I’m often happy to share my invites with my lovely guest bloggers. But this is one I’m very jealous I didn’t get to experience for myself (boo house buying and no annual leave left!) This time Dr C is off to The River Restaurant at the wonderful Lowry Hotel in Manchester for an indulgent date night.
Over to Dr C… The River Restaurant at The Lowry Hotel, helmed by Executive Chef Andrew Green, has launched a new a la carte menu. Focused on moving away from “small plates” and taking traditional dishes and putting a modern spin on them. I was excited to find out how this new menu shaped up! I studied the menu in advance and had pretty much decided for both me and my boyfriend what we were going to have for dinner. I’m a massive romantic so I was totally on board with the sharing options on the impressive menu. So, we headed over to Manchester with empty stomachs, ready to fill them with tasty food!
We arrived a little early for our reservation and decided to take a pre-dinner drink in the River Bar. We both decided on a gin and tonic. I went with the recommendation of our server and went with the Sis4ers Distillery gin. We were both quite delighted to be served some olives and nuts whilst we drank our gins and took in views over the River Irwell. As an aside, if you’ve not been before, The River Restaurant & Bar has a lovely terrace that is wonderful on those rare sunny days in Manchester!
Pretty much knowing that we were going to have beef for our main course we both opted to go with seafood starters. I decided on the Potted Shrimp and my boyfriend went with the Crab Macaroni Cheese. To describe the potted shrimp as decadent and indulgent is an understatement. It was rich, buttery, perfectly seasoned and complemented well by the biscuit toasted rye bread. There was definitely some food envy going on at our table. Dan loved the crab macaroni cheese. It was delicious and garlic and lemon crumb added the perfect zing and bite to the dish. Before our main course our server Daniel brought us a delicious raspberry sorbet palate cleanser. This was just the right thing to get us ready for the main event.
For me, there was only ever going to be one option on the menu, the Sharing Beef Wellington. Thankfully Dan agreed with this decision! We decided to have it cooked rare and served with chunky chips and tenderstem broccoli. Our chef for the evening, Ferdinand, brought the whole Beef Wellington to the table. It looked absolutely mouth-watering! It was whisked off to be carved and was swiftly brought back to the table to be devoured. It was cooked absolutely wonderful, perfectly rare! The pastry was light and flaky, the mushroom duxelle was seasoned wonderfully and the beef, oh my gosh the beef! It was one of the tastiest pieces of meat I’ve had in a long time.
There has to be a special mention about the chips too, I love a good chip and these did not disappoint. Triple cooked and coated in rice flour (perfect if you’re a coeliac!) for extra crunchiness. I fully admit to just dunking these in the super rich madeira sauce served with the Beef Wellington. As we were having beef we decided to split a bottle of red wine. On Daniel’s recommendation we went with a bottle of the Serbal Argentinian Malbec and it was the perfect accompaniment to stand up to the rich beef.
We really should have been stuff by this point, but I really wanted to have space for dessert after spying something incredible sounding on the menu. The Amarena Cherry Baked Alaska for two. Cherry, ice cream and meringue, heaven! The ice cream inside was a delicious vanilla, still perfectly frozen. The meringue blanket was crunchy on the outside and oh so chewy in the middle. My only minor, and I mean minor, criticism was that I would have like a bit more of the cherry sauce – it was delicious and we had to ration it a little. To compliment our dessert we both had a glass of the Late Harvest Sauvignon, a wonderfully syrupy floral dessert wine. Feeling full, but not quite ready to move we both opted for a nightcap in the form of a Rusty Nail. A delicious (and strong!) way to end our meal.
The River Restaurant at The Lowry Hotel made for a great date night location, maybe one to keep in your head for a birthday or anniversary. We had brilliant service throughout the night – attentive but never overbearing, and full of personal recommendations. I certainly want to come back to The Lowry Hotel, maybe next time I can convince Dan that we should stay in one of the rooms!
Have you been for date night at The River Restaurant yet? Let me know in the comments,
P.S. Dr C was invited to dinner by The River Restaurant at The Lowry Hotel, her meal was complimentary in return for an honest review. As ever all words, photos and opinions are her own.
P.P.S. The River Restaurant at The Lowry Hotel is located at 50 Dearmans Pl, Salford M3 5LH.