Well, we decided to eat out on New Year’s Day. We did not plan for it and so was just spontaneous, or as the young people call this as ‘random’.
So my other half phoned and I was amazed that we could get a table in Ashfields. Ashfields has a good reputation and sometimes it is difficult to get a table if we do not book a few weeks in advance. We had been to the restaurant before. We heard about it, and the people who recommended it said that it was good.
For the several visits that we were there, I think we were influenced by the recommendations and our expectations were high. However, it did not live up to our expectation. That is why I need to explain about our expectation. Customer expectation is the key to customer satisfaction. The food was average for the few times we were there.
This time, however, the food was really good.
When we went in the restaurant, it was busy. The staff were quick and polite. We ordered our drinks and we were ushered to our table not long after our orders were taken. However, the table that we had was quite cold and it was compounded by the staff not shutting the door to the stairs. A quick word with the waitress sorted that out.
For starters, I ordered the Carpaccio of Pineapple & Citrus Fruits with Fruit Sorbet as I was trying to control my calorie intake. And to make sure I have enough room for the dessert. Well, I always try as I had eaten so much over Christmas. I am not one who gives up easily, ha-ha! The pineapple came in a few slices topped with tangerine segments ( and one other type – I am not sure what it was) and complimented by the fruit sorbet. The pineapple was a bit unripe. Now, I must explain this… as it is important. You see, people who come from the tropics are used to eating really ripe pineapples as it like getting it from your own backyard. So I am used to eating very ripe pineapples. In fact, over here, I buy the pineapples ( especially if it is in offer like 2 for £1 ) and keep it for several days before consuming it. So my standard and the local peoples’ standard of ripeness differ, and I accept that. The citrus segments were not that sweet and all goes well with the sweet sorbet.
My other half ordered the .. what else?.. the McSweens Haggis with Neeps and Tatties and Whisky Gravy, he being a Scots. He enjoyed the haggis and that says a lot about the dish.
Sorry, I did not take photos of the starters as we were too distracted by the food!
My main was the Slow Cooked Confit of Duck Leg, on Braised Red Cabbage with Spiced Oranges. It was a generous portion comprising 2 duck legs, slowly cooked and the skin was crispy and the fat had drained from the skin. So this suited me fine as it wasn’t fatty. However, I was not sure where the fat went. They probably discarded it.
The braised red cabbage with spiced oranges was sweet and tangy. However, I could not detect much of the citrus flavour and I though it was braised with cranberries. The tartness of the red cabbage cuts through the strong flavour and the fat ( not that much) of the duck. The sweetness of the cabbage contrasted well with the savoury duck. The flavours worked.
My hubby had Rich Venison Casserole with Root Vegetables & Spring Onion Mash for his mains and he commented that it was good. The mains came with boiled vegetables as well as blanched brussels sprouts fried with bacon. The sprouts were very well done, not bitter or dry. The roast potatoes and the roast parsnip were very well done as well – crunchy on the outside and fluffy on the inside.
Then we ordered the dessert: Italian Panettone Bread & Butter Pudding, Sweet Marsala Wine Mascarpone for me, and Selection of Luxury Ice Creams for him. I like bread and butter pudding as I like warm puddings. The pudding was full of citrus flavour as there were dried mixed peels. It was topped up with a generous portion of mascarpone cheese flavoured with marsala wine.
Italian panettone bread & butter pudding, sweet Marsala wine mascarpone. A lovely tangy pudding that tastes great with the mascarpone and fruit coulis. The ice creams were great. He had it plain with nothing on. We finished the meal with coffee.
The price was reasonable: Adults £36.95. Children (4-12 years) £29.95. The whole bill came up to £93.80 including drinks.
This time the food was really good and the service was quick. I will return again.
I hope you enjoy this article and do share your restaurant reviews. If you have been to Ashfields, do let me know how you think.
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Until the next post, cheerio….