When choosing somewhere special to celebrate an occasion, there are things which must be consider, I always consider these three things when booking a restaurant:
Some of Niki’s friends, Jayne & Will, came to stay with us this weekend and it was a special occasion after they’d just got engaged after a recent trip to America. Niki and I wanted to take them somewhere to celebrate and I knew just the place; Hotel Du Vin & Bistro.
The Georgian facade of Hotel Du Vin stands proudly overlooking our famous Stray. I visit Hotel Du Vin quite regularly as it’s great for meeting people and working so it’s a little like a family. However, I’d not eaten in the Bistro. The AA Rosette-awarded bistro offers European fare and an extensive wine list.
We were welcomed in to the dining room which emulated French Bistro; elegant and oaky. Hotel Du Vin’s signature interiors boast dark polished woods, lots of leather and shades of burgundy, mixed with candle lit tables and freshly ironed linen napkins.
Jayne and I had a bottle of Hotel Du Vin’s house champagne while the boy’s chose a Pinot Grigio Blush. Hotel Du Vin is famous for an extensive wine list. The hotel also hosts wine tasting evening, which are not only great value for money but you broaden your horizons into the world of wine.
For starters, we shared Chipirones and Courgette Flower Fritos (£7.25). Or crispy fried baby squid and courgette flowers to you and me. The squid was tasty and cooked well, there was no toughness there and the anchovy aioli cut through the batter perfectly.
We also shared Hotel Du Vin’s signature Severn & Wye Smoked Salmon (£9.50) served with soft boiled quails eggs, shallots, capers and cornichons. It looked pretty on the plate but I wondered if it was missing bread or crackers.
It was pleasing to see the restaurant so full of people, also celebrating. It created the perfect atmosphere to relax and enjoy the company of Will & Jayne.
The menu is extensive but not overwhelming. There’s classic dishes such as Boeuf Bourguignon tor chose something from the grill, such as a flavourful, thick strip of beef called Onglet Steak.
Will and Jayne opted for a Ribeye steak (£26.95) while Niki and I were tempted by their Chateaubriand (£65.00 for two sharing). Perfectly pink and accompanied by frites, one side (we chose spinach) and a fried egg onion bread which tasted like an onion ring, without the crunch.
Will and Jayne shared a Creme Brulee (£6.95). This yummy bowl of baked vanilla custard, under a window of glazed sugar was scrumptious, we all wanted a spoonful or two. It would have been nice to have some sort of garnish on this such as a mint leaf or raspberries – but that could be the Instagrammer in me!
Niki and I went for the most extravagant thing on the desserts menu – Knickerbocker Glory (£7.95). Taking a little longer to put together it didn’t disappoint. With layers of fresh pineapple, strawberry compote, white chocolate brownie, candied pistachio and strawberry ice cream topped with torched marshmellow goodness!
Hotel Du Vin staff we’re attentive, friendly and proficient throughout out meal. Despite dessert taking a little longer than I expected, I was extremely impressed with the service and indeed the evening.
Receive 50% off throughout January
Hotel Du Vin are offering 50% off their a la carte menu this January! And you will be entered into a draw for one of five gift cards for £500, valid at any Hotel du Vin in the UK!
P.S. Thank you to Hotel Du Vin for inviting us to review their Bistro Menu. We went on to enjoy a lovely evening in Harrogate. We do have a wonderful town!
Have you eaten at Hotel Du Vin? Where do you like to celebrate with friends and family?