During the lockdown period of closure the tireless owners of the Ashville Steakhouse have been busy giving the restaurant’s interior a superb makeover; quirky visible filament lighting adds to the ambience of warmth and cosiness and the bar has been faced with vintage wine cases which in our case led to a spirited guessing game of which of these have we drunk/liked/never heard of etc. Some tables have been removed to take account of social distancing and there’s a one way system of entry and exit so everybody can enjoy themselves safely.
Having not been out for so long we were greatly looking forward to our evening and at least one of us had had a short period of starvation in anticipation of enjoying their deservedly famous steaks right to the last mouthful. The steaks, all served with triple cooked chips, grilled tomatoes, mushrooms and dressed leaves, take in all the cuts right up to a 96oz T-Bone and it would be a brave man to tackle one of those. There is also a choice of sauces: peppercorn, chimichurri, stilton, mushroom and lemon aioli. If you are not in the mood for steak there is beer battered fish, pan fried salmon, chicken supreme and a vegetarian dish so the menu has a good choice for everyone.
I decided on roasted chicken supreme with creamy mashed potato and seasonal vegetables, and at the other side of the table, a 10 oz fillet steak cooked very rare with stilton sauce. The restaurant’s wine list by the glass is excellent and I remembered having a rather good Malbec before but this time we both chose a smoky and robust South African Shiraz which was a good pairing for both the steak and the chicken. To say the steak was exceptional is probably an understatement; it tasted so good my husband said it was the best he’d ever had and it would be a sin to put the stilton sauce on it – no worries, I saw to it that I made it disappear with a few chips. The melt-in-the-mouth chicken supreme was a fine dish too and I really enjoyed the delicate flavoursome baby carrots and shredded cabbage served alongside it.
It’s worth saying that this restaurant keeps up its reputation for quality meats and consistently good food so you can be assured of a perfect meal each time you visit. Service is always friendly and welcoming, the prices very reasonable at around £30 per head including drinks. We had great fun; it was lovely to see tables of diners having a rip-roaring time and I actually heard that good old Bristolian saying “gurt lush” being applied to the steak so that says it all!