Yesterday Dan and myself were invited by Amanda to visit Fancie to sample their new and very popular tasting menus. If you haven’t heard about them yet, twice each week the chefs at Fancie come up with seven wonderful courses to take you on a culinary adventure on a given theme. They range from veggie nights and Mexican nights, through to cheese tasting evenings and fine dining. Most of the evenings are around the £20-£23 mark (the veggie night is £18 and fine dining one is £27) – included in that are seven courses, and your corkage – all you need to do is take along something to drink. This is very reasonable considering you’d pay about that for three courses.
We went along to the fish and seafood night – which could have gone either way for me. I’m not a huge fan of seafood, although I do love fish. Over the past few months I’ve been willing myself to push the boundaries of fish and seafood within my diet and last night was a great opportunity for me to taste the flavours of the sea, cooked good and proper.
So, here was our menu. On there we had everything from crab, prawns and scallops to brill, seabass and salmon. Flavour wise it was jam packed – each dish had a different twist ranging from rich Indian influences and Japanese notes through to Earl Grey tea and Italian.
I loved all of the courses, however if I had to pick some favourites they would be the scallops with bombay potato, cauliflower puree and mango. I can’t remember having scollops this good, and the Indian twist wasn’t overpowering. I love this!
Both the brill and seabass were delicious. The seabass was served with a butternut and Earl Grey puree, which was so unusual, yet it worked so well – especially with the biscuit. Dan loved the brill – I’ve never had this fish before but I’d like to cook with it.
With a delicious pepper puree, this salmon with salmon crackling (I know – what an amazing idea) was lush. It was served with tiny chopped chorizo and was melt-in-the-mouth succulent. This was plate-lickable, but I refrained (only because I was sat in the window, mind).
Our last savoury dish of the evening was my favourite, and it was a perfect way to end – butter poached prawns with potato puree, kale and merlot syrup. Describing this one is hard as everything fit together like a puzzle; sweet syrup with rich greens and perfect prawns. I could eat this everyday – and would like to eat this everyday. I think it would make a lovely Super Club starter!
For dessert we were served strawberry jelly with melon, goats cheese mousse and flapjack pieces. Now anyone who can find room for my favourite cheese in a dessert automatically gets my vote. It was sweet and refreshing, which was perfect after all of those courses. Dan liked it so much he scrapped his dish clean!
I can safely say that last night, Fancie chef John Parsons, made me see fish and seafood in a whole new way. Each dish was hearty, meaty, packed full of flavour and not ‘too fishy’ – by this I mean that there wasn’t a bland, traditional, uncreative seafood sauce in sight.
It was bloody brill (pun-intended)!
Hayley Jayne xx