How do I work this thing???? Ah yes, that thing where you are baby sitting – though they are not babies – and have sent everyone to bed at the right time – and then found that you can’t work their TV….. How do I work this thing is a funny phrase – it applies to so many things. Not least, a date night with Lovely Bloke. Hope House Press has taken over so much of our lives that we haven’t had a date night since September last year. It felt like ‘a sign’ when Browns got in touch and asked if we wanted to try out their new menu and write a review of it. Browns is the first scene of the crime for The Westons. It was the location for our first date and many other Important Dates after that. We went in August last year, for our anniversary and had a lovely time. The thing with Browns, for me at any rate, is that I struggle to try new things. I know that’s pants but I love the beef there. It never fails. It’s lush.
Anyway, last night, we arrived at 7pm, ordered a bottle of prosecco – I’ve been told by a friend that I need to up my ante with it and learn to drink more of it without falling over. That was absolutely lovely. Buoyed up by the swiftly necked first glass, I went to try the white onion soup with cider cream and a posh version of cheese on toast on the side. I don’t mind telling you, I had Very High expectations of it because I am huge onion soup fan. I was gutted. It was full of onion that for me, didn’t feel cooked enough. And there was little liquid, because there was so much onion. A waitress who took my plate afterwards wanted me to have a different starter but I’d woofed the cheese on toast so my initial hunger was sorted. Lovely Bloke had asparagus, egg and ham. He said the egg was perfection and that he could eat it in a much bigger size as a main course.
Next up, the mains. I had fillet of steak with bearnise sauce, watercress salad and chips. When you phrase it like that it doesn’t sound like it should be hard work – but it is. Being a heathen, I have my meat well done – I do not like blood in my meat. This means it can be a royal pain in the butt to cook it to that standard, without it turning into a piece of chewy leather. Browns nailed it. No. really. I am salivating to think of it now. It was perfection. The sauce was thick and a mix of heavenly cream and butter and yum ness. Yes, that is a phrase. Yum ness. And the watercress salad, what do they do with it? I LOVE IT.
Lovely Bloke, bless him, felt it was important to try something new in the interests of reviewing. So he had a lobster risotto. If there had been some bread to hand I think he would have mopped the plate. I don’t get risotto. But he loved it. Said it had a lovely bit of lemon coming through without making it taste too sharp.
And finally. Bring out the angels, it was pudding time. I totally went off piste, and had chocolate brownie – which came WARM – ye gods, I nearly kissed the waitress. The chocolate ice cream on top was melting just a touch and she even sneaked me cream from the bar to drizzle on it. I didn’t manage to finish it. It was just too rich. But I battled on for as long as I could 😉 Lovely Bloke said his salted caramel profiteroles were just lovely, lovely, lovely.
And then he had a glass of dessert wine, which he promised would not leave him snoring in bed. Why did I believe him? Why? He snored like a train. So, how do I rate Browns. I think that going earlier on in the evening is good – they can sell out of some things early on. I think that the food is outstanding. The service can also be fabulous as well – we do love their staff. It’s just that there is never enough of them and you feel bad chasing them down to ask for something. If you’re not in a rush and are happy to watch the world go by sitting outside on a nice day it’s the best thing ever. If you’re on a pre theatre run, I’d tell them that when you get there, so they know you’ll want to get a wriggle on. I love it. I love Browns. We will definitely go back soon – we asked someone at a table nearby what he had for his mains – it was beef and on top of something mash looking, with a sauce full of baby onions and a gravy jus that I nearly offered to taste test for him. Thank you Browns for reminding me how much fun it is to be with my Bloke. I had a lovely night and encourage you to visit the place soon so you can tell me the name of the next beef dish I want to try!
Disclaimer: Browns paid for the meal for our review. We bought our own dessert wine! We really do love Browns and totally recommend it.