Food Post Restaurant Review

BENEDICTS Restaurant Review

My Husband and I love food. We love going out for dinner, cooking at home, visiting new places and trying new things. We are so lucky to live in the fine city of Norwich and have an amazing selection of places to go, right on our doorstep.

Last night we visited BENEDICTS, wanting somewhere a little more special to celebrate my Husband’s Birthday.

When I was deciding where to go- I kept plugging ‘Norwich vegan friendly restaurants’ into Google looking for inspiration, and BENEDICTS kept appearing alongside the usual veggie/vegan restaurants I had expected to see. BENEDICTS is a modern British restaurant on St Benedict’s Street in the city centre, famous for unpretentious upmarket, fine dining in a relaxed setting. I had of course heard of them, but hadn’t in a million years thought they would be able to cater for our vegan tummies!

We have visited lots of lovely restaurants in the city since becoming vegan- most notably, Delia’s at the football ground, The Assembly House and The Ivy, and they have all been fantastic and where necessary have been very accommodating, being able to go ‘outside’ of their normal menu to create something for us. BENEDICTS was different and took me completely by surprise. As part of their standard permanent menus, they have a 6 and 8 course menu for both vegetarians and vegans. I immediately booked a table.

We arrived just before 7pm and were taken to our table; the décor in the restaurant is rustic, warm and relaxed. No white linen table clothes and no quiet polite hum of diners, instead you are met with friendly faces and the liveliness of customers having fun, eating and drinking. A Birthday Card on the table was a lovely little touch. We decided to push the boat (all the way) out and go for the wine pairing. A traditional wine pairing, gives the restaurant the opportunity to select a wine to compliment each of your courses. We had always wanted to do this and so were more than happy to pay the extra and let the wonderful waiting staff make all the decisions for us!

Vegan 6 Course Menu

£ 47 per person
– Beetroot Crisps- BENEDICTS ‘Mushrooms On Toast’, Chia Powder- Popped Rice Cracker with Mango Chutney
Celeriac Broth, Soda Bread, Salted Vegan Butter
WINE PAIRING- Wally Chenin Blanc (France)
Charred Hispi Cabbage, Seaweed, Chestnut
WINE PAIRING- Mount Horrocks, Semillon, (Australia)
Puy Lentils, BBQ Red Cabbage, Salted Turnips, Roasted Onion Sauce
WINE PAIRING- Bill Downie, Petit Verdot (Australia)
Quince, El Don Olive Oil, Walnut
WINE PAIRING- Bill Downie, Petit Verdot (Australia)
Caramelised Apple, Bay Leaf Ice Cream
WINE PAIRING- Framingham Noble Riesling (New Zealand)
Wine Pairing £ 27 per person

We were so impressed with the level of service, the food and the wine pairings. We were told by our waiter, Chef/Owner Richard Bainbridge is passionate about cooking with vegetables and that shows. It was so nice to be able to experience fine dining in our own city to this standard. The food was so well thought out and balanced to perfection.

My favourite course was the Charred Hispi Cabbage, Seaweed and Chestnut. The seaweed brought so much to the dish; it was juicy, salty and had a hearty, familiarity that made it irresistible. We were both also, extremely impressed with our final course, the Caramelised Apple and Bay Leaf Ice Cream. I have always favoured savoury dishes, and most of the time would skip dessert completely, but the ice cream was a revelation, the savoury tones with the sweetness of the apple worked so well and coupled with the dessert wine, Framingham Noble Riesling, it was just the right level of sweet.

The entire menu had a wonderful sense of nostalgia to it, each dish elevated, giving a fitting sense of luxury – so that with every course your anticipation and excitement grew. It just goes to show what you can do with vegan cooking and in the right hands how creative it can be.

Certainly, for our next big occasion, we will be booking again. Thank you BENEDICTS for championing vegan food in the fine dining world.

Follow the link below if you want to discover Benedicts for yourself!

love Em Gem xxx

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