was like no other I had tasted! It had the best flavour, best texture and was all round the best curry I have ever had (and believe me, I have had A LOT). The heat level slowly crept up on me and was never too intense, it was perfect. The rice was wonderful. Colourful and spot on. The portions were very good too, I didn’t quite manage to finish mine!
The vegetable vindaloo was also described as the best to date.
Our only issue was with the saag aloo. As we asked for it to be very mild and this couldn’t be done. The way they do their spinach is using a blender which makes the meal look a bit grim in presentation, but it does taste very good (to those of us accustomed to heat!) The owner was very apologetic and took the dish back to re-make. Unfortunately this didn’t make a difference and the only solution was to provide Greek yogurt with the meal. The price of the meal was deducted from the final bill which was very considerate of them.
The owner was keen to know where we’d heard about them and to share their story which was nice. Although I think he was slightly distracted with the saag aloo situation as he forgot to provide my glass for the water, which was definitely needed by that point

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We received hot towels when we had finished, which were actually very, very hot. With the bill we got mints and definitely lots of smiles!
Overall, this place is a great little restaurant.
If you are in the area and want to try Indian food at its best, and are willing to pay that little bit more for the experience, look no further!
Rating 4/5

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