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Everything posted by spanielking

  1. Well I return from my night away, what 2 days to pick, glorious sunshine. Dead chuffed. Set off 11:30ish from base camp, got car hand washed for £5, I thought that was quite reasonable? Noticed they had a "Dog wash" too. Anyhows, myself and my chubby hubby called into the Unicorn at billinge. Went there last year, again en route to Liverpool for a night away would you believe. It was nice from what I remembered, had smoked salmon last time. Got in, drink each, bowl of water for the dogs (Tap water, they don't do bottled), no food! Apparently they could not make it pay, throwing more away than they sold, all top produce. So Billinge has one of the north west's smartest drinking pubs! So that pissed on our chips. Soooooooooo, we asked where did food around, said next pub up road, turn right. It was called the Holts Head or Arms or something, typical pub really. Sat outside in the sun, we had a begutte each, waited an age for them, total shite. I had a sweet chilli chicken one, the chicken was that plastic chicken you get from take aways. Blluurrgghhh. Anyhow, we ate, walked the dogs in neighbouring woods, then carried onto Liverpool. Arrived at hotel (Malmaison) 3:30, room not ready, so we said OK, the girl suggested we have a drink outside, which we said was a good idea! It would be better if it was a free drink we said as our room was not ready!! No probs, bonus. So got into room eventually, got unpacked blah blah blah, had a walk around albert docks. Had a drink in Gusto, used to be Est est est, they were shite, I think they have re-branded them or sold them on?? Why do all the bars around there feel unclean?? Not really feeling the Albert docks. Went back to Hotel, called cab to Castle street where Room was. So after a myriad of suggestions, ended up in Room. Handful of people in, place was OK, typical trendy bar design. Yawn. I had ratatouille, other half had beef bourguignon. Both tasted fine, just portions were tiny. I know when I go some were upmarket, serving posh nosh that I will get small portions, but I was dissapointed with these. I had apple pie and custard with apple sorbet, himself had ice cream. Again, both fine, whole meal took about an hour and a bit to finish, 2 mains, 2 desserts plus drinks £70. Didnt feel like £70 worth. But we were there to have fun, so didnt really get too hung up on it. I think for lunch its fine, been to Room in Mancs, that was doable. But it being sunday night, options a bit limited. On way home (not finished yet!!) went via Formby, looked at all nice big houses, took dogs to beach, then stopped in Southport for lunch. Went to Owens, total wank. Avoid at all costs. Why is it that somewhere as nice as Southport, with all the money swilling about, has no where of merit to go?? (This is the point where I get bombarded with "Oh you should have tried this really nice bistro on...."). Nevermind. If anyone does know of anywhere in and around Southport, let me know!! I did have a good weekend, next time, will do my best to get to that place in Oxton!!! Your free to leave now. Regards Oliver PS Thanks for all your suggestions!!
  2. Is that really a piece of chicken shaped like an aileron?! ← I had to google 'Aileron', yes, it does a bit, not sure that was the intention. And, yes, I think it was on te way out of leeds I saw "Feed the goat". It all makes sense, kind of. I bet some geek has that tatooed on them! I like the thought someone has taken time to write 'Feed the goat' on a bridge! Beets Gouranga. Everyday is a school day!
  3. Finally got round to getting myself down to Anthonys today. Had a smashing lieu day in Leeds, got 7:15am train from Lancaster and sat back and enjoyed the ride. Saw a random bit of graffetti on the way that just read "Feed the goat". Yup, don't know what you can say to that! Got to the place early as I got fed up shopping, they were fine letting me in, table for one not exactly going to throw them off kilter. I arrived 12:30ish, was booked in for 1:30. The location is not how I imagined it, in fact, I walked right past it on my way to town from train station. The bar/lounge area is nice, typical modern, brown sofas/chairs. Got myself a glass of cloudy bay sparkling as I was on holiday!!! Got some olives, which I hate. They had 3 menus, Fixed lunch, ALC and tasting. ALC was £42 for 3 courses, tasting £60. I went for the lunch menu, which had 3/3/2 (plus cheeses) for £23.95. Then a waiter brought some pork scratchings in a little chip pan type thing, with some newspaper in. They were lush, only had a chance to have 2 before I was whisked away downstairs. Again, I thought it might have been bigger downstairs, I guess 30 covers?? Got settled in with my glass of coke (Cloudy bay had taken affect, was a bit light headed. I know, lightweight) First up, amuse: Sorry for crap photo. Tis Chicken wing, apple foam and pistachio. This ensemble was tiny. Massive plate, weeny bit of chicken wing, and 1, yes 1 pistachio. Tasted nice though!! The apple came through well. Just because you put it on a massive plate doestnt mean that we can't see its a speck of a portion. I know, its an amuse, but hey! Next, starter (Via bread): 3 butters, roasted, parmesan , and something else, I forget, ronnie corbet maybe? Jeruselm artichoke veloute, smoked haddock. Again, the plate arrived, saw 3 flakes of haddock, then waitress came and poured on veloute. There were some seeds (they are not cockroaches!) in there as well, not sure what they were. I'm shit. Twas nice, veloute especsh! Haddock was gone in 2 swipes. Hit my teeth twice on this course steering the spoon into my mouth, bloody fizz!! Main: Lamb, lamb sweetbreads, butternut squash puree, potatoes (those cubes at the back). Lamb was nice and pink, tasty, decent portion (at last!). Sweet. Ginger mousse, rhubard sorbet. Was more like a parfait, the mousse. Thought it might be a bit gingery, but was quite restrained. The rhubarb itself was nice and tender, the sorbet was fine. Overall, was a bit underwhelmed. Was really looking for some fireworks, like we saw on GBM, it was a quite restrained. I know I was going on a fixed price menu, but most people that were there (6 others, plus a table of 4 when I left, not bad for a tues lunch) were on the same menu. As I sat there, it did not strike me as a 'destination'. The food was very good, perhaps he has reined in the millions of ingredients per dish (the bee pollen dish was on the ALC I saw). If your in/near leeds, of course go, it is good, it just didnt blow me away. I did enjoy myself, perhaps I need to go again proper ALC/tasting sometime. So there, stick that in your pipe and smoke it!!! PS Soz if a bit long!
  4. Thanks Marc, will give it a go if I can get in. It's just up road from where I am staying as far as I can see.
  5. Thanks for all your suggestions people. My night away is fast approaching. I will let you know how I get on, I think I will just see where the night takes me, so to speak! It's not always the best way, I'm sure I won't starve though! Might pop into the Unicorn at billinge on the way down, fill up there. Am def up for Fraiche if that gets rolling too! S'later.
  6. Well, if I claim L'Enclume. theres 1 I have been to. woop! Are'nt list bollocks. I guess they make a good reference point, but like everything, its purely subjective. PS Sorry if I was being a bit blonde and not linking the list with the restaurant mag.
  7. Whats the criteria they are judged on anyhow?? Looking at the list, I have not been to a single one!! Looks similar to the Restaurant magazine one they do each year.
  8. Just to clarify, the restraunt Adey went to was in the new Beetham tower near the docks, not the old radio tower. Anyone who has been up the one in Deansgate, Manchester, its like that, but in Liverpool!
  9. Thanks people. Adey, I thought it would be style over substance, although the 'style' looks dead corporate to me. They could have made it a bit moer glam. I think Jan Moir said always avoid restaurants in towers!! But thanks for the report. People take note, never plan a night away on a sunday!!
  10. Sorry marc, yes the good people of Fraiche are opening Sundays, just not the onetime I am in the area. Always the way! I will endeavour to get down and eat your lovely looking and sounding food! I saw the thread on Liverpool, and knew of some mentioned places, again not sure if they will be open. Got a cheap night away at Malmaison, have stayed before and ate there last time, but it was not spectacular. So my quest goes on, I might just wander round and see what I find, just thought if someone had a bit of local knowledge they could point me in the way of somewhere. Spanks.
  11. Yo. I am having a sunday night away in Liverpool, as you do, and I am after recommendations for somewhere to go for dinner. I was going to try Fraiche, as they were threatening to open on a sunday, but alas, they are not So I am after somewhere good to go as its for my other halfs belated birthday!! I don't mind a good curry/chinese/thai. I know its a bit of a bad night to try and get a table anywhere, as everywhere shuts! Anyone know if the new Panoramic place opens on a sunday night?? OOORRRRRRR...... I am travelling south from Lancaster, so if there is anywhere I could stop for a decent lunch en route? Thanks in advance peeps!!!!
  12. Sounds like you had a great time. Next time a outing is planned, I will def try and make it!! I must warn you I am not the heaviest of drinkers, but the pub 'tour' sounded good. So will it be Mancs next time again, or somewhere else in a vague NW area type place thingamy??
  13. How did the Egulleteer's lunch go in manchester??
  14. The room prices look a bit Perhaps Heston could open a Little Chef in there??
  15. Eric and Lionel at Inn at Whitewell. They are def not spoilt! Bloody useless the pair of them.
  16. Now then peeps. Had a extra day off today so I thought I would come down to Brum and check out Purnells, as you do. First off, I drove. I have been planning the trip for about 6 weeks, originally I was going to let the train take the strain, enjoy the views etc. But, as it turns out, it was cheaper for me to drive and park than to take the train. An advance day return, from Lancaster, best offer, £50!! 1 full tank of petrol in my fiesta and couple hours parking £34, and did it in two hours each way!! I came accross Purnells when I was looking for somewhere to take my Gran out when I saw her a couple of weeks ago. In the end went to Mallory Court (was ok), but really wanted to check this place out. Its quite a nice place inside, I thought it might be a bit echoey looking at the website, but was nice and warm inside. Its smart, modern without being trendy, if you get what I mean. I liked it. I went ALC, as I thought I might get the odd amuse/pre dessert thrown in. I got a amuse of Potato veloute with rosemary oil. Nice! To start I had Poached egg yolk - smoked haddock milk foam - cornflakes - curry oil. I found it a bit sickly, could just be me. Was tasty though. Then had Duck - liquorice - tamarind - rocket - black rice which was most plesant. The duck was done medium rare, spot on. No photo as I felt a geek sneaking photos of my food. And to finish had Blackberry parfait - bay leaf custard - apple sorbet - glazed apples. Quite refreshing, the bay leaf custard worked well, it was quite thick, more of a paste. In the end only got the amuse, so prob could have gone with the set lunch, but I thought what the hell. 3 Courses plus a coke and cranberry juice (I was driving remember!! Doh) £48. I was the only one there to start with, I thought 'here we go', a batallion of staff running round after me. But it filled up towards the end. They had music on too, which was great. It breaks up the silence. I hate eating in hushed reverie. Def recommend it. But go for set lunch as its 3 courses £18.95, i'll do that next time. set lunch was 2/2/2 ALC 4/4/4 choices. Service was good, friendly french maitre'd. Crap hand wash in loo. Olives for canapes, i hate olives. It would be good to know what others think?? Ummm, thats all! Oliver
  17. I tried to find the sprad eagle once, got lost, and ran out of time, so had lunch in some inbred yocal place where everyone looked at you funny. I had a panini, thought they coudnt go too wrong with that!! Went to Inn at whitewell about a year and a half ago, stayed the night, room was ace. They let dogs in too, so my 2 whippets, Eric and Lionel came along. Had a evening meal in the restaurant. Cant rember much, had venison, v chewey. so much so I had to excuse myself and go spit out a mouthful in the gents. Service at breakfast was a bit shit. But it was a nice night away, all in £200ish for 2 (plus two whippets!) If I'm down that way, I'll pop in for a drink, its pricey, but I like the place. Its always heaving, middle of nowhere and always busy? I have not eaten there sice I stayed, menu aint that exciting really. They only do 1 sitting for sunday lunch which is odd. The lower buck at waddington does nice chips!!
  18. Adey, what were your thoughts on White bull, is it worth a trip? It doesnt look to earth shattering. Ever been to weezos in Clitheroe?? Thats on my list to try. Went to Cartford Inn today http://www.thecartfordinn.co.uk/ Twas OK, staff fecking useless. Usual modern pub menu, middle of nowhere, not rushing back. Was filling up with familys and their offspring, so we left. Why are buggies so massive these days?? Just had a sarnie and fries, as I said, was OK, I'm still alive. Am of to Birmingham to go to Purnells 2moz, can't wait. I have Wednesday off aswell!! Woop!!!
  19. I went to the Sparling about a month ago, though it was excellent, a bit trendier(ish) than 3 fishes/highwaymen. I had a ham pressing with a chutney, mmmmmmmmm, twas nice! Good buzz about the place. The chef, warwick, has brought one or two members of staff with him frount of house, service was good. Prices middle of the road, 3 courses 1 bottle wine, some drinks £70 for 2 I think it was?? Any reports from Stanley House since Warick left?? I would love to take some friends, but don't want it to be crap. I went last septermber and it was reallygood. Lounge was crap though, its a bit high camp, so is the restaurant, but its fun. The whole place is a bit neauveau riche!! But the food was good. The lounge at Northcote is a bit stiff. They have done the bedrooms up really smart, the dining room is nice, apart from those minging spot lamp things, shame about the lounge, its very 'Edwardian', perhaps thats what they are after. Must check out White bull! I have passed that Indian as well. A wrok collegue says that You and Yu, the chinese on the way to Clitheroe is good. Thanks for starting a topic I can relate to. And its good to show people what us 'Northeners' can offer.
  20. Up my neck of the woods! I have been to Highwayman, and 3 fishes, I find them in that strange no mans land, not a pub, not a restaurant. And the whole order and pay at a paypoint thing is stupid, espc at those prices!! The menu doesnt change alot either. They are both cashcows for Northcote, but I guess it makes sense. Can't wait for your report on Northcote, its fab there. I'm not familiar with the White Bull though?? I will watch this space!
  21. When I went I was the only one there as well, but it was a wet January Monday, hardly peak time!! But I am glad I went. Mancs posse, any news on the Elliott, does anyone know where it is opening?? And I am thinking of sacking off the fancy dress, as its going to be £40 for an outfit that I will wear once, and be a scrooge and go in civies! It will be, oooh, 6 weeks until the next engagement/leaving/new baby/siamese twin separation party, as per in fancy dress!! I will try harder to attend next time.shame, I would have looked hot in the pink panther costume
  22. I'm not going to be able to make it to the Modern shindig. I am in Birmingham on the Tues, going to try Purnell's, then its a staff do on the Sunday, its fancy dress (What is it with girls and fancydress?? Bloody women!). I can't decide between Pink Panther of Spongebob Squarepants?? Decsions! So thinking about £££ I hope to meet you guys soon, I'm sure it wont be long till we get the urge again! I expect a full disclosure on here though!! Have a good time Oliver
  23. That looks great. I think I would take the pith out of you for taking photos too But thanks for taking the trouble!!! It is def on my to do list this year. Its just on that fine line for being too far to go for a round trip meal for me, but if I can persuade other half to have another night out in Liverpool, then its game on! How many covers does it seat?
  24. Yay, can I come to your Northern shindig if it gets organised and depending when it is???? I'm a bit broke at the mo though, bit like most people, I have promised to take my Gran to Mallory Court next week, I'd say I'd pay. Doh!!!!
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