Gilding the lily with sequel to Eat Out to Help Out this September at Tigerlily
By Sharon Wilson
"Has anything changed?" I asked
"Everything," replies the maître d'.
I am in Tigerlily feeling happy after a great meal. He is referring to a new chef and a focus on seasonal local produce but the air crackles with fresh enthusiasm too. Everyone is basking in a post-lockdown glow. Staff are cheerful and kudos to them for a smooth and friendly restaurant experience.
The boutique venue set the trend for blingy entrances and we pass a group of Instagrammers as we ascend the Georgian steps to have our temperatures taken at the reception.
We are then whisked to our booth where I am soon sipping an Ardbeg 10-year-old sour. I like my cocktails punchy, potent and classic. OK, this one has a twist but is all the better for the smoky whisky; a triumph, perfectly served.
French toast has never been a 'thing' with me, but eating Handpicked Scottish Crab with brown crab butter, pickled cucumber & sorrel is a revelation. Light fresh crustacean on rich fried bread. Mr Bite has Chicken Caesar Croquettes bursting with chunky meat. Frisky gem lettuce, salty Parmesan shavings and tangy signature dressing make this starter his favourite course.
No reflection on his Tomahawk Pork Chop, which he describes as "perfectly moist and juicy." Seasonal broad beans, greenery and Chinese mustard are supplemented with a side of tasty cheesy mash. I have Tandoori Baked Sea Bass which comes deboned but whole. A dusting of spice complements rather than competes with the tender melting flesh. Cubes of Bombay spiced potatoes are as flavourful as Mr Bite's mash. Wilted spinach plus tomato and mint yoghurt complete the plate.
Puddings are good. Sticky toffee pudding has a nice springy texture, and chocolate fondant oozes appropriately, but both lack the wow factor of our previous courses. Peanut butter ice cream is the highlight here.
Tigerlily ticked all the boxes for us. We felt safe and enjoyed delicious food and drink in a beautiful city centre location.
This month the Montpelier Group are running a sequel to the Eat Out to Help Out scheme. Customers get 50% off their bill, up to the value of £10 per person, Monday - Wednesday across Tigerlily, Rabble, Indigo Yard and Montpeliers. Book now!