I don’t normally review, but I think I might start! As I always decide where to go by the reviews places have got, I think it’s time to start contributing.
I took my fiancé to Brighton for his birthday this weekend past. He was 25. He went to university in Brighton, and it was the beginning of our relationships – so there was much happy nostalgia to relive, of when he was a sexy and proficient drummer, and I was a relatively cool and carpe diem student..those were the days!
We stayed in Hotel Uno, which was lovely. The rooms were absolutely astounding. The raw materials they were working with (massive windows, towering ceilings) would make it hard to be otherwise. Their decor tastes were pretty questionable (think massive metal horse heads strung with red fairy lights…no, I didn’t think so…) but the beauty of the room, with its natural light and huge free-standing bath, made up for it. The balcony, with the amazing weather we had last weekend, only made it even more of an idyll.
His second present was a trip to 24 St Georges, Brighton, a restaurant in Kemp Town I’d seen highly rated on Trip Advisor. We had a lovely meal! The atmosphere was somewhat lacking (though we did arrive at 5pm, in order to get the great-value menu du jour) and the decor, again, was uninspiring – beige walls and Homebase-styled wallpaper – but the food more than made up for it.
They brought us out a bread plate, with slightly sweetened brown and white, and the star of the show – a lightly salted, vegetarian scotch egg. A sort of mushroom duxelles was wrapped around a quail’s egg, then deepfried in panko – yum! Sorry I haven’t got a picture for you!
For starters, I had pigeon with asparagus and broccoli, and duck ham (which seems to have been a sort of cooked ballotine of duck or something, sliced – excellent)! He had the crab raviolo on a brown crab broth with a lemongrass foam. The sweetness of the sugary lemongrass foam mixed with the earthy brown crab was absolutely lovely.
Between courses they asked if we’d like the palate cleanser – a mojito sorbet. This might’ve been the best part of the meal! Perfect in its simplicity, the beautiful combination of syrupy, icey mint with rum and a tiny hint of salt made for a lip-smackingly lovely palate cleanser, especially on such a hot day! Thank goodness we went for it!
For mains – I had a pork fillet with asparagus, mushroom and wild garlic greens, with a ham hock on sweetcorn puree and baby sweetcorn. The ham hock with sweetcorn and deep fried ‘hair’ strands was like a perfect version of the tastes of the Deep South, but I didn’t know where the Francophile pork fillet, asparagus and mushrooms fit in – it seemed a bit of a worldwind romance, headed for divorce. Lovely individually, though!
Pete had the lovely sea bream, with lobster tortellini and pieces of lobster. The surprising burst of flavoursome cherry tomatoes is not something I would have put with the fish, and tarragon-infused creamy sauce, but the bright burst was absolutely beautiful, and really rounded off the mouthful! Again, asparagus – well, they are in season, and I say we should make the most of them! I was quite happy to go asparagus mad.
And finally, dessert. We went for the lemon tart, with rhubarb ice cream – we couldn’t quite handle the chocolate and salted caramel mousse on a scorching 30 degree day! Not bad at all, but nothing to write home about. They did write happy birthday on the plate, which was a lovely touch!
And there you have it – a flying culinary visit to Brighton! I’ll try and get posting some of my culinary explorations later in the week, but here’s a flying taste of Brighton in the meantime! x