EATING OUT IN HARPENDEN

 

Sushi in Harpenden

Leyton Rd, Opposite Waitrose

Eat in or take away with freshly made sushi from chef Eddi

Open Mon - Sat.  9am - 5pm

Freshly squeezed juices too!

Below are Jack -the owner and Chef Eddi

Pictured above:

Foreground: Prawn Tempura Dragon Roll

Background: Chef’s Nigiri 6 Piece

Comp:Yellowtail Tuna; Bluefin Tuna and Salmon


Pictured right: Some of the graphic design work created by local artist Johanna Wood

The Harpenden Arms - Dinner review


Where to have dinner in Harpenden on a Saturday night? Restaurant options have grown rapidly and Harpenden now offers a plethora of choice from the traditional to the new wave. My wife and I chose the newly opened Harpenden Arms which promised honest food, well sourced seasonal ingredients and quality cuts of meat, crafted by their team of talented chefs.


The Proof of the Pudding is in the eating so by way of a change I’m reviewing the meal in reverse order, starting with the puddings. Well not quite, the finale was an espresso served in small Italian style cups. An amazingly good one too with a superb crema over a rich and smooth coffee. By far and away better than those made by many big brand coffee bars in town.  The puddings were both a treat to eat being ‘home made’ in the kitchen: Rhubarb creme brulee for my wife and Paul’s chocolate brownie for me.  You can see from the photos how well they were presented.











Now for the Mains. My wife picked a light summery meal featuring fresh seasonal veg -  Pea and Laverstoke mozzarella arancini  coupled with broad beans, fresh peas and a lemon zest salad. I decided to have Seared Sea Bream served with Jersey Royals, chorizo and a heritage tomato salsa. The crispy fish skin and the soft white flesh complemented the spicy chorizo making for many magic mouthfulls.
















Finally the starters. My wife liked the sound of the chickpea fritters with a curried dip and was pleased to find that the curry was fairly subtle, complementing the flavour of the fritters. I went for the Cornish Orchard cider cured trout with a celeriac remoulade and apple jelly. Visually stunning and packed with flavour almost like smoked salmon.


Drinks: Wines by the glass offered a reasonable choice of styles which were fine to go with our meals. If you are there with a group then there are some stunning reds and whites to indulge.


Service: On arrival we were warmly greeted and taken to a table close enough to see out onto the Common. Our waitress, Collette was remarkable, very efficient yet equally friendly. And Kate, the deputy manager was ever watchchful of the whole restaurant.


Atmosphere: Lively without being overbearing, yet relaxed enough to seem personal. Lots of interesting art and old gardening implements adorning the walls.














Price: Very reasonable considering the quality


Overall: I would highly recommend The Harpenden Arms if you want somewhere a little bit different with a lively atmosphere and super food cooked in a modern style. Ron Taylor. Editor.

The White Horse - Dinner review

If you’re looking for a Gastropub that ticks all the boxes, then look no further than The White Horse in Hatching Green. My wife and I were warmly welcomed on Sat July 2 by deputy manager Angus and shown to our table in the dappled sunlight of the modern dining room over looking the gardens and terrace. Within minutes our order for drinks was taken and we nibbled on an amazing dish of olives with a caper and sun dried tomato dressing. We were enjoying the relaxed atmosphere overlaid with contemporary music wondering if any ‘Specials’ were on the menu, not seeing a board on the wall. On cue Tom arrived with the ‘Specials’ board all items expertly explained leaving us with a difficult decision on what to choose.

The Starters

Being a vegetarian poses a problem in many restaurants, but not The White Horse which had a good variety of really unusual suggestions. She started with a Superfood Salad of quinoa, avocado, charred broccoli & spinach topped with toasted pumpkin seeds and a citrus dressing - incredibly delicious. I chose the Gravalux, succulent slices of salmon served with courgette ribbons and horseradish cream.














The Mains

For mains I selected the roast Turbot, highly prized for its delicate flavour. Served on the bone it was a real treat, living up to its name as ‘the king of fish’. Served with clams, crushed potatoes, samphire and lemon butter...a perfect match. My wife went for the pan fried aubergine & feta escalope served with heritage tomato & baby leaf salad, a scrumptious dish.



















The Puddings

The problem of which puddings to choose was solved by choosing three of the options. Iced apricot & toasted almond parfait with roasted apricots: Fresh strawberries with Valrhona dark chocolate dipping sauce and Pavlova, served with coconut cream, mango & passion fruit.  Served together we could dip in and out and mix the elements making for a superb finish. The Pavlova was slightly disappointing... expecting a crispy top with a soft interior we were served a rather hard meringue nest.

We ended the meal with expressos ---superbly made with good crema and full flavored coffee.

















Drinks. A flute of Champagne set the scene for a sparkling evening ahead, and a glass of Gavi di Gavi proved to be a perfect partner for the mains. There is a very good choice of wines including several by the glass. Plus Grand Gins, Cocktails. Mocktails and Summer drinks

Service. The staff (below) could not be faulted being friendly, informative and efficient.

Atmosphere. The restaurant, whilst close to the bar, was separate enough to have it’s own individuality. Stylish, but informal, relaxed and with space between the tables, although the music could have been a few decibels lower.

Overall. We said our goodbyes to all the staff having enjoyed a superb evening. We can highly recommend  The White Horse for its excellent menu with a mixture of traditional dishes and unusual options backed by superb staff who make you feel at home. A quality venue.

Pricing. Good value for a Gastropub


Ron Taylor. Editor

Jan 4 STRADA RESTAURANT CLOSED DOWN--due to lack of business.

Read their comments here:

Jan 27.

Eating out locally just got much tougher! Tried to book table at Brasserie Blanc in St Albans only to be told they are closing on Feb 4. And Jamie's Italian in St Albans has also announced it is closing soon. So with Strada having closed 3 weeks ago where can you go???