The Marco Pierre White Steakhouse and Grill restaurant housed within the Cadbury House Hotel is a rare treat and much worth the trip out of town even if you are not staying at the hotel. Arriving at the elegant and luxuriously furnished bar we were offered drinks before dinner but side-stepped this offer as although early we were already famished. The spacious and warmly lit restaurant is welcoming, there’s lots of buttoned leather and muted colours and our mood was mellow as we slipped into a commodious booth for two and looked over the menu.
Obviously, steak is a major attraction (finest quality grass fed Campbell Brothers’ beef) but fish, pork and lamb, as well as vegetarian dishes are well represented. First off, we liked the sound of Mr White’s Scotch Egg as a starter, but it fell off the list as perhaps being too filling if followed by a steak. After some deliberation we chose Classic Prawn Cocktail and Caesar Salad, to be followed by Fillet Steak with Garlic Butter and Roast Chicken à la Forestière. No quirk of the fussy diner phases the attentive and professional staff, my lettuce-hating companion was happily accommodated with a prawn cocktail without it; actually, in a new twist the prawn cocktail comes in a bowl that you mix yourself, plus a half lemon to squeeze as needed.
We loved our starters, my Caesar salad was perfect with just the right amount of anchovies for a salty bite, topped with plenty of shaved Parmesan and hiding in the centre a hard-boiled hen’s egg. The prawn cocktail sans lettuce was delicious in its simplicity and hit the spot as ordered. Whilst waiting for our main courses we admired the restaurant’s enviable collection of Raymond Jackson cartoons from yesteryear just as amusing now, and still politically relevant.
So, to the main event, tender fillet steak cooked beautifully rare as ordered, atop toasted sourdough smothered in garlic butter, with fricassèe of woodland mushroom and buttered leaf spinach, and plump chicken breast gently roasted in Madeira juices with spinach, woodland mushrooms and fondant potato. Plus of course fat and chunky chips on the site. A formidable duo and enjoyed to the last flavoursome mouthful by us.
To finish our excellent dinner, we shared a classic cheesecake with fresh blueberry sauce. The Head Chef that evening was Huw Woods to whom we must surely send our compliments and also Peter Zuffa for the seamless service and attention to detail which is so apparent throughout the restaurant. The restaurant has a great atmosphere, the wines are very reasonably priced, as is the food, which altogether confirmed that this was the destination for all our future special celebrations.