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Ronnie’s of Thornbury

June 12, 2015 10:59 am / by

I have not posted for a while but last night’s experience at Ronnie’s was so exceptional I just had to put finger to keyboard! My dining companion and I are used to fine dining – we have both dined at the iconic Waterside Inn, for example. So we are not easily impressed but we were absolutely bowled over by the food last night. I had not intended to do a write-up and had not gone prepared, so forgive me if my recollections are slightly hazy and my descriptions short! We decided to go for the six-course tasting menu but chef patron, Ron Faulkner, asked if we were happy for him to cook for us and surprise us. We were delighted to accept and there followed course after course of exceptional food. We started with home made crisps, olives and pesto dip followed by an amuse bouche of gazpacho with apple sorbet. The combination was unexpected but inspired and the gazpacho every bit as good as I have enjoyed in Spain. Our first course consisted of fresh asparagus beautifully cooked with Ronnie’s own take on hollandaise sauce to accompany. We then had cod wrapped in aged pancetta with a garlic puree. The garlic puree was sensational but we both thought the pancetta overpowered the delicate flavour of the cod. We learned subsequently from Ron that this should have been scallop but his supplier let him down. Scallop would have worked superbly. The next two dishes were a revelation. First we had crab cannelloni followed by steamed-in-the-bag bream. The aromas released as we opened the bag were heavenly and the fish perfectly cooked. At last we were on to our main course – a delicious melt-in-the-mouth piece of beef. Two desserts followed – fresh strawberries and fruit salad accompanied by a strawberry vodka and, to round everything off, an amazing chocolate brownie with a superb chocolate ganache. Normally I would add a cheese board to a tasting menu but we were well and truly replete and could not even eat the petits fours which accompanied the coffee!

All in all the most fantastic meal and my dining partner confirmed that this was the best meal she had had at Ronnie’s. Thank you, Ron, for an inspired meal that made our evening exceptional. Oh, and the wine? We started with a glass of Joseph Perrier Blanc de Blanc and continued with a glass of chardonnay from the Languedoc. With the beef we enjoyed a fabulous bottle of Ken Forrester’s iconic Gypsy 2009. Ronnie’s wine list is very good with a selection of wines by the glass as well as a wide range of wines chosen to accompany the dishes served.

If you have never been to Ronnie’s you really must pay it a visit. It still remains my local restaurant of choice.

 

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