A cosy Bistro serving seasonal sharing dishes that are well-presented and tasty, alongside an array of cocktails wines and beers. A nice little hang-out but be prepared to ask or Google some of the menu or be open-minded to trying as much as you can!
A few weeks ago I met up with a few local foodies to try the food at Bench and it was pleasantly surprising! There were 6 of us and we were all a little unsure what some of the items on the menu were or how the food was going to be served in terms of portion sizes and what on earth to order. The best thing that one of us did was say, “just feed us”.
So we stated any dietary requirements (think I was the only slightly fussy one not eating seafood) and that we were all happy to share, and asked the staff to bring out their recommended dishes and keep them coming until we were full. I think this is the best way to dine here; be open to suggestions and trying out new things that you may not have even heard of, new textures and tastes. Even the courses classed as salads were really tasty and decent portions to fill us up!
Here are the dishes we shared amongst ourselves (I didn’t try the fish but it looked great);
- Burratta with olive oil. A cheese similar to mozzarella, so smooth and fresh, I could have eaten it all. The peppery olive oil gave it a kick too!
- Coronation Chicken Skewer. These were really tasty and not at all like the coronation sandwich mix you are probably imagining that isn’t great. Slightly tangy, and cooked well.
- Grilled leeks, sauce gribiche. A refreshing side dish with a lovely crumb.
- Hispi cabbage, pickled mussels, burnt cream, pancetta. I didn’t have the mussels but this cabbage salad was well flavoured and another good veggie side dish.
- Bitter leaf salad, pear, blue cheese. A well balanced salad, and even though shared between 6 of us there was lots!
- Agretti, blood orange, chilli. Agretti is a Mediterranean crop related to spinach and beet but reminded me of samphire. This dish gave out mouthwatering flavour and we soon ordered the sourdough bread to mop up all the juice!
- Duck fat potatoes with alioli. These crispy delightful things VERY quickly became a favourite and we ordered more.
- Confit duck leg, with lentils. Brilliantly cooked duck, we shared 2 of this course between us and it was just the right amount of food to give us a great taste.
- Grilled mackerel, beetroot, horseradish. I tried the beetroot (love it) and horseradish, which was very creamy and mild, but thoroughly enjoyed these accompaniments.
- Rare breed Pork chop, broccoli, purple love and anchovy. Potentially my favourite course. Juicy pork, cooked so well and the ingredients complimented each other amazingly.
- Dessert – Lincolnshire Poacher & honey. A hard, mature cheese not a million miles away from a mature cheddar, drizzles with honey. I do enjoy a savoury & sweet mixture so rather enjoyed this.
- Dessert – Yorkshire rhubarb & apple crumble with Earl grey ice cream. Who doesn’t love a crumble? Sugary and lovely. I don’t actually remember the ice cream unfortunately, which may not be a bad thing as I can’t imagine i’d like that flavour but I clearly did haha!
- Blood orange sorbet Slightly sweet & perfectly cleared the palette.
All of the above I sampled alongside 3 glasses of wine and paid £40. Not bad for a lovely dining experience with friends.
Decor here is all mood-lighting, high tables and wine showcasing. Service was great. Definitely a dining out with a difference that I would recommend to food lovers.
To find out more about Bench and see one of their sample menus, visit their website here.
I hope that my review has inspired you to give this restaurant a try. If you have anywhere you recommend I should eat at, please leave a comment below. If you are a restaurant/food vendor and would like to collaborate with me in any way, please just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org!