I am a little late in posting this blog as it has been a week in the pipeline but it’s about food, and everyone appreciates food so it’s all good right?
Last week my mum celebrated a pretty significant birthday (I won’t reveal her age as I don’t think she’d appreciate it but she looks damn good for it, I’ll tell you that!) and as is traditional with a birthday in my family we went out for dinner.
When it comes to arranging a venue for food, the conversation is always the same. Someone suggests Montaz (which, by the way, is always a good option) and the birthday person says “no we always go there, I want to go somewhere different.” And so ensues a conversation where we name every gastro-pub in the area trying to find somewhere nice, with a good ambience and a menu that everyone will eat something from. It’s a piece of work I tell you.
Finally, mum suggested Bedford Lodge Hotel. We looked at the menu and it suited everyone- miracle! So off we went last week to the Squires Restaurant in the hotel.
Mum loved it, the atmosphere was lovely and the staff were ever so attentive and friendly. They took our coats and brought us wine, so no complaints here!
My brother had booked the table and mentioned that I have a nut allergy and he is intolerant to milk and they took this so seriously- I always highly commend a restaurant who take note of my allergy. As daft as it sounds, there are so many places that I feel like I am playing a bit of peanut roulette, so it was nice to know they had the situation firmly under control. So much so that they offered my brother an English muffin for his burger instead of the advertised brioche bun because it had a small amount of dairy in it ( he assured them this was fine and they were still sceptical). So they won major, nut and dairy free, brownie points here.
They have two menus in the restaurant, one being the a la carte and one being the bar menu. The a la carte is as you would expect- everything is a confit with a side of jus and other made up words you would find on Masterchef. The bar menu had a range of dishes, the usual things like burgers and steaks and pies etc, but the quality of food was so, so good.
We sat down and were immediately served with fresh bread and butter- a selection of garlic and herb white bread, and a brown bread with tomato, pumpkin seeds and paprika.
Having ordered our meals, an amuse bouche arrived (I am not posh so have never been anywhere where this is a thing, so this was great.) A piece of mini scotch egg, made with a quails egg and served with mayonnaise. It was delicious.
For my starter, I pushed the boat out and opted for mussels in garlic and white wine sauce which were lovely, but then I am a big fan of mussels. They were available as a starter or a main so I went for the starter, not realising that both options came with fries- odd for a starter, I thought, and I had already ordered chips with my main so I gave most of these away (I’m not totally insane. I still dipped some in the sauce).
For the main event I plumped for a rib eye steak. Yes yes I am a bit of a man and I like my beer cold and my steak rare, but there it is. I regret nothing. It was served with chunky chips and rocket and I got a peppercorn sauce on the side.
To drink, mum and I shared a bottle of Muscadet, because what is a birthday without wine?
Once we were all suitably stuffed we were sat chatting around the table and I noticed the waitress talking behind her hand to another waiter. I knew that she was not going to be saying anything rude about us as she was so genuine and friendly. She walked away and a short time later she came out with a plate of mini desserts surrounded by a swirl of chocolate sauce and ‘Happy Birthday’ written in it too and presented this to mum. Mum was chuffed to buttons I could tell. What a great and thoughtful end to our meal. I had mentioned when we arrived that we were celebrating a birthday so it was so sweet that she had arranged this.
I managed to take a couple of sneaky photos but it is not the sort of place where instagramming your dinner is the done thing, so apologies for the lack of tempting food photos and they probably aren’t quite the quality I would like.
The food, staff and restaurant itself were incredible. I had no doubts that it would be anything else, but I would highly recommend it.
Bye for now