The Walrus, Brighton


+ + + + August 20, 2017

I was about to write “I haven’t written about food in ages!” But my last post was about cheese. And what a post it was! It got over 4500 page views and was quoted in the Daily Mail (among other places). But now the dust has settled and I’m back to how I was pre-cheesefame. So I’ve gone through my things and found some photos from when we visited the new(ish) pub The Walrus when I was on staycation.

Katy and I decided while we had time off, to pop Poppy over to her grandparents’ for a few days so we could have a few date nights. On one of these nights (I think it was a Thursday), we went over to The Walrus, as I’d spotted mentions of it in a few places and read a review over on .

We stepped in and I was immediately impressed by the fancy decor. The main floor is a bar which seems to stretch back for miles and there’s a lower-ground level too. Upstairs is an equally expansive dining area, which is where we headed. Everything feels really pretty and luxe. It manages to balance as masculine feel with being rather pretty. There are loads of things to look at, from old photos on the wall, to an old clock, to sparkling chandeliers and an old French flag tucked away in the corner.

Katy and I were sat in a little alcove by the window, which was lovely. We did notice our brass-topped table had a very metallic scent to it (go figure) but we adapted quickly.

I had this strawberry and raspberry soda which I’ve never tried before and loved. I think Katy had a cider but I couldn’t tell you what kind it was.

We ordered two starters and found one to be disappointing and one to be amazing.

The disappointing one was the Lemon & Dill Cured Salmon which came with cucumber, caper and pink peppercorn. Unfortunately, all we could taste was the lemon. It overpowered everything else on the plate (except maybe the capers). I think if the salmon had been decently smoked it could have been a nice mix of flavours, but sadly it wasn’t.

The amazing starter was the Heirloom Tomato Salad. The tomatoes were fresh and flavourful. They were dressed with ricotta and basil. And to top it off (or, I suppose, to bottom it out) they were served in a basket made of crisp parmesan cheese. It was so good, we discussed coming back just to order multiple of them.

For our mains, Katy ordered the Sea Trout with fennel, beetroot, squash puree and steamed mussels. Even though it was gluten-free (the Walrus label their menu, which is fab), I couldn’t try it since I’m also allergic to beetroot! I’m not a huge fan of mussels anyway. Katy enjoyed her dish but she wasn’t blown away by it.

I went for the Steamed Plaice which was rather interesting. It was the fish, stuffed with salmon mousse, with potatoes and chard. It was topped with a battered langoustine, which still had its eyes. The server put it down in front of me and I kept my cool while I snapped a photo then begged Katy to remove it from my sight immediately. She doesn’t have a problem with her food staring her in the face, so she ate the little guy instead.

The fish was lovely. It was served in a really rich lemon butter sauce, which thankfully wasn’t as lemony as our super-citric starter. Like I said, though, it was so rich. I actually didn’t finish my meal and I think it was mainly the sauce to blame for filling me up so quickly!

Even though we were pretty full, we decided to go the whole hog and order dessert. There’s only one gluten free dessert on the menu, and it’s a brownie, which I’m sure will surprise nobody as that’s the most common gluten free dessert of all time. It had chunks of white chocolate in it, which was nice, to break up the richness of the chocolate. I think if it hadn’t had that, I wouldn’t have ordered it because a brownie is a brownie, but it was actually a nice way to round off the meal.

Overall, I’d say our experience at The Walrus was a bit mixed, but it wasn’t bad by any means. The decor is lovely, and there’s plenty of variety on offer. Not to mention plenty of space. While we might not go there for a date night again, we’d definitely have a drink in a bar. And if I was asked to recommend somewhere that can seat a large group with varying dietary needs, I would definitely suggest it! It’s certainly a big step up from a fancy chain restaurant, although maybe not as nice as some of the other places Brighton has on offer at a similar price point.

Thanks for reading! Let me know what you think in the comments below.

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