Café Pizza on Trent Bridge – just one of my late night secret rendezvous for a snack

Cafe Pizza on Trent bridge

Café Pizza just across Trent Bridge on the South Side is perhaps one of the spots that I shouldn’t be admitting on the blog, but then again maybe it is time to be open?

She is like a late night temptress and seems to have become part of myfoodhunting world on the way back from the bright lights of the city

Always available, just when I just need to slum it, with a down and dirty burger.

I have walked in here on the way back from the Football, and even on the way to the football and had the place to myself. I have even been in during daylight hours, however

More often than not it has been a late night occasion when I have dropped in on my way back from town!

Some nights it seems that almost the entire crowd from the Southbank Bar and the TBI are in there ordering food. It can be quite a scene🙂

Half Pound Cheese Burger

 Double Cheeseburger at Cafe Pizza

What I like about Café Pizza is that they cook the burgers on one of those flat top type grills and so you get that lovely chargrill taste on the burger and also on the bun which they throw on the grill to toast a little.

It is a pretty basic affair, the patty itself is a really solid meaty bite, not too fatty, and really well cooked on that grill. Just right for my liking.

They describe their burger as being “Grilled American Style, all served with Fries and salad (lettuce and tomato)”. The burger and the salad is well worth the visit.

It is big, it is filling, it is perhaps not clever, but is really is very tasty!

You should come here instead of one of those chain restaurants! Keep it local!

Inside Cafe Pizza

Now don’t get me wrong, I haven’t fallen that far, but they do a very good burger here at Café Pizza.

I have eaten quite a few, and I am pretty fussy even after a beer or two

It maybe not be all fancy and  gourmet, but they know what they need to do in order to get people to come back.

Whatever time I have been pretty happy with my lot and have ended up walking back home along the embankment with my ill gotten food gains

Burger Menu

Cafe Pizza Burger Menu

Café Pizza is located on the South Side of Trent Bridge at 3-4 Trent Bridge Building

NG2 5FB

+44 (0) 115 981 1811

They are open from 5pm til late

They do as their name suggest sell Pizza

Which to my recollection are not bad at all

You can even order by email and text!

café.pizza@yahoo.co.uk

07401 126766

 

The Angel Microbrewery – A nice pint and a rather interesting burger

The Old Angel Microbrewery

The Angel Microbrewery on Stoney Street is the reincarnation of the Old Angel Pub which has been on this corner since the 1600’s. I will admit that I hadn’t been in here for at least 25 years, I used to come in in my polytechnic days when we were happy to slum it. We liked the rough and ready edges, the rock, and of course the legendary toilets.

When I came back to Nottingham it seemed that I had just grown away from that scene so we never seemed to come here anymore. It was like a distant memory.

So roll on to 2016 and the place closed to be reopened as a cleaner more sanitised angel with a yet to appear microbrewery attached. Maybe it has lost it’s edge? It seemed a bit too clean when I came in last week, and worst of all the toilets are really nice and pleasant!🙂

Ok yes you may guess that I am taking the piss a little bit and also pandering to my friends who are already moaning that it ‘just isn’t the same’.

However, I will be honest and say I like it more now and I found myself sitting in the corner, drinking a pint of local beer from the local  Black Iris brewery, and thinking “this is nice I might start coming here again

Bit of the Menu

Old Angel Microbrewery Menu

So I like a nice pint of local beer and I also like a nice bit of food so it was predictable that I would be reaching for the Menu to find something to eat.

The menu at the Angel microbrewery  is split into two sides, one for the Herbivore and one for the Carnivore. It is probably the only place I have seen in the city where there is an equal split for the vegetarian with a matching dish for the meat eater. This should be no surprise though when you find that the new owner, Benjamin Rose, is also the owner of the excellent and highly rated vegetarian and vegan Alley Café on Cannon Court just off Long Row

I honestly did consider that maybe I should choose something from the herbivore side, just in case the chef had never seen meat before, but I didn’t I ordered a burger from the Carnivore side

Burger

Old Angel Microbrewery Burger

So I ordered the ‘carnivore’ version of the Burger which was described on the menu as;

“A 6oz beef patty, made to our house recipe with back bacon, creamy blue cheese and homemade plum chutney.

Served with our organic hand cut chips, homemade burger relish and a side salad.”

It looked rustic, and it looked to be very much home made, this had the ‘Alley Café’ written all over it only with a touch of meat added. At this point I have to be honest, I am still not sure what I think about this burger. It was so kind of so ‘rough and ready’ that it felt unfinished, but it was tasty, well at least tasty in the interesting sense. Visually the burger patty is a mess, it looks like someone grabbed some meat, rolled it around a bit in their hands to form some kind of patty and bunged it on the grill. You know just how I do at home every weekend myself on my backyard barbeque.

It was kind of refreshing to get something that I might have been served at my mates house when he was being all like ‘look at me, I  made my own burger’ but at the same time I was thinking is this for real? texturally I am still not sure, it was a bit chewy it must be the way they ground the meat. It had a good taste but also a weird taste, perhaps that was the combination of plum and blue cheese?

Burger at the Angel Microbrewery

The best thing to do at this point is to just transpose what I wrote down as I ate this burger;

“Interesting! Flavour wise I am getting a little smoke, a little bit of gentle plum, it is almost perfume like, subtle but very different. In a good way?

I cant decide if this was good or the worst. It is tasty. The burger was so crumbly not sure if it was genius or just plain wrong.

The chips looked like the dirtiest greasiest things I have been served for ages BUT I actually really liked them.

They might be organic and hand cut but they also looked and tasted like they had come out of your Grandma’s chip pan on a heavy day.

Was it nice? well yeh it kind of was.

Summed up by someone else walking out ‘It tasted better than it looked’  

__________________________________________

I am looking forward to see what they have on tap when the microbrewery arrives

and next time?

I will probably order the vegetarian version of the burger which sounded pretty good on the menu;

The Caramelized Irish Field Mushroom Burger;

“A Homemade patty made from roasted mushroom sourced from ireland blended with fresh garlic, thyme, sea salt and black pepper, topped with our homemade basil pesto.
Served with organic handcut chips and a side salad” 

___________________________

The Angel Microbrewery and Freehouse is located at 7 Stoney St, Nottingham NG1 1LG

You can also follow them on their Facebook page and on Twitter

The Frame Breakers – Excellent Pub Lunch with Great Food and Beer in Ruddington

Frame Breakers Pub in Ruddington

Frame Breakers on the High Street in Ruddington is a right proper pub serving up in their own words ‘Great Beer and Good Food’. It is part of the Nottingham Brewery Family,  the same group that have the Ned Ludd in the City Centre.

The last time I came into this pub it was called the Bricklayers Arms, the name change apparently links it to the Ned Ludd  named after the Luddite leader and the Framework Knitters Museum in Ruddington which is just a few hundred yard away on Church Street.

I often drive past the pub on my way out to Gotham via Clifton, it is one of the busier junctions in Ruddington, and each time while sitting in the traffic I looked over at the pub and the people sitting out back in the beer garden and felt both  thirsty and hungry.

This week I persuaded a couple of mates from work to join me for a pub lunch, basically a ruse so that I could try the place out.

Before we came I had been looking online at the menu and I had pretty much already made my lunch selection. I had been really keen to try the “Drunken Grilled Cheese Sandwich” – ‘American style grilled cheese and beer-caramelised onion sandwich’ as I really love a proper US grilled cheese, it is one of the things I really miss from the States.

That had been the plan anyway, but that wasn’t what happened!

When we walked in I hadn’t even thought that there would be a ‘Today’s special menu’ that would turn my earlier thoughts and choices upside down

Todays Specials

Specials Menu at Frame Breakers Pub

But there was and it captured my attention in an instant, held it, grasped it a little bit more, and won my heart with the words;

“Beef and Chorizo Burger topped with cheese and chilli mayo, served in a Brioche bun with baby gem lettuce and tomato with a scoop of chips”.

Lots of my favourite food friends in a bun, what could be better?

Oh yes, the value at just £6.50!

I was pretty tempted to try the “Rio inspired Brazilian Sausage” that was ‘served simply with drunken onions and a chilli mayo dip’ as that really sounded good!

But you know what? that was never going to happen once you told me that there is a homemade beef and chorizo burger to be eaten!

 Beef and Chorizo Burger with a ‘scoop of chips’

Chorizo Beefburger at Frame Breakers in Ruddington

The Burger arrived in one of those red plastic trays just like you get in the classic American Diner. My first thoughts or salivations were all about that molten cheese oozing out of the bun and dripping down the side of the burger.

I really do not know how I was able to control myself long enough to take a photo. It was looking rustic and it was looking just as promised ‘home made’, it was looking like a winner!

Alongside the burger was that ‘scoop’ of chips, mentioned oh so casually on the specials poster.

I was only expecting some sort of  basic chip garnish, so I was delighted when it turned out to be a big freshly cooked mound of delightful potato bites.

They were really well cooked, freshly cut, nicely thick, crisp casing and fluffy potato filling, almost perfection.

But what about the burger that you were drooling all over a moment ago?

Beef and Chorizo Burger 

Burger at Frame Breakers in Ruddington

The Beef and Chorizo Burger was really quite delicious, it is the sort of burger that you just cannot stop eating. It was a good job that it was not twice the size because trust me I would be stuffing it into my mouth all day long .

The burger patty was quite the star, crumbly beef with chunky pieces of sweet and spicy chorizo sausage are blended together in an almost perfect ratio, perfect for me anyway. The beef was moist and really well seasoned, it was the perfect compliment to the chorizo by balancing out the sweet spice. Honestly each bite was a delight.

The whole burger sandwich was really well constructed, they have the layer of crunchy lettuce on the base on the bun to stop all the juice escaping into the bread, now it might sound a bit daft to mention, but it is attention to detail like this that can make or break a burger, as it helps to stop a soggy bottom layer which all too often is the reason so many pub burgers fall apart in your hands.

The top and bottom bun had a layer of really quite awesome chilli mayo spread upon them. It was a kind of spicy thousand island dressing with more heat, more tang, and more creaminess.

The cheese on the top was just about perfect too, it was a mature cheddar (I think) and it gave that tanginess and sweetness that you really needed to cut through the spice from the mayo, the sweet chorizo, and those lovely meat juices, that dribbled out of the burger bun with each bite.

Did I like it? Hell yes! I have used all my favourite burger words🙂

What else have they got?

The Nottingham Pie

Nottingham Pie at Frame Breakers in Ruddington

The Nottingham Pie sounded pretty interesting “Homemade beef brisket served upside down in a filo pastry case topped with mashed potato, crumbled Stilton cheese and crispy bacon bits, plus a healthy portion of minted peas”

I was intrigued!

Fortunately one of my companions, Antony, ordered it and really enjoyed it, so much so that I took advantage and asked him for a quote (luckily it was a bit longer than “It was really nice”)

“The Pie was a lovely homemade mash sprinkled with bacon bits and stilton cheese on top of tender (fall apart) brisket encased in filo pastry. Came with tasty gravy and minted mushy peas. A bargain and a wonderful combination of ingredients”

I have to say that it did look darn good on his plate, the open pie was quite unusual looking but I could see that it was packed with potato, brisket and chunks of stilton cheese.

When it arrived those fresh green mushy peas topped with a drizzle of thick mint sauce looked so vibrant against the white tin plate.

I could smell that lovely aroma of peas and mint drifting across the table, it was a good job that my burger arrived moments later!

Note to self: Come back and try the pie

Inside the pub

Inside Frame Breakers Ruddington

The Frame Breakers is a really great pub, I really like what they have done with the place, it is very relaxed inside, bright and airy.

The staff were really friendly and the locals were pretty chatty too it all felt very welcoming

There was some really great food on offer as well (which I may already have mentioned) and I understand that they source a lot of the produce locally with the meat coming from the local butcher.

Beer wise they had all the Nottingham Brewery classics and a few guests as well, they post any events on their social media such as last week when they posted that “Its International IPA day today so come and celebrate with our fantastic range of IPA’s and EPA’s.”

I am pretty sure that we will be back for another visit

This place has ‘Friday Lunchtime Spot’ written all over it!

Next time Maybe I will eat that Grilled Cheese Sandwich? or maybe I am secretly hoping that they still have that Beef and Chorizo Burger on the Menu!

House Specials Menu

Frame Breakers Menu Ruddington

Ooh I just remembered that they have a ‘Breaker Burger’ on the menu – 2 burgers with cheese and chilli, yum maybe that has to be added to the list too!

Frame Breakers in Ruddington

The Frame Breakers pub is located on the High Street in Ruddington at the cross roads with Kirk Lane and Church Street. NG11 6DT

They do have a  car park and there is also a good bus, the NCT 10, that runs from the City you can catch if you have no designated driver and fancy a good session on those Nottingham Brewery ales

Check them out too on their Facebook page and also on their Twitter Feed   

 

 

The National Videogame Arcade Toast Bar and Garden – all sorts of Toasted Snacks while you play

 

National Videp Arcade Nottingham

The National Videogame Arcade is the home to many an arcade machine and retro game system classic. It is a great place to hang out for kids of all ages and many people I talked to hadn’t been in because they think that you have to get a ticket to go in. Well you do need one for the museum but it seems that a little known fact is that you can go into their café; The Toast Bar for free!

That is what I have found myself doing on occasion, and apart from chomping on some great ‘toast’ themed snacks, you can also play quite a selection of arcade and video games all for free too! When I was last in a group of kids were playing Mario Cart on the Telly and some slightly older ‘kids’ were playing some other retro games a bit more quietly.

Tuna Melt

Tuna Melt at the Toast Bar

At the Toast Bar there were a lot of different toasted sandwiches ‘Toasties’ to try out. I was pretty keen to try the “Rarebit” which was a combination of cheddar cheese, crème fraiche, mustard and onion chutney. Initially I ordered that for £3.50 but unfortunately they had run out of chutney so they offered me a swap, no problem I wanted everything so I swapped for one of my other all time faves the Tuna Melt on Sourdough bread.

This was pretty good, so I didn’t mind the swap out, that is how life rolls sometimes!

The sourdough bread had toasted well and had that lovely beer taste (I know that it’s the yeast that makes the flavour, but beer taste makes me happier).

The bread was toasted just enough to make it crunchy but not to much to make it hard. I love the mix of soft tangy melted cheese and slightly salty tuna that you get in this particular sandwich. This effort at the Toast bar did not disappoint!

What else was there on that menu? Well there was one called The Pizza, and another called The Reuben which was “pastrami, mozzarella and sauerkraut with Russian dressing.” I could have easily ordered that too as I love me a Reuben.

You could have “The Roast Dinner” which is apparently, as you might guess,  basically Roast beef and gravy! another one on the list was The Nacho described as being “Cheese, Tortilla chips, jalapenos, sour cream and salsa“. I was assured that it was was just like having nacho’s, but I don’t like Nacho’s so I was happy to be having the Tuna Melt!

Ooh I’ll have a Latté

Latte Coffee at the Toast bar in Nottingham

 

I am not a massive coffee drinker but I was in the mood for a Latté and since it photographed so well I just though I would mention that🙂 also I can then mention that they are also a great supporter of the local producer with their coffee being supplied by the Damn Fine Coffee Company, and by Lee & Fletcher, both local independent businesses!

So what else was there on that ‘Toastie’ menu? Well there was one called The Pizza, and another called The Reuben which was “pastrami, mozzarella and sauerkraut with Russian dressing”.

I could have easily ordered that too as I love me a Reuben!

You could also have one called “The Roast Dinner” which apparently basically Roast beef and gravy! or one called The Nacho described as being “Cheese, Tortilla chips, jalapenos, sour cream and salsa. I was assured that it was just like having nacho’s, I don’t like Nacho’s so was happy to be having the Tuna Melt

The NVA Toast Bar and Garden sign

The Toast Bar menu was not all just about Toasties, they have plenty of other Toast related items for our delectation. I really meant to come back in to try their ‘Scrambled Eggs on toast’ one Sunday morning, and I still do plan to. You can also have ‘beans on toast’ both for £3.

If you just want some Toast?

You can get Two slices for £1.50 and they have plenty of toppings such as peanut butter, nutella, honey, sliced banana, or jam (raspberry / strawberry) and marmalade that you can add for 50p.

It is just one big world of Toast isn’t it!

They are Located at

The National Videogame Arcade
24-32 Carlton Street
Nottingham
NG1 1NN

Just thought I should also mention that

The Bread comes from a local artisan producer; Hambleton Bakery, and they get their cakes from Homemade which is just up the road Hockley way

_______________________

You can check out Toast Bar and see their up to date menu on their website and you can also follow them on Facebook and on Twitter too

 

Watson Fothergills – Ale Battered Haddock Fillet (aka Fish and Chips)

 

Fothergills

It was a Friday so it was once again time to get my hands on a plate of Fish and Chips. We headed up the hill past the castle, through the hordes of Pokémon Go hunters by the Robin Hood Statue over to Watson Fothergills to see what they had on offer.

The food at Fothergills is always excellent and they usually have a really good selection of local beer so we were pretty hopeful

Ale Battered Haddock Fillet (aka Fish and Chips)

Fish and Chips at Fothergills

We were in luck, ‘Fish and Chips’ was on the menu, although they made it sound a little bit fancier here by describing it as;

“Ale and citrus battered haddock with minted pea pureé,

chips, and homemade tartare sauce

I really do favour a nice piece of Haddock when choosing my fried fish and this beast on my plate lived up to my hopes and expectations. The fish inside was moist and held it’s shape in solid flakes as you cut it open. Interestingly they had taken the skin off the fish, which was a nice touch but not typical for a battered fish in Nottingham.

The batter is a lot darker in colour and quite a lot crunchier than you might expect to find if you were in a chip shop. I did like the crispy coating, it did have, as suggested from the menu description a little bit of a lemony twist and a bit of a malty taste from the beer. They had sprinkled mine with sea salt and flakes of parsley which was a little bit old school.

The well cooked chips were hidden beneath and there were just about enough of them to keep up with the chowing of that fish, you know what I mean, forkful of fish, couple of chips dipped into mushy pea, back to another forkful of chips, sip of beer, and continue ad infinitum until plate is empty.

The homemade tartare sauce was quite pleasant, it had a good depth of creaminess and a tart tang as one would hope. I really quite liked the minty pea puree, it had a really fresh and minty taste. I do though really like a proper pot of mushy peas so was kind of thinking something was a little amiss in my world. I would have like the minty puree with some sort of lamb dish.

Fish and Chips at Fothergills

All in all this was a really good plate of food and I really enjoyed my somewhat upscale Fish and Chips Friday.

I have found that the food at Watson Fothergills is always pretty good and this matched all my previous experiences. It was a good decision to pop in!

Watson Fothergills is located

 Situated up by the Castle at 5-7 Castle Road
Nottingham NG1 6AA
Tel: 0115 9588195

it is a 5 minute walk from the Old Market Square Tram Stop.

You can follow them on Twitter for more up to date news, or check them out on Facebook

Other visits we have written about may have involved more beer:

This is my Friday Heaven – Fothergill’s Fish Pie washed down with a bottle of Goose Island 312

Fothergills – ‘Bistro-style food in a relaxed bar by Nottingham Castle’

Pokemon Sign at Fothergills

They were encouraging the Pokémon Go hunters

No Comment🙂

 

 

 

 

The Tall Frog in West Bridgford – An Aladdin’s cave of Deli Delights

The Tall Frog in West Bridgford

The Tall Frog on Melton Road in West Bridgford is a lovely family run deli. I quite often pop in here for a spot of lunch when I am in the area. They have a really good selection of panini, hot and cold sandwiches, pastries, savoury baked items, plus homemade soups and salads. I usually like to order a sandwich made up from the selection of excellent cheeses and cold meats from the counter.

I don’t often find myself blogging about the same places again even if I go there every week, however I last wrote about this deli back in 2013 (read more here) so perhaps it is time to remind a few people all about how good it is!

This last week when we were in, I was in the mood for a jacket potato, there is usually a homemade hot topping which can change from day to day today, and on when you get here. They are very popular and can sell out fast!  Today it was a choice of Chilli and of Bolognese, but I fancied one of their cold toppings, they have some very good ones here.

Jacket Potato with Coronation Chicken

Jacket Potato with Coronation Chicken from The Tall Frog

I ordered the Jacket Potato topped with Coronation Chicken which even though I say so myself is an excellent choice. The Coronation Chicken salad here is a little thicker than other places, they are very generous meat wise and is really packed with lots of chunky chicken.

The sauce is creamy with a little bit of a citric tang, a little bit of sweet from the raisin, and a little bit of spice too from the curry powder mixed into the mayo. It is really good!

The jacket potato is cooked just as I like it with a nice crispy baked skin, I think that I get a little hint of saltiness so I wonder if they bake them will a little bit of sea salt scattered in the tray? Whether you get a  hot or a cold topping I love the way that the sauce melts into the soft potato.

Jacket Potato with Chilli and Cheese

Jacket Potato with Chilli and Cheese

This particular day, as a I said the two hot toppings that were available were Chilli and Bolognese, my companions on this trip each tried one of those.

The Chilli with Cheese topped potato pictured above was most certainly topped very generously with filling. So much so that I cannot even see the potato!

Sausage Roll

Sausage Roll at The Tall Frog Deli

I also had a sausage roll, it was so hard to resist, the counter was heaving with hot pastry options and they all looked and smelt so good! Somehow one found its way into my hands.

The sausage rolls here have a super light flaky pastry packed with lots of well flavoured sausage meat. I think that this might just be the best sausage roll in West Bridgford!

Cakes at the Tall Frog Deli

The Tall Frog is packed with deli delights, wherever you look inside the shop there is going to be something to take your fancy. On the counter you will find pasta salads, cheeses from near and far, and a whole load of continental meats. In the window there is often a super selection of cakes and pastries, in the other window even more deli produce, fresh veg and fruit, and all around the walls shelves of jams, pickles, sauces and more. It really is quite the Aladdin’s cave!

The Tall Frog is located at 99 Melton Rd, West Bridgford, Nottingham NG2 6ET and is open 7 days a week.

There is plenty of parking on the road outside and it is also on several bus routes up and down Melton Road.

Noor Jahan on Mansfield Road – Great value and excellent Bangladeshi Food

Noor Jahan on Mansfield Road

Noor Jahan is a down to earth, friendly welcoming Bangladeshi restaurant on Mansfield Road. I came here on recommendation to try the place out last week and it was well worth the visit. It might not be all fancy like those Indian restaurants up on Maid Marian way, but I found it to much more comfortable and relaxing a place to dine and would come here again.

They do a really good deal of a Set Meal for 1 for £12.95 where you can order ‘any’ starter, ‘any’ main, a side dish or naan, and rice. The word ‘any’ was quite important as they really did mean that. I didn’t take on the deal, but if I had of done then I would have ordered the Mass Biran to start (£4.95), the Garlic Chicken (£7.50), some Bombay Aloo (£3) and a Garlic Naan (£2.50) which ordered individually would have been £17.95. You also are supposed to get coffee and a mint but I am not sure anyone manages to get that far or would have any room. So you save at least a fiver if you take on their deal.

I didn’t do that though and went for The Special Thali and the Mass Biran (another special).

The Special Thali

The Special Thali at Noor Jahan

I love a good Thali, so when they have one on the menu called ‘Special Thali’ well I just had to have one. I will say that this is not one of my better photos, but I hope that it gives you the idea of what was going on in my world (or on my plate) at that moment in time.

This was all vegetarian and so good and tasty that I didn’t even think about meat while I was devouring as much of it as I possibly could.  Clockwise from the top there were 4 pots staring with a divine deep fried paneer dish mixed with spinach, then a thick and creamy yellow lentil daal, followed by a mixed vegetable curry, and finally a pot filled with a spicy chickpea dish (some kind of Channa Masala).

If that wasn’t enough there was a huge pile of mixed vegetable bhaji, a great big naan bread, a bowl of plain pilau, and as always that mixed salad of lettuce and tomato that had nowhere else to be.

The best thing on the Thali was that deep fried paneer dish, those cubes of paneer where crunchy and crisp on the outside, soft on the inside and mixed in with a sweet and tangy sauce filled with spinach. I was also a big fan of the mixed veg bhari, crisp, light, and not at all greasy. They were just about perfect.

The lentil daal was a bit thick for my personal liking, but it was exceptionally tasty nonetheless. The mixed vegetable curry would have graced a plate on it’s own, it was packed with spice and packed with all sorts of goodies; I found green beans, peas, mushrooms, and tomato in my pot, it was lovely!

Mass Biran (Fish Fry)

Mass Biran at the Noor Jahan

Mass Biran basically ‘Fish fried with onions’ is one of the specialities at the Noor Jahan and I know that even though I already had ordered way too much food, but I really was so intrigued about this dish, that I just had to order it as a Starter (as well).

The fish is lightly fried with a spicy coating, the fried onion and peppers were also coated with a spicy mix and were nice a crunchy still. It comes with a green salad that you really don’t need at all, but I let it slide.

This is a pretty good dish, kind of like spicy fish and chips without the chips. I would order this again! (maybe they would do me a side of chips?)

Noor Jahan Menu

I fully admit that I ordered these dishes knowing full well that there was no chance whatsoever that I would be able to eat it all.

It was a decision made in a split moment (aided by several excellent pints of ale over the preceding hour), I was torn between taking a safe option with something basic, or ordering the MyFoodHunt way by getting something memorable and something different.

MyFoodHunt won, I wasn’t in the mood to be taking any safe or simple menu choices or perhaps I was being a big of a greedy pig?

Either way

I heartily recommend trying this place out

______________________________________

Noor Jahan is located at 41 Mansfield Road

It is just up from the Peacock Pub and about 2-3 minutes walk up the hill from the back of the Viccy Centre.

The New Cod’s Scallops in Sherwood – More Fantastic Fish and Chips!

The Cods Scallops in Sherwood

This weekend I visited the newly opened Sherwood branch of The Cod’s Scallops on Mansfield Road. It has only been open for a week or so and I had been excited about visiting them ever since I read that there was to be a second outlet opening.

Outside as you approach it is pretty easy to spot, a lawn filled with deck chairs gives the game away somewhat, we could see it from way down the street as we walked over this past Saturday lunchtime.

Inside it is really well laid out with a pretty large seating area for about 48 people, it feels as though you are in one of those seafront fish and chip shop restaurants at the coast and feels to be miles away from the busy Mansfield Road. I really liked it, it was a lot of fun, with a very relaxed and friendly atmosphere.

Menu

Cod's Scallops Sherwood Menu

Just like the original branch of The Cod’s Scallops in Wollaton, depending on the catch, they have a great selection to choose from; Haddock, Cod,  Lemon Sole, Hake, Gurnard, Plaice, Monkfish…the list goes on.

I am a bit of a traditionalist though, so ‘even’ if they had been selling some sort of ‘magical fish made out of edible diamonds flaked with gold’, I was not going to be wavered from my standard selection of Haddock and Chips, with a pot of Mushy Peas and a nice cup of Tea. I am a man who knows what he likes

Haddock with Chips, Mushy Peas

Haddock and Chips at the Cod's Scallops in Sherwood

It was just as good as I hoped and as I remembered from my last visit to the original Cod’s Scallops. My piece of Haddock was on the large size, way too big for the plate, lovely stuff, I wasn’t complaining portion size wise. The meaty white fish, falls into flakes as you cut in, it is moist and juicy, and tastes ‘oh so fresh’. I love the Golden batter that coats the haddock here, it is both light, crunchy and a little bit crumbly, I dare to say that it is verging on perfection.

The other bedfellows on the plate are the Chips which are cooked in Beef dripping (mmm Nice) and an excellently made pot of mushy peas. I am very happy with the chips that they serve at The Cod’s Scallops, they are solid proper chips, a little bit of a crunch and a soft fluffy inside. The Mushy peas are also rather good, a little bit runny, and a tiny bit crunchy also just as I like.

I had a nice cup of tea, although I could have easily drunk another one so a pot would have been nice. The only thing missing was a slice of bread and butter served on a chipped plate.

All in all I was very happy with my meal and I was so stuffed that I did not need to eat again for the rest of the day!

 

This new location is going to be so much easier to get to for me as it is just a short bus ride out of the city up Mansfield Road, or a ten minute walk from the Forest Recreation Tram Stop.

The Cod’s Scallops Sherwood is at  311-313 Mansfield Road, Nottingham Nottinghamshire NG5 2DA  Phone: +44 (0)115 708 0251

Check them out as well on Facebook and on Twitter

Check out my post about the original restaurant; “The Cod’s Scallops – Fish and Chips Friday”

 

Bean by the River – lovely coffee, sandwiches and homemade cake

Bean by the River Bean by the River Sign

Bean by the River is located on the South Side of the embankment just next to the old band stand opposite the Suspension Bridge where you can cross over the River Trent from the Meadows to West Bridgford and vice versa.

I had been looking at this prime space for ages thinking it could make a great café with its location by the bridge and the river, so I was delighted when it opened up on a 7 day basis as a coffee shop.

I read a lovely article about it in the local West Bridgford Wire (they are reaching over the river a little bit :-) having said that I look at the shop across the Trent from my window, so I guess we both are reaching)

Anyway! They…. the Wire people….. in their article…..told us that it was being run on a daily basis by one of the Owners, Mr Shiraz Nawaz, and he really is hands on.  Every time I have been in, he has made my sandwich and Latte (I didn’t know that until I googled and read the article in West Bridgford Wire) and for what it is worth, he really makes the experience and nothing is too much trouble, he is a very friendly chap.

Ok so what about the food?, I hear you say; “come on man, get on with it!”

Sandwich filling wise, so far I have seen and tried ‘Ham salad, Egg mayo, Tuna Sweetcorn, Cheese Salad, Chicken Tikka, and Coronation Chicken’, basically a pantry shelf of classics.

I ate some of all this;

Chicken Tikka sandwich and Coronation Chicken sandwich

Chicken Tikka and Coronation Chicken Sandwiches

Two of the best things that I have eaten here so far are their Chicken Tikka sandwich and their Coronation Chicken sandwich. They usually have some on the counter as you walk in, but they will also make you one fresh to take away and they will pack it up to order.

That was what I did last week as we couldn’t decide which one to get, we had one of each so that we could share them. I am still not sure which one I like best. I loves me a bit of Coronation chicken, but that Chicken Tikka mix makes a great sarnie too.

You know what? just do what I did, get a buddy in tow and get both, jobs a guddun!

Chicken Tikka and Coronation Chicken

I know that on the face of it, Chicken Tikka just seems to be some kind of  spicy chicken mayo. I suppose to extent it is a little bit, but hey lets be honest it is so good! basically it is cooked chicken mixed with mayo, curry powder, paprika, cumin, and chilli (very simple).

Well how about that Coronation Chicken? I suppose that is also kind of the same thing; its also just mayo and cooked chicken, but this time mixed with mango chutney, lime, and don’t forget those sweet raisins mixed in there (or is it sultanas? I just don’t know for sure)

Who cares anyway? BOTH of these are in my TOP 5 fave sandwich fillings as they are hitting many core elements: creamy, spicy, meaty, and tangy!

__________________________

Lets take it back a notch

Cheese and Ham Panini

Ham and Cheese Panini

They also have a panini machine and I tried out one of their efforts, playing it simple, ordering one with ham and cheese. I liked it as a ‘warm’ sandwich, but it could have been cooked a little longer until the cheese really started to melt and that bread crisped up. Perhaps a little melted butter on the bread would have made my day?

It was good to eat something a little more simple though and I took mine outside to the small seating area with a bag of crisps and a can of diet coke (simples)

Inside the Cafe

Now I am not a coffee expert as I am basically a mug in a tea kind of man, but I could see that they have a pretty good set up coffee wise.

The coffee is Nottingham’s Romano coffe and this is fairtrade apparently which sounds good to me. Even though I don’t really drink coffee I will say that I have had a couple of Lattes over the last couple of weeks and I kind of liked them.

They also sell homemade cakes, things like Lemon Drizzle cake, also Piper crisps (I like the chorizo ones), ice lollies from “The nice lolly company” and even though I cannot order one, you can stop in with your kid in tow (chasing and playing ‘pokemon go’ ) and pick up one of their Children’s picnic boxes containing a drink, sandwich, crisps and a toy for (at the time of writing) just £3.75 I like that!

Bean by the River is located on Victoria Embankment just a 100yds away from the Suspension Bridge. At the moment it is open 7 days a week, so please stop by to make sure that continues

 

Check them out on Facebook

The Bread and Bitter – Great Beer, Classic Pub Grub and a little Caribbean flair

Handmade Burger at The Bread and Bitter

Burger at Bread and Bitter

The last couple of weeks or so I have found myself supping my beer on a Friday night at The Bread and Bitter up on Mapperley Top. This is a totally different part of Nottingham for me to hang out in and a welcome change, brought about partly from the arrival of twins to one of my partners in crime and the need to stay closer to his nest (Congrats to Martin and Kate)

It has also been my gain as The Bread and Bitter is an excellent pub in the Castle Rock Stable serving good and decent real ales, including my staple sup of Harvest Pale. They do some pretty tasty food as well and I have made it my quest to sample one or two things from their menu, all in the aid of the MyFoodHunt family

Now Normally when in a decent real ale pub serving pub grub I am clamouring all over a traditional pub classic and this last week was no different as I went for one of my go to favourites ordering the “Handmade Burger” which proved to be a pretty good decision.

It is a pretty simple affair executed really well, for your money you get a juicy burger patty served in a glazed brioche bun with a slice of gouda cheese, slice of tomato and a bit of lettuce.

In amongst those basic layers there is a nice relish which I should have paid more attention to when I was reading the menu I think it is some sort of aioli, so lets just say that it was a bit of a grown up mayonnaise.

The chips were once again those great big chunky ones and if I am honest I will say that they are too chunky and too, well, kind of healthy for me. I like mine fried not baked. They are solid enough though and sit on the plate in their special tin alongside a really nice simple side salad.

There are plenty of pub classics on The Bread and Bitter menu and plenty of specials on the board, classic wise I almost had the “Homemade beer battered fish, chips, and crushed peas” for £9.95. I heard someone on another table comment that it was really nice but overpriced for what it was.

It did sound nice on the menu; “Harvest pale battered fresh cod loin, with homemade chips, caramelised lemon, crushed peas and homemade tartare sauce” Yum to the max!  maybe another time?

Caribbean Curry – a little bit of home spun flair

Caribbean Chicken at Bread and Bitter

On an earlier visit to The Bread and Bitter I stepped out of my pub classic comfort zone and ordered “Nuldas Caribbean chicken” for £9.95 mostly because this was described as being “made to our own chefs traditional family recipe”

It was basically a plateful of chicken breast, sweet potato, sweet peppers in a Caribbean style sauce

This was not as spicy as I was expecting, I was anticipating a little big more of a punch of flavour wow, but having said that it did leave a little bit of gentle heat on the palate and an intriguing backnote on the palate. It was a little bit sweet, probably a combination of that soft red pepper sauce and those soft sweet potatoes.

There was a smaller amount of chicken than I would have liked for my 10 quid, but enough to fill the dish and leave room for a few more pints of Castle Rock. There was a big ring mould of rice on the plate, what I would call “posh Uncle Ben’s” and a pretty nice mixed salad.

It was all very eatable I wouldn’t mind sitting having a never ending bowlful from a steaming pot on the stove for my tea at Nulda’s kitchen table. I would have just like a tad more spice and a bit more seasoning, it was all a bit subtle for me, maybe all it really needed was salt and pepper? (which I could have added myself)

We also ate some chips when we got peckish

Chips at Bread and Bitter

 

I really liked the sound of a lot of the items on the menu at the Bread and Bitter, but I really think that you need to pick your way through to get a good pricepoint. They have Homemade Gnocci which sounds great but £10.95 seems a lot so perhaps have it as a starter as that is just £5.95

If I was feeling more adventurous or perhaps on a real intrepid MyFoodHunt then I would be really keen to try the Boss Eggs for £6.95 which is described as “Feta and truffle scrambled free range eggs served with avocado, prosciutto or smoked salmon and sourdough bread

The Shalshuka sounded interesting, “a smoked red pepper ragout served in a pan topped with a poached egg and served with warm ciabatta bread and fresh houmous“; You can get that for £5.95 as a starter or for £6.95 from the breakfast menu.

Talking of breakfast, 0ne of MyFoodHunt companions comes up here a lot at the weekend and heartily recommends the “Full English Breakfast” which is favourably priced at £6.95 or £12 for two. I liked the sound of this too, even pre recommendation; “Sausage, bacon, fried egg, hash brown, beans, grilled field mushroom, grilled tomato, toast and butter, and served with tea or coffee” now that sounds like a real bargain!

The Bread and Bitter is located up on Mapperley Top at 153-155 Woodthorpe Drive (NG3 5JL). I rode the number 45 bus up from the City Centre up here and got off at the Mapperley Top shops. My mate with the twins staggered up the road all sleepy eyed from somewhere a bit closer🙂