Up close and personal

by Jo Rham

HAVE you ever considered getting your own, personal chef? Costs too much, right? Well, The Swan could have the solution, where their new concept is a whole, roof-top, dining experience.

Still offering fantastic fayre in the bar downstairs, with amazing specials such as poached cod with creamy, white-wine and basil sauce, and a sprinkle of fresh spinach, served with mash and veg (no boil-in-the-bag here), or crispy, belly pork in a creamy, sweet, apple-and-cider sauce, you can now book a table, on a Monday night, for their special, roof-top evening.

A set menu is offered, teppanyaki/fusion style. Just a few tables are available, with a maximum of 12 people, and your own chef and waiter are included. In our case it was Tim and Joey, when we were invited to try the night for ourselves.

Tim has been working at The Swan, owned by Tony, Angela and Anthony, for four and half years, and came up with the idea for the rooftop to be used for a more-intimate experience. He uses his experience as a chef and flambé chef, in his previous job, to create interesting dishes.

Our evening started with a welcome glass of blue fizz. This intriguing sweet, blue, fizzy wine was just enough to get the taste buds going. Next came a beef carpaccio, and a garlic, tomato and cheese bruschetta.

The soft beef was complemented by salty parmesan, ground pepper and a squeeze of lemon, and went perfectly with the crunch of the cheesy bruschetta.

As the next course was being cooked, the beautiful garlicky smells filled the terrace. The seared scallops were cooked to perfection, with just the right hint of garlic and fresh coriander, and were accompanied by a light, crisp, dressed salad.

As our plates were swiftly removed, we ordered a bottle of Torres wine to accompany our next course. Now came the drama of the ever-popular flambé. Tim expertly poured Jack Daniels over the marinated beef, and, no sooner had the flames subsided, the well-presented dish of beef, courgette and mushroom, with a spicy sauce, arrived at our table.

This delicious meal, even though I was starting to get full, left me wanting to try more flavours. I was not disappointed. The last of the savoury courses was Cajun-style cod, served with vegetable rice.

This beautiful soft fish, with a sweet, vinegar reduction, was just “melt in the mouth”. There were certainly no Oliver-Twist-style pleas for more with this venue – there was always more to come.

Last, but not least, Cointreau sorbet with fresh fruit was brought to the table. Not usually keen on alcohol in dessert, I was not particularly looking forward to this. But I gave it a try, and, wow, the word that sprung to mind was zing! Before I knew it, and with a little bit of brain freeze, I admit my glass was empty.

The menu itself was worth every cent. Coupled with reasonable bar prices, it made for an affordable evening which was more than just eating. A whole feast, with so many flavours and tastes, created a personal dining experience and memorable night, all made possible by Anthony and Charlotte, who were working downstairs, and Tim and Joey, with their friendly, smooth service.

Check out the menus at The Swan , or in the local press, for the Monday-night menu, because, from week to week, they have different experiences.

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Posted by on Mar 1 2019. Filed under Food. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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